Hartford scrutinizes long term disability benefit claim after 13 years of continuous disability payments

There seems to be a trend recently in which the Hartford disability insurance company is closely scrutinizing long term disability claims regardless of how long a claimant has been on claim. In the past 7 days I have been contacted by two separate claimants that have been on claim with Hartford for over 20 years and are having issues with Hartford. We usually see problems develop with long term disability claims when a new claims adjuster is assigned to a disability benefit claim.

In my opinion, Hartford is one of the most difficult and unreasonable long-term disability insurance companies to deal with. I based my opinions on long-term disability claims my firm has handled and the numerous lawsuits around the country that discuss the conduct of Hartford. Learn why the Hartford lawsuits are challenging for disability claimants.

A woman recently contacted me and she asked that I share her experience with Hartford so that other disability claimants can be aware of Hartford’s claim handling tactics. This woman stated the following:

The Hartford sent us a letter demanding that we sign a bunch of papers allowing them access to ALL doctors previously seen, All bank accounts, several questionnaires or they would cut off all benefits (which they did). I spoke to a paralegal at a local law firm that told me to sign all papers unless I had something to hide. We reluctantly signed the papers (I didn’t feel that they needed our bank account info amongst other info not pertaining to this claim). My wife has been on disability with Hartford for 13 years and she has seen many doctors. Her primary doctor has recently filled out a letter stating that there was no time table for her return to work ( she just had an epidural in her spine last week). The Hartford has just sent us a letter stating that they have basically annoyed several other doctors that my wife has seen recently (she has renal issues also) trying to get them to give information but they are blackmailing us as they did at the beginning by saying you MUST tell your doctors to send them the information within 21 days or we will shut off your benefits. They have continually tried every angle to cut off my wife’s benefits with these harassment techniques. We didn’t want to sign any of these papers but we did. We think we should tell them that we are revoking their right to contact everyone. (My wife also gets social security because of this injury and we fear The Hartford will destroy that also leaving us in ruins). Now the doctors that my wife sees are being tormented which will have an effect on the care my wife receives AND now they are resorting to another type of blackmail as they expect us to do their work contacting these doctors to force them to give in to their demands or they will cut us off. I don’t believe we signed up for that duty. I originally thought that they were going to negotiate a payoff settlement but instead it appears that they are trying the bullying tactic so they can stop paying.

This woman’s experience and frustration with Hartford is consistent with the hundreds of Hartford disability claim emails we receive each year. In this scenario, a claimant should never revoke Hartford’s ability to contact a treating doctor, however Hartford does not have a right to receive whatever information they feel like asking for. If you have questions for a Hartford disability attorney regarding a long-term disability claim, contact us for a free consultation.

Comments (19)

  • “Me”, you will have to review your LTD policy to determine whether, in general, the personal injury settlement is an “Other Income Offset” to your monthly benefit. If so, what the settlement funds are intended to compensate you for (e.g., lost income, current/future medical expenses, etc.) will determine how much of the settlement funds can actually be offset. I suggest you contact our office and speak with one of the attorneys to discuss in more detail your circumstances and your options.

    Jay Symonds Sep 16, 2022  #19

  • After i was hit by a car and seriously injured in May 2020. Fedex had me do a claim with The Hartford which u believe is employer paid but not sure at first i had STD but now I’ve been on LTD with the Hartford for 2 yrs now. If I receive a settlement from AAA from the person who hit me. Do I have to pay back all the STD and LTD? If so why? I’m so over dealing with these people honestly.

    Me Sep 15, 2022  #18

  • Finch, the carrier is entitled to request any documents or information they feel is necessary or relevant to properly investigate your claim. I’m not sure why they would now want to go back two years from your pharmacy, but you could request the records yourself and submit them rather than give them authorization. If it becomes a problem, I suggest you contact our office and speak with one of the attorneys to discuss in more detail your circumstances and your options.

