If you’re faced with a long term disability claim, chances are you’re exhausted by all of the fine print that went unnoticed when you first took out your insurance policy.
The last thing you want to hear about is yet another loophole in your policy, let alone one that has been aptly named the Exhaustion Requirement.
Under ERISA – the federal law that governs health insurance policies – there are certain items you much check off of your list in order to file suit in the unfortunate event that you require long term disability.
Under most policies, if your application for LTD benefits is denied, you’re required to go through a series of administrative appeals before you’re able to bring a federal suit against your insurance provider. This requirement was set in place in order to help minimize the number of frivolous ERISA claims, and to promote a consistent treatment of LTD claims.
To you, this requirement may make you feel like you’re being forced to suffer without LTD benefits while your insurance company fights over a never ending series of paperwork and appeals.
It is very important that you read your insurance plan now, before you’re stuck in a desperate situation, in order to fully understand what will be required of you should you have to file a claim in the future. The last thing you want is to have a lawsuit barred due to failure to comply with a hidden Exhaustion Requirement or other seemingly mundane step.
In short, we want you to take the following steps to protect yourself as soon as possible:
- READ YOUR POLICY
- Compile a list or timeline of all steps to take or deadlines to meet
- Read all correspondence you have received carefully, especially the fine print
- Re-check your timeline and update it accordingly as new correspondence is exchanged
- Make sure you comply with all requirements, no matter how inane they may seem
Finally, the most important step you should take is to seek help from a licensed attorney. At Wheeler, DiUlio, & Barnabei, our attorneys are waiting to help you review your insurance policy and make sure you are taking all of the right steps towards a just benefits award.
When it comes to your health, the stakes are too high for you to go at it alone. Let us help.