Do I Have A Time Limit To File An ERISA Disability Lawsuit?

Calculating the time limits when an ERISA disability lawsuit has to be filed is tricky. In a recent decision out of a North Carolina Federal Appeals Court, the Court ruled that the time limit to file a disability insurance lawsuit is already running even when the claimant is filing the required administrative ERISA appeal. While it seems unfair that the clock is running even before a person is allowed to file a lawsuit, the Court feels otherwise. Watch this video to learn about dealing with a deadline for filing an ERISA lawsuit. Thus, it is always important to file an ERISA disability lawsuit as quickly as possible once all of the appeals have been exhausted. If your short or long term disability claim has been denied, contact any of our disability lawyers for a free consultation.

Leave a comment or ask us a question

There are 6 comments

  • Joe, under ERISA governed policies, under the provision for “Legal Actions” it typically reads that the time limit is three years from the date proof of loss is required.

    Stephen JessupAug 15, 2017  #6

  • Is there always a 3 year limit, or is it based on policy language? I reviewed my policy and did not see information about any time limits for filing a lawsuit after appeals have been exhausted.

    JoeAug 10, 2017  #5

  • Karla, you will need to discuss with an employment attorney any action against your employer. Who was the insurance carrier for the disability claim that denied your claim? Also, was the denial in 2011? If so you may be past a statute of limitations to bring suit on the disability claim. Please feel free to contact our office to discuss.

    Stephen JessupApr 27, 2016  #4

  • I was diagnosed with Narcolepsy Oct. 29, 2011- I am a registered nurse-my employer paid short term disability for 2 wks and stopped, stating my Dr was not filling out paperwork appropriately- I changed Dr’s in Jan., had a sleep study and MSLT confirming that diagnosis- I was told to file for Social Security Disability at that time, I would not be able to return to work- employer continued to refuse to pay my wages- I had no income for 1 1/2 yrs, causing me to lose my home of 20 yrs, ruining my credit , forced to move into my Mothers basement- during that time I searched for an attorney to sue my employer ( eventually found one) and was allowed SSD on first request, which took 6 mon. – I am still experiencing repurcussions from my employer holding my pay for so long- lost my home , ruined my credit so I am forced to pay high interest on EVERYTHING, had to file bankruptcy, enduring the stigma of living in poverty, had to empty my 401 K plans trying to hold on, etc- is it too late to sue my employer and what would the charges be?

    KarlaApr 26, 2016  #3

  • Ms.Gong,

    Policies require that you provide proof of loss and notice of claim within a certain time frame. If you are now only filing for disability then you may be precluded for failure to give notice and for not being covered. If a claim was not filed prior to the date you voluntarily quit your job then Standard may not be responsible for payment of benefits under the plan. A diagnosis does not in and of itself equal a disability- a doctor would have had to certify that your condition prevented you from working prior to quitting your job. Unfortunately, there stands a likely chance we would not be able to assist you.

    Stephen JessupDec 16, 2015  #2

  • I was covered by my company’s short term and long term disability plan when I was diagnosed with schizophrenia in May 2013. I quit my job Jan 31 2014 because of the illness. I experienced psychosis for an extended time and could not take care of myself until recently. I am trying to file for disability benefits that should cover for me in 2013 but the Standard Insurance said I am no longer an employee and I can not file. Is it legal for them not to cover the disease that led to me quitting my job. I have both doctor’s diagnosis in 2013 and a recent hospitalization certificate.

    Ms.GongDec 15, 2015  #1


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.

Michael C. (Virginia)

Greg Dell and his assistant Anneli have been extremely responsive and helpful, not only our initial consultations, but in follow-ups 1 and 2 years later with the insurance company to ensure that they comply with their agreements (which they did), as well as a separate and only slightly-related inquiry about our health insurance. I always hear back from them very quickly, which is rare and greatly appreciated.

Jeff P. (Oklahoma)

After a very long and frustrating ordeal to keep my LTD payments coming I decided to seek assistance from and attorney. After much research and asking those in the legal profession Dell & Schaefer seemed to be the top choice. I reached out and Alex Palamara was the attorney assigned to my case. All I can say is the experience was outstanding. Both Alex and his Paralegal, Danielle Lauria were excellent to work with. They were very kind, concerned, understanding of my frustrations and treated me with the utmost respect. Communication was excellent with regular updates and telling me what I could expect in each stage of the process.

Alex was also very straight forward with what to expect and no pie in the sky promises or expectations were made. In the end we won our case and I believe it was solely due to their experience and knowledge of not only the laws but the insurance companies as a whole. I would highly recommend them and am very grateful for the help they afforded to me.

Chad B. (Illinois)

I originally spoke with 3 other long term disability lawyers about my case before contacting Dell and Schaefer. None of those law firms would take it. They said the chances of me winning was not good. After finding Dell and Schaefer online I spoke with one of the attorneys that has since left. He did take my case but later it was picked up by Rachel Alters. Rachel is amazing and a very intelligent attorney. She not only won my case but also was able to get my back pay for 6 months.

I also cannot say enough about Sonia Nogueira. Sonia was always quick to answer any of my questions. I would usually hear back from her within hours of sending her a email. I do not know where I would be if I hadn’t contacted them. My family and I cannot thank them enough. Don’t let an insurance company tell you they are not responsible for paying you. I paid them for 20 years monthly and they looked for any reason they could not to have to pay me when I needed my benefit. Thank you Rachel and Sonia for all you guys do.

Speak With An Attorney Now

Request a free legal consultation: Call 800-682-8331 or Email Us