Cigna Overturns Denial Following Dell & Schaefer Appeal

Ms. D contacted our firm when she was denied long term disability benefits by her disability insurance carrier, CIGNA. Ms. D was a Catheterization Lab Tech and was often required to perform her duties during stressful situations involving emergencies like heart attacks and other life-threatening events. She was required to be on call for a minimum of 24 hours, often 2-3 times per week. She had a demanding job that required her to have the ability to maintain focus and concentration.

Unfortunately, Ms. D began suffering with depression and frequent and unpredictable anxiety/panic attacks. The events were often physically and emotionally paralyzing making it impossible for her to function for hours at a time. She was also suffering from migraines 1-2 times a week.

Due to her symptoms she was left with no choice but to apply for disability benefits as it became too difficult for her to function in a safe manner. Cigna initially approved her claim for short term disability benefits but terminated the claim shortly before it transitioned to long term disability following an internal file review.

Given her condition, Ms. D felt overwhelmed dealing with Cigna on her own so she contacted Dell & Schaefer. We agreed to take on her case.

In denying Ms. D’s claim, Cigna had relied on a review by its behavioral health specialist who spoke with Ms. D’s therapist and confirmed that Ms. D suffers from debilitating symptoms. Despite the support from Ms. D’s treating therapist, Cigna denied the claim. The denial letter indicated that Cigna had been unable to confirm a functional impairment beyond July 6, 2016 that satisfied the definition of disability as stated in the disability contract. Like many of Cigna’s denial letters, the letter used standard “cookie-cutter” language often seen in Cigna’s letters.

In preparing the appeal, our team worked on gathering additional evidence of Ms. D’s Condition and requested the completion of custom questionnaires by Ms. D’s treating providers. The questionnaire addressed every problem that Cigna claimed existed with Ms. D’s claim. The appeal focused on the clinical findings evident in Ms. D’s medical records that Cigna had overlooked or failed to investigate.

After reviewing the appeal, Cigna had no other option but to overturn its denial of benefits. The appeal addressed every reason relied upon by Cigna in denying Ms. D’s claim and made it clear that Ms. D’s condition satisfies the definition of disability as stated in her short term as well as her long term disability policies.

Cigna issued all back benefits owed and continues to pay benefits.

The Attorneys at Dell & Schaefer have seen many claims denied by Cigna and their cookie cutter language is used routinely by Cigna when denying claims. Our attorneys have developed appeal strategies specific to the insurance company and have been very successful in getting denials overturned.

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FAQ

Do you help Cigna claimants nationwide?

We represent Cigna clients nationwide and we encourage you to contact us for a FREE immediate phone consultation with one of our experienced disability insurance attorneys.

Can you help with a Cigna disability insurance policy?

Our disability insurance lawyers help policy holders seeking short or long term disability insurance benefits from Cigna. We have helped thousands of disability insurance claimants nationwide with monthly disability benefits. With more than 40 years of disability insurance experience we have helped individuals in almost every occupation and we are familiar with the disability income policies offered by Cigna.

How do you help Cigna claimants?

Our lawyers help individuals that have either purchased a Cigna long term disability insurance policy from an insurance company or obtained short or long term disability insurance coverage as a benefit from their employer.

Our experienced lawyers can assist with Cigna:

  • ERISA and Non-ERISA Appeals of Disability Benefit Denials
  • ERISA and Non-ERISA Disability Benefit Lawsuits
  • Applying For Short or Long Term Disability Benefits
  • Daily Handling & Management of Your Disability Claim
  • Disability Insurance Lump-Sum Buyout or Settlement Negotiations

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, GoToMeeting.com 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.

Dell & Schaefer Client Reviews   *****

Karen F. (New York)

I applied for and was denied my LTD insurance a little over two years ago. I was distraught, I had no idea they could just refuse you. My Social Security disability lawyer gave me Dell & Schaefer’s name and phone number. I called the next day, and they immediately called me back and set up an appointment the next day, for me to speak to Alex Palamara on the phone. They are located in Florida.

He was extremely empathetic and friendly. He took all of my information and he and Danielle Lauria, who works with the lawyers, prepared a statement to the insurance carrier. They also send me copies of everything that they send out. They sent a very professional and informative letter explaining why I should not be denied the insurance. The insurance company immediately decided to pay me the insurance that I signed up for.

I have always received quick information and phone calls, whenever I request assistance. They did have to do another appeal for me, recently. It was very involved, but written up extremely well. I was offered a settlement, and they were even able to get the in Insurance company to increase it for me. I would recommend Mr. Palamara and this law firm to anyone who has a problem with their LTD insurance. I don’t have a single complaint about the way I was treated. I’m extremely thankful for their help over the last few years.

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