    Jay Symonds Aug 25, 2022  #17

  • I was with Aetna for 15 years, and they sold my LTD to The Hartford. Now I am battling weekly with a Senior Ability Analyst who is demanding things by certain dates or they will close my file and not pay me. Now they want my Pharmacy Phone number and want 2 years worth of prescriptions faxed to them. I’ve never authorized that, so can they do that? Also since the Covid Pandemic and with prices being sky high, I can’t afford all my medications and been passing up on the expensive ones and getting them from Canada. My Nebulizer medication was $30.00 a month at Wal-Mart, but then went to $700.00 a month. I can’t afford that, so now get it from Canada. If I tell The Hartford that they will drop me. What can I do? Can The Hartford just call up my Wal-Mart Pharmacy and ask for 2 years worth of prescriptions records even though I’ve never signed any authorization for them to do so?

    Finch H. Aug 24, 2022  #16

  • Claudia, typically, employee benefit disability benefits are not contingent on legal residency or immigration status, only employment status. However, it depends on the disability policy and its eligibility requirements, which you should review.

    Cesar Gavidia Aug 18, 2022  #15

  • Can the Hartford stop my husband’s disability payments if they find out that he doesn’t have legal immigration status when he became disabled?

    Claudia P. Aug 17, 2022  #14

  • Why does the Hartford ask if you received pension? That is none of their business . Do they have the right to know?

    Janine Jun 21, 2022  #13

  • The Hartford is trying to say my and that ssi retirement payments which started in October 2020 can reduce my Ltd payment which started in April 2021 and that those payments are considered as overpayment .

    Robert Feb 1, 2022  #12

  • Larry, unfortunately, as long as you remain on claim you are required to complete their claimant statements and your doctors will be required to complete the attending physician statements as often as they request them. There is the possibility that you may be a candidate for a buyout of your claim; however, Hartford is not required to offer one. If you are interested in a buyout please contact us to discuss your options.

    Cesar Gavidia Mar 10, 2020  #11

  • I’ve been on LTD now for 10 years. Every year is the same B/S with Hartford. You would think they would leave me alone after 7 Heart attacks (5 cardiac Bypasses, 10 stents), 11 herniated discs, Neuropathy in both legs due to sciatica, I loose my balance most of the time and fall. Fractured my wrist walking from my kitchen to the dining room. Legs gave out. Happens more often now, I also had cataract surgery 2 days ago in my left eye. Eventually have to do the right shortly as well. Went through 2 Spinal Stimulators (Burnt both of them out). Multiple epidurals, nerve blocks, etc. Not one Neurosurgeon will touch my back. Went from Maine to Texas looking for help. All said sorry I’m a high risk. I also am going to need a knee replacement in the near future as well. Bone density has been weakening due to the many pills I have to take for my Heart, Diabetes, Back, etc, Oh! did I mention I’m 53. And prior to my first heart attack, I was healthy. Never smoked. It was brought on by stress. And the hospital where I had the bypass surgery somehow dropped me and herniated 11 discs! Not one lawyer would take the case. They were afraid the hospital will drag it for years and I would go broke.

    Anyway, Hartford threw my case to a service center in India. Paperwork needs to be filed annually as per Hartford. But the service center breaks my Easter Eggs every 7 months and I call they say you’re not due till the end of June. Well here I am filling out forms with my doctors in March then they insist AGAIN in June. And yes they did cut me off twice in 9 years. There’s got to be some sort of way to tell them to leave me alone! They want everything under the sun. IE: Their Questionnaire which I cant do any activities, The Doctor’s forms, and the best part. My income and any profits from stocks or bonds. Yes they consider that income as well. So I put all that in my wife’s name. No big deal. I’m gonna die some day anyway. So what the heck! But it makes you also paranoid. God forbid I have a good day where I can walk with my cane in lieu of my walker. And throw out the garbage. Can’t tell you how many times, there were suspicious cars taking pictures. I’m afraid to even walk out of my house thanks to them! Some life of luxury I have.

