Florida Attorneys Answer Frequently Asked Questions About Insurance Disability Claims
One of our most vital roles as lawyers at Gallup Auerbach is to answer questions, such as those below, about topics important to our potential and existing clients looking for answers to their ERICA disability claims or private disability insurance issues.
Why should I get an attorney’s help to obtain the insurance disability benefits I am eligible for?
If you attempt to file your own claim, you may make an irreversible mistake and lose your chance to collect benefits. Please keep in mind the following:
- The insurance company will naturally look for ways to deny or delay the payout of benefits.
- An experienced attorney can help you avoid harmful errors involving timing, waiting periods, evidence and interpretation of policy terms.
- When a lawyer helps you file your claim, if it becomes necessary to take legal action against the insurer, you will be ready.
What is the difference between private and employer-provided long-term disability insurance?
The Employer Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), a federal law passed in 1974, spells out rules regarding employer-provided long-term disability insurance. For example, if you have employer-provided insurance and your claim is denied, you must file an appeal within 180 days after a claim has been denied. An experienced lawyer can make sure you don’t miss important steps.
Private long-term and short-term disability insurance is not bound by the same limits For example, if you need to sue a private insurance company, you may be able to recover damages in addition to past-due benefits. Rules and terms may differ from employer-provided insurance and from one policy to another.
I have applied for long-term disability benefits and my insurer has ordered an independent assessment. What should I do to prepare for this event?
An independent evaluator may visit you at home and conduct a series of tests, such as a Mini-Mental State Exam (MMSE). An attorney who has helped many other clients obtain disability benefits can let you know what to expect to prevent stress, confusion and, possibly, a poor result.
Can I receive both long-term disability benefits and Social Security Disability benefits?
Yes, but the rules and details of each will differ. To receive SSD, you must be totally disabled for a year or longer. Your case may take months or even more than a year to resolve. If you receive benefits through your private or employment-related insurer, the insurer may reduce your benefits if you receive SSD benefits.