After being denied disability benefits, Rabbi suffering from bipolar disorder sues CIGNA

An Indiana disability attorney recently filed a federal lawsuit against the Cigna Life Insurance Company of New York (Cigna). The Plaintiff, by virtue of her employment, was covered by a monthly disability benefit plan with Cigna. When Cigna denied wrongly withheld disability benefit payments, the Plaintiff was forced to file a lawsuit.

The Facts of the Case Against Cigna Life Insurance Company Of New York

Plaintiff worked as a Rabbi from July 1, 2007 until she became disabled in May 2010 due to bipolar disorder and attention deficit disorder and went on disability leave.

Plaintiff submitted a claim to Cigna to obtain her monthly disability benefits under her policy, to which she paid 100% of the premiums for over 3 years.

Under the terms of the policy, Plaintiff is entitled to disability payments from Cigna in the amount of $5,250.00 per month after meeting the policy’s 90-day elimination period.

Denial of Cigna Disability Benefits Claim

Cigna originally denied Plaintiff’s claim on July 15, 2010, and upheld that denial on June 30, 2011 after Plaintiff filed an appeal that included additional medical documentation and argument of her disability.

This is despite the fact that Plaintiff continues to be totally disabled and is unable to work, as Plaintiff’s treating doctor has repeatedly communicated to Cigna.

This is also despite the fact that Plaintiff applied for Social Security benefits, for which she was approved, as the Social Security Administration determined that as of May 16, 2010, Plaintiff is totally disabled and not able to engage in “any substantial gainful activity.”

Lawyer Files Lawsuit Against Cigna

According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff alleged that Cigna failed to provide the following to the plaintiff:

  • Monthly disability payments as stipulated by the Policy
  • The provisions of the disability policy as stipulated by the Policy
  • Covenant of good faith and fair dealing
  • A proper investigation before denying her benefits
  • A fair processing of her disability claim
  • A full and fair review of the denial of benefits
  • An expedient review of the termination of her claim
  • Careful consideration of the statements from the Plaintiff, her treating psychiatrist and psychotherapist, and the Social Security Administration that the Plaintiff is unable to work
  • Independently evaluating her condition via an independent doctor as called for by the Policy to thoroughly evaluate her disability claim

Plaintiff claims that Cigna committed the following wrongful acts:

  • Illegal denial of Policy benefits;
  • Erroneously and capriciously denying Plaintiff’s disability benefits
  • Severe emotional distress
  • Substantial financial losses
  • Incidental and consequential damages

Relief Sought By The Plaintiff In The Cigna Lawsuit

Because of Cigna’s actions, Plaintiffs seeks the following relief from the Court:

  • A judgment that entitles Plaintiff to all unpaid disability benefits and accrued interest
  • A judgment that entitles Plaintiff to all attorney’s fees
  • A judgment that entitles Plaintiff to all incidental and consequential damages
  • A judgment that entitles Plaintiff to all additional damages caused by Cigna’s bad faith refusal to pay Plaintiff’s legitimate disability benefits claim

Did you find this helpful?
Unhelpful (0)

Resources to Help You Win Disability Benefits

Disability Benefit Denial Options
Submit a Strong Cigna Appeal Package

We work with you, your doctors, and other experts to submit a very strong Cigna appeal.

Submit a Strong Cigna Disability Appeal

Sue Cigna

We have filed thousands of disability denial lawsuits in federal Courts nationwide against Cigna.

Cigna Disability Lawsuit

Protect Your Benefits
Get Your Cigna Disability Application Approved
We help claimants throughout the entire application process.

Apply for Cigna Disability Benefits

Prevent a Cigna Disability Benefit Denial
We manage every aspect of your disability claim following claim approval.

Monthly Handling of Your Cigna Claim

Negotiate a Cigna Lump-Sum Settlement

Our goal is to negotiate the highest possible buyout of your long-term disability policy.

