Denied Disability Claim in 2015? What Can You Do in 2016?
Tuesday, December 29th, 2015
At Frankel & Newfield, we represent policy owners from across the country whose disability claims have been denied during the last few weeks. We know that the holiday season is a time when all you want to do is stick the letter from the disability insurance company onto the pile on your desk and hope that it contains good news.
Waiting until after the holiday can cost you precious days that you will need to appeal your claim. If you have put the envelope away, pull it out and open it. Then give us a call at 877-LTD-CLAIM (877-583-2524).
If your long term disability insurance claim was denied in November or December 2015, your window of time is closing quickly. The first thing you need to do is check your policy and the letter you received informing you of the denial and look carefully for information about appealing your claim.
Most policies have an extremely tight deadline for appealing a denied claim, and the clock begins ticking promptly. There have been important legal cases that have hinged on the question of whether or not service of claim was made on a Sunday, does that day count towards the deadline to file an appeal.
If you do not file your appeal in time, you may lose the right to ever battle the denial.
Your next step after finding the dates on your policy should be to request a complete copy of your file from the office handling your claim. Send your request by fax and request a confirmation phone call. Remember that time is of the essence, and you don’t have time to wait for the post office. An email can also be sent if you have the claims adjuster’s personal email address. Document everything.
Make sure that your file contains every single medical study, lab result and doctor’s report. Ask your doctor’s office if they can provide you with a complete copy of your medical record.
Here’s what you are looking for: we very often find that the insurance company provides only selected parts of your medical records to the person or company reviewing the file to make a decision on a claim. The insurance companies very often subcontract the work of reviewing files and making decisions on claims to outside companies, and they don’t always receive the entire file. If you can compare the two sets of records, you may find the discrepancy.
There are many other things that the insurance company looks for in reviewing your claim. We suggest contacting an experienced disability insurance law firm to protect yourself and your family. An experienced attorney knows how the insurance companies review and process your disability claim, the red flags that adjusters/reviewers look for, and what kinds of reasons are found to deny your claim.
If you have questions, call our firm and learn how we can help.