Monthly Archives July 2016

DO I HAVE TO APPLY FOR SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY?

Does Applying for or Receiving Disability Benefits From Insurance Company Mean You Have To Apply For Social Security? Some clients ask us, “Do I have to apply for social security disability?”.  For people applying for disability insurance benefits, there is no easy answer to this question. As a general rule, employer-disability insurance benefits (those governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, or Federal “ERISA” statute) usually provide for what are called “Other Income Offsets“. This means most such long-term disability insurance policies give the insurance company credit for any income the insured receives from some other source
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Attending Physician Statements

Advice for Attending Physician Statements (APS Forms) ERISA Disability Insurance Applications generally come in three parts: Employee Statements, Employer Statements, and Attending Physician Statements. The Employee (you) completes the Employee Statement. Your employer completes the Employer Statement. Your treating physician completes the Attending Physician Statement. But there is a simple, non-obvious way to improve your disability insurance claim. Before having your doctor complete the Attending Physician Statement, make copies of the blank attending physician statement, and have as many of your doctors willing to complete the Attending Physician Statement complete one for you. As a general rule, more doctors certifying
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Obtaining ERISA Plan Documents

It’s hard to know your rights under a disability insurance contract without a copy of the contract. Fortunately, if you have a disability insurance contract through your employment, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA“) provides you with access to what is called a Summary Plan Description of the contract, which answers basic questions an ERISA plan participant may have about disability insurance benefits. Plan administrators are required to make ERISA Summary Plan Descriptions available to ERISA plan participants upon request. As a general rule, the plan administrator will be your employer’s national human resource department for larger
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Don’t Be Surprised By Other Income Offsets

Offsets Explained Before we get in to offsets, let’s talk about your disability benefits that you applied for.  You finally made it! You gathered all medical evidence and doctor support to show you are disabled and the insurance company agreed and has decided to pay. When the day finally arrives, you walk to your mailbox, and there it is. The envelope with the insurance company’s name on the outside, which holds your big check on the inside. Now, when you combine this check with your [social security, pension, worker’s compensation], you will actually be able to get ahead. However, when
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KEEPING IT COOL CAN GO A LONG WAY

Remaining Calm Despite Adversity You may find yourself so furious with the insurance company that you can barely think straight, but you will benefit immeasurably from calming down before you speak to the insurance company representatives and remaining calm during the conversation. Our staff has reviewed many thousands of denied long-term disability insurance claims over the years, and while calling an attorney is one of the best things you can do once you have received a denial letter from a long-term disability insurer, there is another thing you can do on your own that runs a close second. It is
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