Cigna Long Term Disability Buyout

Cigna Reviews
(648)

Policy Holder Rating

0 out of 5
0
Read 0 reviews
0would recommend
5
0%
4
0%
3
0%
2
0%
1
0%
Timely Payments
0.0out of 5
Handling Claim
0.0out of 5
Customer Service
0.0out of 5
Dependable
0.0out of 5
Value
0.0out of 5
Showing 8 of 648 Reviews
Unum

Unum Closed My Case Today

Reviewed by Scott C. on July 5th 2024   Verified Policyholder | March 2023 date of disability
Unum will keep you around, if they pay you 100 a month. But as soon as have to pay more than 2700 a month, they will drop you. We will be going to the attorneys office fir... read more >
Hartford

Ran me Around for Months

Reviewed by David on July 5th 2024   Verified Policyholder | January 2024 date of disability
Scammers. Immoral horrible people.
Reply
Sent on July 5th 2024 by Attorney Gregory Dell

David:

It’s horrible that Hartford did that to you.

Prudential

Denied but Not Denied but I am Denied

Reviewed by KDDK on July 5th 2024   Verified Policyholder | August 2022 date of disability
I went out in Aug. 2022 for neck pain. After seeing a neurologist I had to get an ACDF C5-7, it was also determined I had carpal tunnel in my right hand and bulging disk i... read more >
New York Life

Claiming They Are Not Receiving Paperwork

Reviewed by Macey on June 26th 2024   Verified Policyholder | February 2024 date of disability
After suffering from medical issues from my delivery in February, I had to have a colostomy bag placed. Now New York Life is trying to claim my condition was pre-existing ... read more >
Hartford

Truly Horrible and Immoral Company with No Customer Service

Reviewed by William M. on June 26th 2024   Verified Policyholder | June 2020 date of disability
My experiences with Hartford have been nothing short of cruel. They started off by claiming that having Glioblastoma, which has an expected life span of about fifteen mont... read more >
Hartford

Sent my Direct Deposit to a Strangers Bank Acct

Reviewed by Brad on May 2nd 2024   Verified Policyholder | February 2024 date of disability
I went on short term disability and The Hartford put my direct deposit into someone else’s bank account. Somehow they messed up a number or two and they are refusing to ... read more >
Sedgwick

AT&T Was Great and Sedgwick Horrible

Reviewed by From a great job to a complete nightmare on March 20th 2024   Verified Policyholder | March 2024 date of disability
My Physician recommended that I take some time from a toxic environment after several deaths in my family coupled with AT&T trying to run tenured employees out of the door... read more >
New York Life

Keeps claiming they will not approve claim for pre existing conditions but my illness is not preexisting

Reviewed by M.T. on February 15th 2024   Verified Policyholder | May 2023 date of disability
I have been appealing a claim for LTD for 8 months! New York Life keeps claiming they will not approve claim for pre existing conditions but my illness is not preexisting ... read more >
Answered Questions by Our Lawyers
(48)
Showing 8 of 48 Answered Questions

Q: I filed an appeal and lost. Is it worth pursuing?

Answered on September 29th 2017 by Attorney Stephen Jessup
A: Kim, in my opinion, yes. If you are still within your timeframe to file a lawsuit you have little to lose in t... Read More >

Q: Do I have a case for STD? I was denied twice because a) I hadn't been a fulltime employee for 6 months and b) I had ben on FMLA since Febury.

Answered on August 28th 2016 by Attorney Alex Palamara
A: Frank, we would need to see a copy of the denial letter and the policy. Please feel free to contact our office... Read More >

Q: How can I appeal Cigna's decision if there are no written communications explanation the reasons for claim termination?

Answered on October 20th 2015 by Attorney Alex Palamara
A: Tret, Cigna will be required by law to provide you with a written denial letter setting forth its reason for t... Read More >

Q: Is there a process for appeals not being responded to in the time given? Also, how do I access my records?

Answered on September 29th 2015 by Attorney Stephen Jessup
A: SB, ERISA provides 45 days to render a decision on appeal with the possibility of a 45 day extension- basicall... Read More >

Q: Is it worth is to go to court over $2500?

