5 Mistakes People Make When Filing Their Long-Term Disability Claims

If you can’t work due to an illness or injury, your long-term disability insurance coverage is meant to provide you with income replacement until you are able to return to gainful employment or, if your disability is of a permanent nature, until the maximum age of coverage, whichever is first.

In order to increase your claim’s chance of approval, make sure to avoid these common mistakes that claimants make when filing for long-term disability benefits:

Submitting an Incomplete Application

Double-check that you have answered all the questions in the application correctly. If a question is not applicable to you, make sure that you note this in the space provided. The insurance company is looking for any reason to delay or deny your claim, so be diligent about providing everything they ask for.

Failing to Provide Detailed Medical Evidence

A doctor’s note is not going to cut it. You need to provide more detailed information that specifically addresses the issue of why you cannot work, especially if your claim includes subjective symptoms such as depression or chronic pain. Make sure to include comprehensive medical reports from your treating physicians that describe how you are functionally limited by your symptoms. The focus of a disability claim will often become whether you are able to perform the actual duties of your own or an alternative occupation.

Missing Deadlines

There are time limits to all disability insurance claims and any delay in proceeding may be subject to a deadline. Don’t delay in proceeding with your claim or obtaining legal advice to clarify these deadlines.

Resigning from Work

We can’t say this enough: there is never an instance where quitting your job is a good option. Resigning could have serious and permanent consequences. For one, you have to be actively at work when you become disabled in order to make a claim for disability benefits. A resignation will automatically make you ineligible for the disability benefits that you paid into as an employee. Further, if you resign and find another job, you will be subject to a pre-existing exclusion period, which is typically one year, under a new insurance plan. If your illness or injury recurs, you won’t be covered.

Giving Up

The biggest mistake you can make is to give up on your benefits. That’s exactly what the insurance company wants, and that’s why they make you jump through hoops during the claims process. They set up barrier after barrier in your way, knowing that you are at your most vulnerable and will not have the strength to fight back.

Remember – If the insurance company denies your claim, this does not mean that your claim is invalid. All it means is that your insurer is hoping you are too weak to fight back so that they won’t have to hold up their end of the agreement.

If your LTD claim has been denied, contact us today for a free consultation with one of our experienced disability lawyers.