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Prudential Terminates Benefits And Frankel & Newfield Overturn On Appeal

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

Our client, a 37-year old graphic designer and creative manager for one of the world’s largest luxury goods corporations, was diagnosed with a tumor of the spinal cord that extended into the brainstem, accompanied by two cysts, one below the tumor and one above the tumor.  Our client underwent surgery to remove the tumor. After the surgery, our client went for intensive inpatient physical and occupational therapy. 

She continued to experience dizziness, vertigo, poor mobility, generalized weakness, lack of fine motor skills, and paralysis of both the upper and lower extremities after the surgery and continues to experience these neurological deficits today.  These neurological deficits prevent our client from being able to use her hands to do simple everyday things, like eat a cup of soup with a spoon, hold a cup of coffee, or park where there is a parking meter because she does not have the fine motor skills to pick up a quarter and put it in the meter.  Our client has the continuing support of her doctor, a highly respected and renowned board-certified neurologist whose medical specialties span over 20 years and include neurology, clinical neurophysiology and electromyography.   

Our client was on claim with Prudential for four and a half years when they terminated her claim on the basis that she was no longer disabled.  Before terminating her claim, Prudential did a paper review of our client’s medical records, sent our client to an “independent” medical examination and a functional capacity examination, conducted an Employability Assessment, and eventually conducted surveillance on our client. In the administrative appeal, we attacked the selective review of our client’s medical records by Prudential’s Medical Director, the credentials of the doctor who conducted the “independent” medical examination and her results, the fact that Prudential distorted the findings of the Functional Capacity Examination that actually supported our client’s disability, the flawed results of the Employability Assessment, and the surveillance. 

By aggressively attacking each step in Prudential’s process of terminating our client’s benefits and including more objective medical evidence and test findings that continue to support our client’s disability, we were successful in having Prudential overturn their termination on appeal, and our client’s benefits have been reinstated.

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Frankel & Newfield does not currently handle any Social Security Disability Insurance claims.

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