Answered on August 8th 2015 by Attorney Alex Palamara
A: Mark, If you have no additional appeals your only option would be to find representation to file a federal law... Read More >

Q: How long will it take Cigna to get back to me? Will my military retiree pay be held against my policy 60%? Will Cigna exploit the disparity in the medical community over my illness?

Answered on August 6th 2015 by Attorney Stephen Jessup
A: Craig, Unfortunately it can sometime take up to 45 days to receive a decision from Cigna as to your entitlemen... Read More >

Q: Do I have any options to void an agreement I signed? Can Signa offset my SSDI benefits?

Answered on March 19th 2015 by Attorney Cesar Gavidia
A: Donna, I do not know if you would have any avenues to void the agreement you signed. Regardless of agreeing th... Read More >

Q: Can I sue Cigna even if they do end up paying me?

Answered on March 10th 2015 by Attorney Stephen Jessup
A: Linda, If your policy is governed by ERISA you will need to go through the administrative appeal process prior... Read More >
Helpful Videos
(896)
Showing 12 of 896 Videos
Disability Benefit Tips
(331)
Showing 8 of 331 Benefit Tips

Is Cigna Seeking To Offset Disability Benefit by Social Security Survivor Benefit?

I recently spoke with a gentleman who called into our office who has been receiving long term disability benefits from Cigna for several years and is also receiving Social Security disability benefits. Employer provided disability policies contain what is known as an “Other Income” provision that identifies all the sources of income that will offset your monthly benefit- the most common of which is Social ... Read More >

Is Cigna's Denial of Your Appeal Really a Denial?

Following the submission of your appeal has Cigna sent you a letter stating that after review of the information provided on appeal their decision to deny your claim was correct but also providing you a copy of their medical reviews?Recent changes by the Department of Labor to ERISA regulations now require that a disability insurance company provide you an opportunity to respond to adverse information crea... Read More >

What Should a Claimant Expect When Suing Cigna or any Other Disability Company for Long Term Disability Benefits?

ERISA disability lawsuits are complicated due to the pro-insurance company laws. Our disability attorneys have handled thousands of ERISA disability lawsuits and Cigna is one of the companies that we sue on a routine basis. In this video, attorneys Cesar Gavidia and Gregory Dell discuss the fundamentals of a disability lawsuit against Cigna. If you have a potent... Read More >

Are Cigna Short Term Disability Denials on the Rise?

When it comes to claims for short term disability benefits under ERISA governed group policies, more often than not the short term disability policy is not underwritten by an insurance company, but rather it is administered by an insurance company. What this means is when a policy is underwritten by an insurance company the insurance company financially funds the disability benefit to be paid from its own asse... Read More >

Cigna's latest strategies for handling and denying disability benefit claims

Watch Gregory Dell and Stephen Jessup discuss Cigna's latest strategy for handling disability benefit claims. This video has some tips which may help you to secure disability benefits. Any of our lawyers are available for a free initial phone consultation to discuss your claim.... Read More >

Is a Claimant's Complaints of Pain Enough to Qualify for Short or Long Term Disability Insurance Benefits?

The answer to this question applies to the vast majority of long term disability insurance claims that we handle on a daily basis. Pain is subjective. This means that there is no medical device or verifiable method for confirming pain. A claimant's ability to collect disability benefits based upon pain will depend upon the level of documentation and treatment received from treating physicians. In a recent case... Read More >

Is My Insurance Company Allowed to Take An Offset of My Monthly LTD Benefit for Social Security Benefits My Kids Receive As A Result of My Disability?

It is common practice for insurance companies to find ways to limit the amount of money they have to pay to claimants. If you are receiving long-term disability benefits from a policy governed by ERISA, you have most likely been required to also file for Social Security Disability Income benefits. Insurance companies write this requirement into their policies so they can reap the benefits of any past money awa... Read More >

Is My "No-Fault" Auto Insurance Settlement an Offset Under My Long Term Disability Insurance Policy?

