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Recent Blog Posts

No Bad Faith Damages In ERISA Disability Claims

When an insurance company denies a group disability claim without an examination by a doctor or even a phone call to the claimant’s treating physician, we are often asked, “Isn’t that bad faith?”  Often, the answer is yes.  Unfortunately, when you have coverage under your employer’s group Short Term Disability or Long Term Disability benefit […]

Are Disability Insurers Allowed to Use Drone Surveillance on Disabled Claimants?

As technology changes, insurance companies are changing their surveillance tactics.  Recently, a client of mine reported seeing a drone hovering over his yard.  We have reason to believe his disability insurance company was conducting drone video surveillance.  Are disability insurance companies allowed to do drone surveillance with a flying camera? This is not a unique […]

Veterans – Beware of the “Implicit Denial Rule” in VA Claims!

Earlier this year, a federal appeals court issued a ruling that could impact unknowing veterans who filed claims at different times when the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) only decides some of the claims in a written decision.  In Cogburn v. McDonald, 809 F.3d 1232 (Fed. Cir. 2016), the court decided an appeal involving a […]

State Law Does Not Change Who the Beneficiary is Under an ERISA Life Insurance or Pension Plan

Group life insurance and pension plans offered through an employer have different rules about who gets the benefits after someone dies.  Many states have laws that attempt to control who may be the beneficiary of a life insurance policy or retirement benefit.  States often try to regulate this probate or divorce law, but the federal […]

Erectile Dysfunction and VA Disability – Diabetes and Other Causes

Many veterans who have diabetes, also suffer from some degree of Erectile Dysfunction (“ED”). If your diabetes is service connected (because of exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam, for example), the ED condition should be rated as secondary to the primary service connected condition.  ED may also be service connected as a secondary condition to […]

Is There a Grace Period in Florida To Pay Your Life Insurance Premiums Late?

Every state has different, though similar, law that applies when someone does not pay their life insurance premium on time.  You have to look at the law of the state that applies to your life insurance policy (usually the state in which the policy was delivered).  In Florida, there is a 30 day grace period […]

Does a Life Insurance Company Have to Give Written Notice of Cancelling a Life Insurance Policy for Non-Payment of Premium?

Premium notices are a longstanding custom in the insurance industry.  However, the practice of providing notice by itself generally does not bind an insurer to doing so, nor does it alter an insured’s duty to pay.  However, when an insurer has the practice of giving notice of payments for a length of time that leads […]

Does Your Life Insurance Policy Require That a Notice of Premium Lapse Be Sent to a Secondary Address Before Termination?

One of the most common ways that life insurance companies avoid claims is to terminate coverage when someone fails to pay their premium.  This is called “lapse,” and a policy may be canceled for failing to pay the premium.  However, in some states, life insurance companies have to send a premium notice to a secondary […]

Group Life Insurance Lawsuit Dismissed Where Deceased Lost Coverage Due to Lay Off Before Their Death

A New York federal court dismissed a life insurance lawsuit where the insurance was obtained through an employer group, but the deceased was laid off and lost the coverage 3 months before he died.  The lawsuit was filed by Farone and Son Funeral Home, because the survivor who was the beneficiary of the life insurance […]

It is not the diagnosis, but the symptoms that are disabling.

For many people that file a Short Term Disability (STD) or Long Term Disability (LTD) claim, they believe that having a disease or injury with a label from a doctor is enough to prove they are disabled.  It is not.  Simply because a doctor has given you a diagnosis – no matter what it is […]


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