Unum Approves Long Term Disability Application to a Program Manager

Our client, a high level Program Manager for a large international aeronautics company, was involved in an automobile accident that resulted in physical and emotional injuries, which impacted her ability to meet the demands of her job. Prior to hiring our office she filed her application for short term disability benefits under her employer’s disability insurance plan with Unum. From the onset of her short term disability claim she felt attacked, belittled and scrutinized by Unum on a constant basis. It was the rude behavior exhibited by her claims manager and her mistrust of Unum that lead her to Attorneys Dell & Schaefer.

When she first contacted our office she spoke with Attorney Stephen Jessup and discussed her concerns with how Unum was behaving as it related to her short term disability claim. Despite the fact that Unum had issued benefit checks our client relayed to Attorney Jessup how every communication seemed adversarial and veiled with threats of a claim denial, and how her benefit checks were continually late. The stress caused by Unum was overwhelming and for our client it was hard enough for her to deal with the injuries she sustained from the accident, let alone this added stress from Unum. In order to ensure her claim was paid properly and to avoid having to deal with Unum directly, she hired our office to handle her claim on a monthly basis.

When Attorney Jessup first took over the monthly claim handling he realized that Unum did not have all of the applicable medical information with which to assess our client’s claim for disability benefits. To address these concerns Attorney Jessup obtained records from all of our client’s doctors in order to present as clear a picture of her restrictions and limitations. Additionally, Attorney Jessup reached out to our client’s main treatment providers to obtain medical condition specific questionnaires prepared by Attorney Jessup to further strengthen restrictions and limitations. Concerned about the transition to long term disability and the fact that Unum was ignoring our client’s physical medical problems Attorney Jessup sent her for a functional capacity examination in order to obtain objective evidence of our client’s functional restrictions and limitations as they would relate to her ability to perform in a workplace.

Armed with all of our client’s records and properly documented evidence of impairment Attorney Jessup was able to secure all of our client’s short term disability benefit through the end of her short term disability term.

Long Term Disability

Prior to the end of our client’s short term disability period Unum began its review of her entitlement to long term disability benefits. Historically, short term disability benefits are easier to secure than long term disability benefits, due in large part to the underwriting and funding of the respective disability policies. However, given Unum’s aggressive requests for information and constant threats of claim denials and deadlines to provide information throughout the period of short term disability it was clear that a fight was to be expected from Unum as they processed her claim for long term disability benefits.

Despite the information provided in support of the short term disability claim Unum’s long term disability department was focusing its attention on the mental health aspects of our client’s claim in an attempt to limit payment of benefits to a maximum of 24 months of benefits due to Mental Health conditions. Despite documented proof of physical restrictions and limitations by way of diagnostic tests and the FCE, after delaying as much as legally possible Unum advised Attorney Jessup that it was approving our client’s claim for long term disability benefits but in doing so determined that the only condition preventing her from working was her mental health condition.

Unum intends to limit our client’s claim to 24 month of benefits. This decision is all the more frustrating considering that under the terms of the policy our client is only entitled to 36 months of benefits! The claim determination goes to show the lengths Unum will go to in an attempt to avoid paying a claim.

For Attorney Jessup and our client, the first battle for long term disability benefits was won – our client was receiving benefits, but the fight is by no means over as Attorney Jessup continues to attack Unum’s position that her disability is only the result of a mental health condition.

Is Unum Fighting Your Claim?

Unum’s actions, as set forth above, are unfortunately very common. If you have a claim for disability benefits with Unum and are experiencing any of the above problems, or you have any questions about your claim please do not hesitate to contact our office and speak to one of our disability insurance attorneys.

Questions About Hiring Us

Do you help Unum claimants nationwide?

We represent Unum clients nationwide and we encourage you to contact us for a FREE immediate phone consultation with one of our experienced disability insurance attorneys.

Can you help with a Unum disability insurance policy?

Our disability insurance lawyers help policy holders seeking short or long term disability insurance benefits from Unum. We have helped thousands of disability insurance claimants nationwide with monthly disability benefits. With more than 40 years of disability insurance experience we have helped individuals in almost every occupation and we are familiar with the disability income policies offered by Unum.

How do you help Unum claimants?

Our lawyers help individuals that have either purchased a Unum long term disability insurance policy from an insurance company or obtained short or long term disability insurance coverage as a benefit from their employer.

Our experienced lawyers can assist with Unum:

  • ERISA and Non-ERISA Appeals of Disability Benefit Denials
  • ERISA and Non-ERISA Disability Benefit Lawsuits
  • Applying For Short or Long Term Disability Benefits
  • Daily Handling & Management of Your Disability Claim
  • Disability Insurance Lump-Sum Buyout or Settlement Negotiations

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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