Methods That Insurance Companies Use to Deny Disability Benefits
Insurance companies sometimes have a tendency to “drag their feet” when insureds file for long-term disability claims. The time it takes to validate the claim can often leave the client frustrated and financially suffering. Insurance companies often use the following methods to deny or lowball clients who are pursuing disability benefits.
Insurance companies will work aggressively to “investigate” a claim. They may hire a private investigator in order to verify your story. The investigator may even follow you in an effort to determine whether there are inconsistencies with your story. If your story does not add up, they will utilize tools – including cameras – in order to obtain reasons to deny your claim and “catch you” doing something outside of your restrictions.
Some insurers follow up their surveillance endeavors with a one-on-one interview, usually conducted at the residence of the individual making the claim. The interviewer generally will not show or inform the claimant of the surveillance video until they have locked in and recorded all of their answers. What the claimant does not know is that they are asking questions about restrictions and limitations that they already have proof have been exceeded. If at any time during the interview the claimant says something that does not correspond with the evidence in the surveillance footage, it could jeopardize the claim. Questions that are very specific, (“How long can you sit in a car?”, “How far can you walk your dog?”, “How often do you garden?”) usually are asked to show inconsistencies to justify a denial.
At Beedem Law we always tell our clients to tell the TRUTH.
Most people on disability would much rather be working. It is human nature to want to push yourself beyond what your body allows, but too often we end up paying for it with increased rest periods, more medications, hospital visits and medical bills. While the surveillance may find you working too hard on your lawn one day because you are feeling better, it will not see you laid up for the next few days because you overdid it.
Ask for help if you are in doubt!
In an ideal world, insurers would be eager to help you when an injury or disability occurs. Unfortunately that is not always the way it works.
Have you been denied a long-term disability claim?
If your insurer refuses to acknowledge your situation, contact Beedem Law. We are a Minnesota law firm that is very experienced in matters related to the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). We will fight to get your claim approved.