    Larry Mar 7, 2020  #10

  • Raul,

    Please contact our office to discuss your claim in detail.

    Stephen Jessup Jul 28, 2015  #9

  • Please I need legal advice to handle The Hartford. I’ve been trying for almost 1 year to receive my LTD benefits and it’s something after another and they keep making it harder to proceed.

    Raul Esqueda Jul 27, 2015  #8

  • Cyndi,

    I see no reason why a disability insurance benefit from a disability carrier would be affected due to you getting married and your husband having income.

    Stephen Jessup Mar 3, 2015  #7

  • I have been on permanent LTD for 9 years (severe non-ischemic heart failure EF<20). I have been asked to wed. Will my new husbands income effect my benefit? He receives no disability income of any source. Nor will he. He is gainfully employed. Will I be adversely effected by marrying?

    Cyndi Mar 2, 2015  #6

  • Debra,

    Is your husband’s award of social security benefits based on your claim for disability with the SSA? If not, then Hartford should have no right to seek any overpayment. Hartford would only be entitled if your husband was receiving dependent SSDI stemming from your disability.

    Stephen Jessup Dec 22, 2014  #5

  • I’m curious about a letter I received from Hartford about my husband’s SSI he just filed for and is getting about 927 a month. We have been separated for the past 7 months and he is in Portland and I live in Texas. I have had no problem with them that was so bad, but now I’m afraid they are goig to drop me. What can they do about dropping me? I really need some advise because this would ruin me, I would end up homeless I’m afraid. As you know with Hartford I have a very short time to get back with them. Thank you in advance.

    Debra Flock Dec 21, 2014  #4

  • Well you ain’t seen nothing, MetLife calls my wife on the phone for updates only to call her names,
    like faker, lier, and you better get a job because you are not going to get benefits for long. Then they call her doctors telling them she is a faker and sending them non stop questioners.

    When she said she had enough of their crap they sent her first to a 8 hour test that when they read
    her restrictions (MetLife said she had none to them) they sent her home. Then right after they sent her to an independent medical exam.

    She sent the CEO of MetLife a letter stating she is being harassed and bullied, he responded by saying that’s their policy. After the letter they then did video surveillance.

    This was on year 6 of disability, they never canceled her payments ever. They went away for 5 years now they’re back calling again.

    If u have MetLife get rid of your phone so they can not call you.

    Dan Nov 20, 2013  #3

  • Tom, if your claim is governed by ERISA, which it probably is, then you must file an APPEAL with Hartford before you can file a lawsuit. For more information about ERISA Appeals you should check out this page.

    Gregory Dell Nov 23, 2010  #2

  • I have paid the LTD insurance for 10 years at work and now am disabled with a bad knee. The Hartford refuses to pay the LTD. They say the injury is phony. Should I sue the Hartford or my employer?

    Tom D Nov 22, 2010  #1

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Andre S.

Mr. Dell,
I became another one of Hartford’s victim to have my LTD claim denied after 2 years, based on a report from one of their IME hired guns.

From the beginning Rachel Alters was very informative and professional, as we discussed my options. Every time I had a question for Rachel, I would get a response within hours. Within a few months of hiring Dell & Schaefer, I was completely shocked and happy that we resolved my claim.

I wanted to let you know I think Rachel is one of the most professional persons I have ever had the pleasure of dealing with and with people like her, you must have one hell of a Law Firm. I want to thank Rachel for the superb job she did and let you know I think your Law Firm is Top Notch in my book. In closing, I’ve spent a lot of spare time reading the ERISA act. When it was voted in, in the 70’s it was a good bill. And then in the 80’s when the insurance lobby added LTD, it gave them something to hide behind and deny a lot of legitimate LTD cases. If you ever need a client in to explain what I went through, I’d be more than happy to do so. If anyone I know experiences what I faced with this Long Term Disability case, I will surely point them to your Law firm.

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