If your policy is an employer provided group disability policy governed by ERISA, then any proceeds you receive from a settlement based on "No fault" auto insurance may very well be subject to repayment as "Other Income Benefits." This situation came to light in a recent federal court case in Michigan against Life Insurance Company of America (LINA-more commonly known as Cigna) and serves as a warning to any c... Read More >
Dell Disability Cases
(375)
Showing 8 of 375 Dell Disability Cases

Cigna Sued For Failing To Make A Timely Decision on Appeal

If your disability insurance claim has ever been denied you will have received a formal denial letter from your insurance carrier in which you are advised as to the basis of the denial as well as provided guidelines set forth by ERISA as to the filing of an administrative appeal to challenge the denial of benefits. The most important of these ERISA guidelines is the notification that you have 180 days from the... Read More >

CIGNA Overturns a Waiver of Premium for Group Life Insurance Policy

In early 2019, the widow of a decease man contacted our firm as she was troubled by the actions of CIGNA, also known as Life Insurance Company of North America. Prior to contacting our firm, the lady’s husband had died from metastatic prostate cancer in July of 2018. Through his prior employer, the decedent was covered under two insurance policies:  (1) a group long term disability insurance p... Read More >

Cigna Admits Error In Denying Disability Benefits

Our client, a former school teacher, suffering from multiple severe medical conditions including autonomic nervous system damage, small fiber neuropathy, a history of prior back surgery, and severe immune conditions had been receiving long term disability benefits through Cigna for approximately two years under his school system’s group disability policy when he first contacted our office. Like the vast majo... Read More >

CIGNA Overturned Their Denial of LTD Benefits for Nevada Healthcare Coordinator

Our client, Ms. G, formerly worked as a Healthcare Coordinator for a large regional healthcare provider. For many years Ms. G suffered from chronic debilitating effects of multiple physical conditions and ailments, including, among other conditions, Intractable Pain, Chronic Venous Insufficiency, which left her with debilitating physical and cognitive impairments. Ms. G was unwilling to give up her career and ... Read More >

CIGNA Denies Technology Manager under the Own Occupation Provision & Dell Disability Lawyers Wins Appeal

Our client, Mr. N, formerly worked as a Technology Manager / Vice President for a large bank. For many years Mr. N suffered from chronic debilitating effects of multiple physical conditions and ailments, including, among other conditions, Parkinson’s Disease, Parkinson’s Dementia, Dystonia and Bradykinesia, which left him with debilitating physical and cognitive impairments. Mr. N was unwilling to give up ... Read More >

CIGNA overturned previous denial of waiver of life insurance premiums

Our client was the husband and beneficiary of Ms. S, who formerly worked as a registered nurse for a regional Healthcare System. In January 2016 a number of medical issues, including cerebrovascular constriction syndrome, vasomotor headaches, unspecified neurocognitive disorder, chronic fatigue, and chronic pain syndrome forced Ms. S to stop working and submit her claim for disability benefits under her employ... Read More >

Dell Disability Lawyers successfully appeal denial of benefits to claimant with CRPS/RSD

Ms. S contacted our firm after receiving a letter from her disability carrier, Cigna, denying her claim for short term disability benefits under her employer sponsored disability plan. Ms. S was suffering from multiple ailments including a rare, often misunderstood condition called Complex Regional Pain syndrome (CRPS), also known as Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD). At the start of the claim, Cigna accepted... Read More >

LINA overturned its previous LTD denial for Medical Technologist

Our client, Ms. H, formerly worked as a Medical Technologist for a National Clinical Laboratory. In July 2017 a number of medical issues, including psoriatic arthritis and osteoarthritis forced Ms. H to stop working and submit her claim for disability benefits under her employer’s long-term disability (LTD) policy, which was funded and administered by LINA. Under her employer’s disability policy she would ... Read More >
Disability Lawsuit Stories
(765)
Showing 8 of 765 Lawsuit Stories

