After appeal filed by Attorney Jay Symonds, Mutual of Omaha overturned previous denial of short term disability benefits for Maine Senior Software Engineer

Our client, Mr. C, formerly worked as a Senior Software Engineer for a large computer technology company. In April 2016 a number of medical issues including, chronic pain syndrome, failed back syndrome, chronic low back pain, chronic sciatica, and severe lumbar radiculopathy forced Mr. C to stop working and submit his claim for disability benefits under his employer’s short-term disability (STD) policy, which was funded and administered by Mutual of Omaha (MOO). Under his employer’s disability policies Mr. C would be considered totally disabled if he was prevented from performing the material duties of his regular job. Regular job was defined as the occupation he was routinely performing when his disability began.

MOO denied Mr. C’s claim for short term disability benefits on the basis that he allegedly did not meet the policy definition of disability. Specifically, MOO determined that “restrictions and limitations from normal job duties would not be supported based on the available medical records.” After receiving the denial, Mr. C contacted Dell & Schaefer and discussed his case with Attorney Jay Symonds. Attorney Symonds identified several significant issues in MOO’s denial letter and in the evidence it relied on and agreed to prepare and submit Mr. C’s ERISA appeal with the assistance of his appeal team.

The STD appeal addressed all of MOO’s short-comings and reasons for denial, with a special focus on the medical records on and around the date of MOO’s denial. The appeal next addressed the fact that despite overwhelming medical support from his treatment providers, MOO denied his claim based on a medical records review by a registered nurse that lacked the necessary orthopedic experience to offer an opinion as to Mr. C’s condition or functionality. What’s more, the nurse reviewer misstated and mischaracterized the relevant medical evidence and ignored critical objective testing that confirmed the severity of Mr. C’s multiple conditions. The appeal also addressed the fact that although MOO concluded that Mr. C was not disabled under the terms of the Policy, there was nothing in the claim file indicating or even suggesting that MOO conducted a vocational analysis to determine whether Mr. C’s chronic debilitating physical conditions prevented him from performing the duties of his regular job as a Senior Software Engineer, which was intellectually complex, detail oriented and physically demanding. In fact, MOO never requested or reviewed Mr. C’s actual job description.

Approximately 6 weeks later, and after reviewing the appeal and hundreds of pages of exhibits and medical records as well as the expert reports, MOO overturned its decision to terminate benefits, paid full STD back benefits. Thereafter, Attorney Symonds and his team submitted an LTD claim on behalf of Mr. C, which was approved on initial application. Attorney Symonds continues to represent our client in his LTD claim to best ensure that MOO will not terminate his benefits again. Feel free to call our disability attorneys for a free consultation on this or any matter relevant to your disability claim.

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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, 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.


Bruce R. (Arizona)

Steve Dell has done an exceptional job with my disability application process. The firm is extremely well managed. They have acquired an incredible amount of experience over many years. I recommend them for disability insurance claims without reservation. 

Don (Florida)

I called this firm a few months ago completely disparaged due to a company cutting off disability benefits at a time that nearly caused me to lose everything.

Attorney Alex Palmera and Danielle worked hard to reach an amicable settlement and my case was settled a few months later. This is a good firm and the specific expertise in disability claims saved me countless hours of hassle at a time when an already fragile state existed.

Thank you Mr. Palamara and Danielle.

Sandra B. (Arkansas)

I have nothing but good things to say about how my buyout was handled with my disability claim. The level of professionalism was amazing. All of my questions and concerns were answered either by Danielle L. or Alex P. in such a timely manner and with such care I would recommend them in a heartbeat to anyone needing to approach their provider with buyout options.

They did a fantastic job communicating between the provider and me, always keeping my best interest at heart and always answering my many many questions. They really did take most of the stress out of this whole situation. I would give them a 10 out of 10 for every step of this crazy journey. Thank you so much for helping me through this.

Brenda R. (New York)

I needed assistance with an appeal for a LTD claim that was initially denied. Stephen understood what needed to happen to win the appeal and he did win the appeal for me.

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