Disability Claimants Must Seek Timely and Adequate Care to Secure Full Benefits
Chicago Disability Lawyers: Helping You When You Need it Most
If you’re suffering from a disability and are thinking about submitting a claim for benefits to your private disability insurer, or have already submitted a claim and had it denied, delayed, or otherwise mishandled, then you may be feeling somewhat overwhelmed. In the wake of a serious disability, it’s quite common to be “financially squeezed” due to the cost of treatment and the loss of income from being unable to work.
Given the emotional and financial burdens experienced by many disabled policyholders, it’s rather common for such individuals to delay their treatment, or to simply distance themselves from the procedural hassles that accompany a full and adequate recovery.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the considerations — with regard to timeliness and adequate care — that disabled policyholders should keep in mind as they move forward.
Timeliness Can Be Confusing
Private disability insurance policies can vary quite significantly from plan-to-plan, but as a general rule, all policyholders may submit their claim for benefits as soon as they have been impaired enough not to work.
Suppose that you are a policyholder in a long-term disability insurance plan that only provides benefits if your disability has lasted for at least a year (or if the disability is expected to last for at least a year), then you may submit a claim for benefits as soon as you have stopped working. It’s not necessary that you have a record of “not working” due to the disability — all that is required is that you present evidence that shows you are incapable of working for the requisite length of time.
Simply put: do not artificially delay the processing of your benefits claim. As soon as you have been rendered disabled, we encourage you to contact a disability lawyer and begin the process of submitting your claim.
- Related Article: 5 FAQs About Private Disability Insurance Claims
Adequate Care Must Be Sought
It’s worth noting that if you have been disabled, whether due to an injury, illness, or other condition, then you must make reasonable efforts to mitigate your losses. Failure to do so could lead to your insurer denying your claim. Reasonable efforts generally requires that the policyholder seek out timely and adequate medical treatment for their disability, and even rehabilitative services.
For example, if you have been involved in a car accident and you suffer a spinal injury as a result, then it’s possible that your disability (i.e., the impairments) could be resolved through proper treatment and rehabilitation. If you fail to meet with your physician regularly for treatments, or you avoid rehabilitation altogether, then your disability might be extended or worsened, and the insurer will almost certainly try to avoid paying out benefits.
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Bryant Legal Group, P.C. is a boutique insurance litigation firm based out of Chicago and representing insurance policyholders in disputes with their insurers. Our attorneys have decades of experience litigating a variety of insurance disputes, including those that involve the denial (or other mishandling) of disability benefits due to procedural issues, or due to a purported failure to mitigate losses.
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