• Dearborn National Disability & Lawsuit Tips

Dearborn National Disability & Lawsuit Tips

If you’ve recently submitted a claim for long term disability benefits to Dearborn National, or if you’re considering submitting a disability claim in the near future, you may be anxious about what to expect and how long the claims process will take. Learn more about what you should be able to expect after filing your claim for long term disability benefits from Dearborn National.

The Handling of the Lawsuit Will Be Different if Your Claim is NOT Governed by ERISA

The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) is a federal law that governs the handling of group long term disability policies offered through an employer. Group claims that are covered by ERISA require claimants to exercise one mandatory disability insurance appeal at the internal level before the claimant can sue in federal court. Individual policies, on the other hand, may allow a claimant to file a disability insurance lawsuit (and, in many cases, secure a settlement) in state court, applying state law, as soon as the initial denial letter is issued.

There are Significant Advantages for a Claim that is Not Subject to ERISA

One of the advantages of an individual disability claim, as opposed to an ERISA claim, is the standard of review the trial court will apply to a civil disability insurance lawsuit for disability benefits. Under an individual policy, the claimant will generally need to show only that they are suffering a disability in accordance with the policy’s definition.

ERISA claimants, on the other hand, will need to show two things: 1) first, that the claimant is disabled in accordance with the policy’s definition; and 2) that Dearborn National’s denial of long term disability benefits was either “arbitrary” or “capricious.” This can be a high standard to meet, especially if the initial disability claim wasn’t well-developed when Dearborn National first considered it.

In both ERISA and individual policies, the administrative record – or what was submitted to Dearborn National in support of your claim for disability benefits – may be all that the trial court can consider when deciding whether to award disability insurance benefits pursuant to the terms of your long term disability insurance policy.

The Time Frame for Resolution of a Lawsuit Varies Widely Based on the Facts of Your Case

Each disability claim is different, and fitting the language of the policy to the circumstances of your case can make it hard to answer the question, “how long will this process last?” Some disability claims are fairly cut-and-dried and can be resolved quickly, while others may require more extensive therapy, treatment, or documentation. In some cases, something as seemingly minor as having a doctor who is reluctant to fill out claim forms can set claim resolution back by months.

One factor that can speed up the process regardless of how long it might take is whether the claimant has help from an attorney. Navigating the disability insurance claim process can be a challenge whether the disability policy is an individual one or an ERISA policy. Disability insurance claimants who are trying to deal with this paperwork and complex claim language while also newly navigating a disabling medical condition can quickly become overwhelmed.

Let Dell & Schaefer help. Our experienced team of disability insurance attorneys spans the country and has helped thousands of claimants recover the disability insurance benefits they’re owed. Visit our website today to set up your FREE consultation with one of our attorneys.

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Questions About Hiring Us

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.

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