Cigna Denial of LTD Benefits for Schlumberger Shop Manager Upheld

In Jerry Courville v. Life Insurance Co of North America (LINA), Plaintiff was employed as a shop manager for Schlumberger Technology Corporation (STC). In 2015, he began experiencing neck and back pain. In July 2015, he underwent a three-level spinal fusion. Three months later, he underwent a one-level spinal fusion.Plaintiff filed a claim for short-term disability (STD) benefit... Read More >

Missouri Court Rules Cigna Wrongfully Terminated Disability Benefits

In the case of Lapidus vs. Life Ins. Co. of N. Am. a Missouri federal court ruled against Cigna finding that Cigna wrongfully terminated long term disability benefits to Lapidus after having initially approving her claim for benefits. Prior to filing for disability benefits Lapidus worked as the vice-president of medical benefits for BJC Healthcare. Despite having undergone a spinal fusion and additional conse... Read More >

Missouri Court Orders Cigna to Pay LTD Benefits to Medical Sales Executive

The Plaintiff in this case was vice-president of Medical Benefits at BJC Healthcare when a severe back condition required her to have a spinal fusion. She was awarded short term disability (STD) benefits while she recovered. Unfortunately, she suffered serious complications following the surgery which delayed her recovery. Her application for long term disability (LTD) benefits was initially approved, but four... Read More >

Cigna's Termination of Disability Benefits was Arbitrary and Capricious

The case of Lani Kyle Moar v. Cigna Corporation, et al., demonstrates the lengths insurance companies will go to avoid paying long term disability benefits. This Plaintiff’s perseverance resulted in the Court ordering Cigna to pay past due benefits, but also gave Cigna a new chance to deny benefits in a way that will not be arbitrary and capricious.It began in 2000 when Plaintiff, a flight attendant with... Read More >

Court Criticizes Lina For Failing to Perform Independent Examination

Disability Insurance companies are criticized often for failing to perform independent medical evaluations and instead relying exclusively on file reviews performed by in house doctors. The tendency to perform reviews in this fashion is more common with some carriers than others. Such is the case with Life Insurance Company of North America (LINA) also known as Cigna.In Guest-Marcotte v. Life Insurance Com... Read More >

Lockheed Martin Systems Integration Analyst Wins Long-term Disability Lawsuit against CIGNA

Cal Van Steen had been employed as a Systems Integration Business Analyst at Lockheed Martin Corporation and participated in the company’s group long-term disability plan with Life Insurance Company of North America a/k/a CIGNA.In 2011 while walking his dog he was assaulted during an altercation which resulted in a traumatic brain injury that affected Mr. Van Steen’s cognitive abilities, namely his abi... Read More >

Colorado District Court overturns denial of benefits by Life Insurance Company of North America

In Johnson v. Life Insurance Company of America, a Colorado District Court ruled in favor of the claimant finding LINA’s decision unsupported by any reasonable basis. The case dealt with a denial of long term disability benefits at the change in definition from own occupation to any occupation. After paying 24 months of benefits to Ms. Johnson, LINA concluded that Ms. Johnson did not qualify for any occupati... Read More >

Texas Judge Disagrees with Cigna and Applies Claimant Friendly Disability Standard of Review

In Brasseur v. Life Insurance Company of America (LINA), Plaintiff Wilfred Brasseur, a computer engineer, worked in the Houston office of Chicago Bridge & Iron Company when he became disabled. LINA denied his application for long term disability benefits on the grounds that he “was not disabled as defined by the Plan’s terms.” Ultimately, Brasseur filed an ERISA lawsuit in Houston. He filed a motion ... Read More >

Reviews from Our Clients

Request a Free Consultation

Our Lawyers Respond Same Day

5 Ways We Help Get Your Benefits Paid

Get Your Disability Application Approved

Our goal is to get your application for disability income benefits approved. Applying for disability insurance benefits can be a difficult process and the information you provide is critical. Most disability insurance companies look at your application in hopes of finding a reason to deny your claim. Your disability company will ask you to complete numerous forms, interview you, request lots of information, speak with your doctors and possibly request to have you examined by their "hired gun" doctor.

