Disability insurance can provide vital financial support if you suffer a short-term or long-term disability and are unable to work. Most employer-provided disability plans, however, are governed by the Employee Retirement Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and are usually tilted in favor of insurers, frequently denying workers disability benefits to which they are entitled. If you have been denied disability benefits, it is crucial to consult an experienced ERISA benefits attorney.
Stansberry Law, LLC routinely represents clients throughout the United States regarding all aspects of ERISA benefits claims, including:
- Short-term and long-term disability claim submissions
- Denied disability insurance claims
- Administrative appeals under ERISA
- Federal ERISA-based lawsuits
Founding attorney Amanda Stansberry has extensive experience pursuing disability benefit appeals and a proven history of helping disabled workers obtain the benefits they deserve, inside or outside of the courtroom. When you become our client, you will have peace of mind knowing that your disability benefits claim is in good hands.
What is an ERISA Appeal?
ERISA regulates employer-sponsored disability plans by setting guidelines and timelines for processing benefit claims. In the event that your benefit claim is denied, ERISA provides for an appeals process. Nonetheless, the law gives insurers an unfair advantage over disabled workers in disability appeals.
That’s where Stansberry Law, LLC comes in. Through the years, we have forged strong working relationships with all the major insurance carriers (e.g. MetLife, The Hartford, Life, Prudential, New York Life) which can mean the difference between having your disability appeal approved or denied. Knowing that an ERISA appeal can be a lengthy process with strict deadlines and complicated procedural rules, we will relieve your stress and worries by handling all the details.
It is important to note that ERISA regulations require “a full and fair review” of the claim and the adverse benefit determination. As such, your ERISA appeal must be reviewed by a different disability claim representative than the one who initially reviewed and denied the claim. In addition, the law requires at least one appeal be filed (or two depending on the terms of your disability policy) before you can file a lawsuit in federal court.
Our legal team knows that submitting a well-conceived ERISA appeal increases the likelihood that your claim will be approved. A strong appeal will also establish a comprehensive administrative record in the event that ERISA litigation becomes necessary — the court generally cannot review or consider any information that was not presented during the appeal.
At Stansberry Law, LLC we know precisely how to put you in the best position to win an appeal. Our legal team will work closely with you and your treating physicians to make sure your appeal is submitted with convincing medical information. Because each case is unique, we will also work with your doctor to prepare statements specific to your medical condition and occupation. When necessary, we may recommend additional medical testing to support your claim.
Additionally, we will consult a vocational expert to determine what skills you can and cannot perform due to your medical condition and limitations. Finally, we avail ourselves of medical research and studies to further support your claim and will work with you to prepare personal statements and statements from colleagues, family members, and friends to show how your condition impacts your daily activities.
Above all, we are committed to winning the appeal. If your initial ERISA benefits appeal is denied, we will explore all your options, whether pursuing a voluntary second appeal or ligitating your claim in federal court.
Because ERISA does not provide for a jury trial or witness testimony, your case will be decided by a judge usually based solely on his or her review of the administrative record. Nonetheless, we are fully prepared to take the insurance company to court and refute any arguments for denying your claim. We have a proven track record of achieving successful outcomes in disability insurance lawsuits and know how to leverage our trial skills to bring the insurance company to the negotiating table. If we are unsuccessful at the district court level, we will continue to fight for you in the appellate courts.
Call Our ERISA Appeals Attorney
If your short-term or long-term disability benefits claim has been denied, don’t go up against the insurance company alone. Insurers are armed with teams of powerful attorneys who know how to use ERISA to their benefit and deny claims. At Stansberry Law, LLC, we strive to resolve ERISA claims disputes through the appeals process and work to reach negotiated settlements with insurance companies.
Whether through appeals or litigation, we are committed to helping you obtain the benefits you deserve. We are keenly aware that being unable to work is an overwhelming financial burden, which is why we handle all ERISA claims on a contingency basis. This means that you will not pay any attorneys’ fees to us until we win your claim. If your ERISA benefit claim has been denied, you may be angry and confused and not know where to turn. Remember, we are here to help. Please contact our office today for a free evaluation of your case.