AXA Equitable and DMS Approve LTD Benefits for Litigation Attorney with ADHD & Bi-Polar

A successful commercial litigation and trial attorney contacted disability insurance attorney Gregory Dell to seek assistance with filing a long term disability benefit claim with AXA Equitable Life Insurance Company. Our client was in his late 40’s and he had purchased his disability insurance coverage from AXA Equitable Life more than 10 years before he became disabled. Like many business professionals, our client had been struggling for many years with his disability, yet he continued to try to work through his condition of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Bi-Polar. Prior to filing for disability he had been treating with multiple psychiatrist and psychologist on and off for approximately 4 years. Our client was earning in excess of $250,000 annually and had no interest in giving up his career as a litigation attorney. Unfortunately, as the daily errors and inability to get his daily tasks completed began to multiply, he realized that he was no longer able to perform the duties of a commercial litigation attorney.

Definition of Disability and Occupation Duties of a Litigation Attorney

Fortunately our client had purchased an own occupation disability policy that defined total disability as “your inability due to sickness or injury to engage in the substantial and material duties of your occupation“. Our client’s typical work week was 50-60 hours and his substantial and material duties included: conducting discovery, drafting pleadings and motions, attending depositions and court hearings, numerous phone conferences with clients and opposing counsel, preparing Summary Judgment and numerous other motions, trial preparation, legal research, daily travel out of the office to attend court hearings, depositions, mediations or client meetings. Our client was billing over 1,500 hours annually and was involved in multiple active lawsuits at any given time.

AXA Equitable and Disability Management Services (“DMS”) Question Client’s Disability

Disability Management Services Inc. (“DMS”) is a third party administrator that administers all aspects of AXA Equitable long term disability insurance claims. Our law firm has handled hundreds of claims that have been administered by DMS. Despite medical support from our client’s treating physicians, DMS and AXA Equitable required that our client undergo a neuropsychological evaluation and psychological evaluation in order to independently verify his restrictions and limitations. It is unusual to have an IME exam performed prior to claim approval, but DMS was questioning how our client continued to work through his years of suffering. We demanded that the IME exams be videotaped and that copies of the IME reports be sent to our client’s treating physicians for review and comment. We also clarified the scope of the testing prior to allowing our client to submit for any testing. It is unfortunate that we often see disability companies that will question the seriousness of a claimant’s disability because he or she tried to continue working with disabling condition. Disability claimants need to be careful about how long they continue to work while claiming that they are limited by a medical condition. In our client’s case the doctors hired by the insurance company actually agreed with the finding of our client’s doctors. Since our client has an own occupation disability policy he has been able to work in alternative jobs that do not require performance of the same substantial and material duties of a commercial litigation attorney. While working in alternative jobs, our client can collect his full monthly disability benefit and whatever additional income he is able to earn. We continue to monitor and manage our clients AXA disability claim on a monthly basis.

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Do you work in my state?

Yes. We are a national disability insurance law firm that is available to represent you regardless of where you live in the United States. We have partner lawyers in every state and we have filed lawsuits in most federal courts nationwide. Our disability lawyers represent disability claimants at all stages of a claim for disability insurance benefits. There is nothing that our lawyers have not seen in the disability insurance world.

What are your fees?

Since we represent disability insurance claimants at different stages of a disability insurance claim we offer a variety of different fee options. We understand that claimants living on disability insurance benefits have a limited source of income; therefore we always try to work with the claimant to make our attorney fees as affordable as possible.

The three available fee options are a contingency fee agreement (no attorney fee or cost unless we make a recovery), hourly fee or fixed flat rate.

In every case we provide each client with a written fee agreement detailing the terms and conditions. We always offer a free initial phone consultation and we appreciate the opportunity to work with you in obtaining payment of your disability insurance benefits.

Do I have to come to your office to work with your law firm?

No. For purposes of efficiency and to reduce expenses for our clients we have found that 99% of our clients prefer to communicate via telephone, e-mail, fax, sessions, or Skype. If you prefer an initial in-person meeting please let us know. A disability company will never require you to come to their office and similarly we are set up so that we handle your entire claim without the need for you to come to our office.

How can I contact you?

When you call us during normal business hours you will immediately speak with a disability attorney. We can be reached at 800-682-8331 or by email. Lawyer and staff must return all client calls same day. Client emails are usually replied to within the same business day and seem to be the preferred and most efficient method of communication for most clients.


Bruce R. (Arizona)

Steve Dell has done an exceptional job with my disability application process. The firm is extremely well managed. They have acquired an incredible amount of experience over many years. I recommend them for disability insurance claims without reservation. 

Don (Florida)

I called this firm a few months ago completely disparaged due to a company cutting off disability benefits at a time that nearly caused me to lose everything.

Attorney Alex Palmera and Danielle worked hard to reach an amicable settlement and my case was settled a few months later. This is a good firm and the specific expertise in disability claims saved me countless hours of hassle at a time when an already fragile state existed.

Thank you Mr. Palamara and Danielle.

Sandra B. (Arkansas)

I have nothing but good things to say about how my buyout was handled with my disability claim. The level of professionalism was amazing. All of my questions and concerns were answered either by Danielle L. or Alex P. in such a timely manner and with such care I would recommend them in a heartbeat to anyone needing to approach their provider with buyout options.

They did a fantastic job communicating between the provider and me, always keeping my best interest at heart and always answering my many many questions. They really did take most of the stress out of this whole situation. I would give them a 10 out of 10 for every step of this crazy journey. Thank you so much for helping me through this.

Brenda R. (New York)

I needed assistance with an appeal for a LTD claim that was initially denied. Stephen understood what needed to happen to win the appeal and he did win the appeal for me.

Michael C. (Virginia)

Greg Dell and his assistant Anneli have been extremely responsive and helpful, not only our initial consultations, but in follow-ups 1 and 2 years later with the insurance company to ensure that they comply with their agreements (which they did), as well as a separate and only slightly-related inquiry about our health insurance. I always hear back from them very quickly, which is rare and greatly appreciated.

Jeff P. (Oklahoma)

After a very long and frustrating ordeal to keep my LTD payments coming I decided to seek assistance from and attorney. After much research and asking those in the legal profession Dell & Schaefer seemed to be the top choice. I reached out and Alex Palamara was the attorney assigned to my case. All I can say is the experience was outstanding. Both Alex and his Paralegal, Danielle Lauria were excellent to work with. They were very kind, concerned, understanding of my frustrations and treated me with the utmost respect. Communication was excellent with regular updates and telling me what I could expect in each stage of the process.

Alex was also very straight forward with what to expect and no pie in the sky promises or expectations were made. In the end we won our case and I believe it was solely due to their experience and knowledge of not only the laws but the insurance companies as a whole. I would highly recommend them and am very grateful for the help they afforded to me.

Chad B. (Illinois)

I originally spoke with 3 other long term disability lawyers about my case before contacting Dell and Schaefer. None of those law firms would take it. They said the chances of me winning was not good. After finding Dell and Schaefer online I spoke with one of the attorneys that has since left. He did take my case but later it was picked up by Rachel Alters. Rachel is amazing and a very intelligent attorney. She not only won my case but also was able to get my back pay for 6 months.

I also cannot say enough about Sonia Nogueira. Sonia was always quick to answer any of my questions. I would usually hear back from her within hours of sending her a email. I do not know where I would be if I hadn’t contacted them. My family and I cannot thank them enough. Don’t let an insurance company tell you they are not responsible for paying you. I paid them for 20 years monthly and they looked for any reason they could not to have to pay me when I needed my benefit. Thank you Rachel and Sonia for all you guys do.

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