Through our experience of having helped thousands of disability insurance claimants, our disability insurance lawyers will guide you through the entire application process and give you the best chance to get your disability claim approved the first time.

Submit A Strong Appeal Package

If your disability insurance benefits have been wrongfully denied, then our disability insurance lawyers know exactly what it takes to get your disability claim approved. You only get once chance to submit an Appeal, therefore every piece of evidence that will support your disability claim must be included. The goal is to win your disability benefits at the Appeal level, but while preparing your Appeal you must consider how a federal judge will review your disability claim if your benefit denial is upheld.

Preparing a strong disability appeal package is an art that requires you to understand how the courts interpret your disability policy language, ERISA regulations / laws, and how to strategically present evidence in support of your definition of "disability". We encourage you to contact any of our attorneys for a free immediate review of your disability denial.

Sue Your Disability Company

98% of the disability insurance lawsuits filed by our law firm have resulted in either the payment of benefits or a lump-sum settlement agreement. Our disability insurance attorneys have filed ERISA governed and private policy long term disability insurance lawsuits against every major disability insurance company in state and federal courts nationwide and we love fighting for the "little guy" against the multi-billion dollar insurance company giants.

We have recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for our clients and we would like the opportunity to provide you with a free review of your disability benefit denial. There are many complex factors in a disability benefit lawsuit and the legal battle to win long term disability benefits can be fierce.

Prevent A Disability Benefit Denial

Approval of long-term disability is a continuous process as every disability insurance company will evaluate your eligibility for benefits on a monthly basis. You can never let your guard down and assume that your disability company will continue to pay your benefits for as long as you think you need them.

Our disability insurance law firm offers a reasonable flat fee monthly claim handling service in which we handle every aspect of your long-term disability claim and do whatever it takes to make sure you are paid every month.

Negotiate a Lump-Sum Settlement

Let's discuss if a lump-sum settlement or buyout of your disability insurance claim is both available and makes financial sense for you. Our disability insurance lawyers have negotiated more than five-hundred million dollars in disability insurance buyouts and we know how to get you a maximum settlement. A disability insurance company is not required to offer a buyout and not every disability company offers them.

Questions About Hiring Us

Who are Dell Disability Lawyers?

We are disability insurance attorneys that know how to get your short or long term disability benefits paid. As a nationwide law firm we have helped thousands of disability insurance claimants throughout the United States to collect hundreds of millions of dollars of disability insurance benefits from every major disability insurance company.

In more than 98% of our cases, our attorneys have been able to either get our clients paid monthly disability benefits or obtain a one-time lump-sum settlement. Our disability insurance lawyers have seen it all when it comes to disability insurance claims and we know exactly what it takes for your disability claim to be approved.

We offer disability insurance attorney representation nationwide and we welcome you to contact any of our lawyers for a free immediate review of your disability claim. We also invite you to visit and subscribe to our YouTube channel where we have more than 850 videos and regularly provide tips to help protect your disability benefits.

Who do you help?

Our disability insurance attorneys help individuals that have either purchased a long term disability insurance policy from an insurance company or obtained short or long term disability insurance coverage as a benefit from their employer. We have helped individuals in almost every type of occupation with monthly disability benefit payments ranging from $1,500 to $50,000.

Our clients include all types of employees ranging from retail associates, sales representatives, government employees, police officers, teachers, janitors, nurses, pilots, truck drivers, financial advisors, doctors, dentists, veterinarians, lawyers, consultants, IT professionals, engineers, professional athletes, business owners, and high level executives.

A strong understanding and presentation of the duties of your occupation is essential for securing disability insurance benefits.

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 insurance 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 phone, email, fax, or video conferencing sessions. 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 insurance attorney. We can be reached at 800-698-9159 or by email. Lawyers 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.

Helpful Resources