Many ERISA disability policies contain a limited benefit period for impairments caused by or contributed to any mental or nervous disorder. There has been much litigation over these issues, and one court has recently determined that organic brain dysfunction did not invoke the mental illness limitation in LINA’s policy. Jewell v. LINA
Interestingly, the court evaluated both the objective and subjective information in the file, and noted that while the objective evidence, which included EEG and CT scans, supported Defendant’s position, the subjective medical evidence, and the well supported opinions of the only neurologist who opined favored Plaintiff’s contentions.
The lesson to be learned as claimants is that the support of the treating doctor is critical to the success of the claim.