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Litigating Disability Claims

Challenging a Long Term Disability Denial Means Filing a Complaint and Possibly Settling Out of Court

Once a short or long-term disability appeal has been denied, the only way to challenge the decision is to file a complaint in court. Assuming your disability insurance plan is governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA), your complaint will be filed in federal court. A judge will then decide if the insurance company’s actions were unreasonable.

ERISA Claims Are Different Than Other Insurance Disputes

Unlike other cases, you almost certainly will not have the opportunity to go to trial and prove your inability to work. Instead, a judge will review the information in the insurance file in order to determine if the insurance company had a good basis to deny your claim. In rare cases, the judge may be allowed to decide if, based on the evidence in the file, he believes you are disabled. Most often, though, the judge will not overturn the denial unless the insurance company’s conduct was downright unreasonable. Due to this high standard, it is crucial that you have representation from experienced disability attorneys who are familiar with ERISA’s procedural requirements and the courts.

You May Have the Opportunity to Settle Your Claim

It can take years before you get a final decision from the court. Not only is litigation time consuming but there is an element of risk. You never can be 100 percent certain what a judge will decide. In the best case scenario, a court will order the insurance company to start paying disability benefits. Still, the insurance company can stop paying your disability benefits in the future. For these reasons, settlement is appealing to some individuals. We have experience negotiating settlements with insurance companies so our clients get paid and never have to deal with the insurers again.

Hawks Quindel’s disability attorneys are experienced litigators, negotiators and counselors. We represent individuals at all stages of the disability claim process. Contact one of Hawks Quindel’s experienced disability attorneys for a free case evaluation to discuss your claim. In Madison, WI call (800) 610-0040 or (608) 257-0040. In Milwaukee, WI call (800) 236-3348 or (414) 271-8650, or send us an email.