If you have a disability insurance policy with Standard Insurance, don’t expect too much from your claims representative in the way of kindness or understanding. Simply put, times are tough at this massive insurance company. At a recent shareholder’s meeting, a chief official said that requests for proposals for disability benefits are down because companies that would normally be shopping around for disability insurance policies are still distracted by trying to comply with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). If you believe that, we have a bridge in Brooklyn that you might want to buy.
Seriously, these large insurance companies may be crying about poor sales, but that’s not why they are tightening the fiscal vise on disabled workers trying to file claims for benefits to support their families. Disability insurance companies don’t rely on sales profits for the funds that to pay benefits. That money comes from investments that are highly sensitive to interest rates. We’ve said it before – the entire insurance field should really be known as a financial sector.
The real crunch that Standard and all of the other disability insurance companies are feeling is that of a low-interest environment. Those low interest rates are expected to be around for at least another year. So, if you have a Standard Insurance Disability Insurance policy and you are considering whether or not to file a disability claim, what can you do?
Consider working with an experienced long term disability insurance law firm before filing a claim. In a low interest rate environment, the pressure to minimize payments to policyholders is just business as usual for the insurance company. For policyholders, it can be the difference between being able to pay a mortgage and falling into foreclosure.
If your claim is in process, but seems to be taking an overly long time to resolve, make sure that you are documenting every contact with the insurance claims adjuster. Keep careful notes about your conversations, and if you are not able to keep notes, ask a trusted friend or family member to do so.
Recent court decisions have tightened the time frame that you have to appeal a claim once it is denied – the clock starts ticking long before the denial is even issued, which means that your time to respond is extremely limited. Missed deadlines may mean losing the option to appeal – ever. Open any letters, packages or emails that are sent to you – no matter how distasteful their presence may be – so that you don’t miss any deadlines.
Keep your doctor’s appointments, and keep a notebook of your coming and goings in and out of the house. Expect that the insurance company has hired an investigator to conduct video surveillance. This is such an inexpensive means of tracking your whereabouts that it’s easy for them to put into place.
Do not post your life on any social media sites. We don’t care how much you know about the security settings on Facebook – there is nothing that you can put online that someone who really wants to can’t find. Consider emails a potential future piece of evidence, and be mindful of that correspondence with regard to your claim as well.
If you have questions about your Standard Insurance disability insurance claim, give our office a call at 877-LTD-CLAIM (877-583-2524). Learn how we can help you, even when the insurance company claims that you have no claim.