Long-Term Disability Claim
by Tim Louis
Long-term disability insurance is designed to protect you in the event of serious injury or illness. If your psychological or physical condition prevents you from being able to work, the insurance company should pay out a monthly benefit. This is designed to provide some financial support for your care and treatment.
However, Insurance Companies Deny Long-Term Disability Claims
Unfortunately, the reality is that insurance companies deny long-term disability claims. Sometimes rehabilitative therapy for people suffering from a long-term disability can be helpful, but it is not always the case. Permanent disability can sometimes be the result as well. However compensation of long-term disability benefits is the least you should expect if you have insurance.
Dealing with insurance companies can be very difficult, particularly if you are dealing with a serious illness or condition. Having a lawyer, like Tim Louis, to guide and protect you through the process is the key to getting the compensation you deserve. If your long-term insurance claim has been denied, call Tim Louis at (604) 732-7678 for a free consultation.
Long-term Disability Claim Denied
H.G. contacted me just over two years ago. She was referred to me by a previous long term disability client of mine who was very pleased with what I did for her. H.G.’s long term disability insurance company had just denied her claim for LTD benefits. H.G. had lost the ability to work at her very physically demanding position. She had developed Activity-Related Soft Tissue Disorder (ASTD) with myofascial injury to her cervical spine and shoulders. She had also aggravated her pre-existing degenerative disc disease.
She suffered from chronic joint and muscle pain, muscle spasms, numbness, neck pain, shoulder pain and pain and stiffness whenever she would bend, lift or walk.
I immediately obtained a copy of her insurance policy and then filed her lawsuit in the Vancouver Registry of the Supreme Court of B.C. Her insurance company filed a boilerplate response. They actually denied that she was disabled!
Insurance companies take me seriously and so it did not surprise me that fairly soon after the lawsuit had started they began to make offers of settlement. With my client’s instructions I rejected offer after offer.
The insurance company then conducted an Examination for Discovery of my client. At this step in a lawsuit there is no judge present. There is a court reporter who takes down a transcript of all the questions asked by the opposing lawyer and all of my client’s answers. I always prepare my clients extremely well before this step in the lawsuit. With H.G., this was no exception. While H. G. was a credible witness, I knew the insurance company lawyer might try to get her confused and then take advantage of the inevitable inconsistencies as she spoke.
A few days before the Discovery, I engaged her in a mock Discovery so she could practice what it would be like to be under a bit of stress. She did very well at the Discovery. H.G. came across as a likable, believable and reliable witness. After the Discovery, she told me how helpful our preparation together had been for her.
Shortly after the Discovery, the insurance company lawyer asked if we might be agreeable to Mediation. I recommended to H.G. that she accept the insurance company’s suggestion of mediation. Mediation is off the record, that is if settlement is not reached during mediation and the lawsuit proceeds to trial, nothing said at Mediation can be used against the client.
Mediation is a process whereby the parties engage in active negotiation with the assistance of a trained professional mediator. Throughout the day, the mediator will alternate between bringing the two parties together into the same room for face to face negotiations and separating the parties into two separate room shuttling back and forth between the parties. A mediator is different from an arbitrator in that an arbitrator makes a decision that is binding on both parties whether they liked the decision or not. Whereas a mediator only makes recommendations.
At the mediation, the insurance company slowly increased their offer of settlement – one-hundred thousand, one-hundred twenty thousand… two-hundred thousand and then finally two-hundred twenty-five thousand. I calculated that this was more than my client would receive at trial if she won. With great pleasure and a lot of relief, H.G. accepted the offer and we had a settlement. I had achieved the goal I aim for with all of my long-term disability clients – settle for nothing less than trial dollars without going to trial.
Has your Long-Term Disability Claim Been Denied?
If your long-term disability claim has been denied, call Tim Louis at (604) 732-7678 for a free consultation. Get the compensation you deserve.
Get the help you need. Give Tim Louis a call today at (604) 732-7678 for a no-fee telephone consultation, during which he will answer all your questions, no matter how complex. If you have received the insurance claim denial in writing, he will also review the letter and schedule a second no-fee telephone consultation to review and assess that long-term disability claim denial.
Don’t let the insurance company bully you into a settlement. Before you accept any decision, contact Long-Term Disability Lawyer Tim Louis.
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Long Term Disability Plan Regulation
Tim Louis” target=”_blank” title=”Learn more about long-term disability plan regulation in BC”>Learn more about how the BC Government regulates long-term disability plans and long-term disability claims.