Lincoln Overturns Denial of LTD Benefits After Two Appeals
After fighting for her disability benefits for over a year, Lincoln finally awarded benefits to our client following two levels of administrative appeal filed by Attorney Stephen Jessup. When our client first contacted our office she had been recently denied by Lincoln on the basis that the available medical information did not support a level of impairment that would prevent her from performing the material and substantial duties of her occupation as a Customer Service Representative. What stood out to Attorney Jessup most after reviewing Lincoln’s denial letter was the fact that the only medical condition referenced as disabling was our client’s diagnosis of Ulcerative Colitis, with no real evaluation of the effects of her diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis.
The Mandatory First Level of Appeal
In preparing our client’s first Appeal, Attorney Jessup focused on the contents of Lincoln’s internal medical review report with specific attention to Lincoln’s doctor’s assertion that the available medical records lacked objective evidence of restrictions and limitations as it related to our client’s ability to physically perform her occupational duties. To best assess her physical abilities Attorney Jessup arranged for a Functional Capacity Examination, the results of which indicated that she would not be able to meet the “light” duty physical demand level required of her occupation as set forth by the Department of Labor’s standard contained in Dictionary of Occupational Titles.
As our client’s diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis was being questioned by Lincoln, an updated MRI of the brain was performed during the course of preparing the appeal that indicated numerous areas of abnormal white matter highly suggestive of multiple sclerosis. This updated MRI along with additional records and opinions from her neurologist were collected to correlate our client’s diagnosis with the results of the Functional Capacity Examination to establish functional impairment as it related to her ability to work in her former occupation.
Armed with this new objective evidence to substantiate our client’s diagnosis and functional restrictions and limitations Attorney Jessup filed the administrative appeal. Lincoln prolonged the review and exercised its right to a 45 day extension to complete its evaluation of the information submitted. Unfortunately, despite new supportive evidence of disability Lincoln denied the first appeal upholding the decision to terminate benefits, and in doing so echoed much of the same argument contained in the first denial letter. Lincoln continued to assert a lack of information to support an inability to perform her “light” duty demand level occupation, despite objective evidence to the contrary.
The Second Mandatory Appeal
Lincoln is unique amongst disability insurance carriers in that Lincoln’s policies require two levels of administrative appeal prior to the filing of a civil lawsuit in Federal court. Following the denial of the appeal Attorney Jessup began preparations for the filing of the second appeal. Updated claim file information was requested from Lincoln, to include the reports of the medical reviewers who determined our client was unrestricted from work duties. In submitting the second appeal Attorney Jessup received focused responses by our client’s doctors to the medical reports created by Lincoln’s doctors; and reiterated arguments pertaining to our client’s physical restrictions and limitations in light of the objective evidence provided. Attorney Jessup and our client remained optimistic despite all the setbacks that the new independent review performed by Lincoln would result in our client’s benefits being reinstated.
Lincoln did not exercise a 45 day extension during the review of the appeal and within thirty days of the filing of the appeal Lincoln notified our office that it was reinstating our client’s claim for benefits. Needless to say following the year long fight with Lincoln to secure her benefits our client finally felt vindicated.
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Very satisfied with the work of this team. Took well care of my case and took all the necessary time to be responsive and attentive when I had questions. Guided me through recovery and returning to normalcy. All thanks to Jason & Tabitha, thank you!
I’m extremely satisfied with the experience I have had with this firm from day one. The lawyer who has handled my case, Alex, is very efficient and attentive to all my questions and concerns. They are always aware of how my case has gone and they care about my health. I feel optimistic with them because they are very attentive during the process of my claim. I would not hesitate to recommend families and friends if in any situation they need their services. Kathleen as well has been very well and assisted me with this case. I highly appreciate everything they have done for me.
It’s unfortunate when disability insurance companies come after older disabled policyholders just to help their bottom line. It can be a living nightmare the damage they can do to a family. Dell Disability Lawyers are polite, understanding and knowledgeable. They call you back and answer any question you have no matter how unimportant it can be. The amount of stress they took off of myself and family was incalculable. I recommend them highly to take care of any disability case whether it be filing for benefits or reversing a claim decision. They are outstanding.
I could not have been happier or more appreciative of the hard work they performed on my behalf. I was well briefed on my case and it was closed in a timely manner with a financially successful resolution.
Mr. Symonds and Sonia as well as everyone else we have worked with throughout this process have been very helpful, professional and caring to our situation. We are very thankful to have this great team on our side.
Without them my LTD company was dropping my plan with me still suffering from my accident, even with doctor’s statements I’m still disabled. The LTD company didn’t want to advance my policy to the next stage of years of pay. Dell Disability Lawyers saved my policy, and helped to enforce the LTD company’s own policy (for its policy holder, me) that I would be covered still under the LTD policy I had paid for at my previous job, when my accident occurred. These lawyers know what they are doing and can help you too. LTD companies will try to drop you when you still need coverage just because they don’t want to pay on your policy anymore. Don’t let them break contract with ya because they are trying to get out of it. Hit em with legal action to ensure the continuation of your policy you paid for. Dell Disability worked very well for me and continue to do so.
I was denied long term disability benefits from The Hartford after being on it for years. I found Dell Disability Lawyers after doing research online. In a matter of days they responded and explained to me everything that would be done. Dell Disability Lawyers were able to settle my suit against The Hartford very quickly and responded to me quickly. I would definitely recommend this team of lawyers for anyone that is fighting for their disability insurance.
I have had nothing but a great experience with Dell Disability Law Firm. Mr. Alex Palamara and his team went above and beyond my expectations. They will respond to emails and phone calls in a timely manner. Thank you once again for taking my case.
This law firm is the best so far. MetLife denied me two times, they appealed two times for me and they won of course. So if you are on disability and want a chance at winning your case use this firm Dell disability lawyers, kind courteous understanding and they get the job done. You won’t be disappointed.