Your Source For Disability Information

Living with an invisible disabilityInvisible disabilities are characterized by symptoms that may not be noticeable to those unaffected, but what exactly constitutes an invisible disability? A person with an ID often suffers from debilitating symptoms including excruciating internal pain, fatigue, dizziness, weakness, cognitive dysfunctions, learning differences, mental disorders, and hearing and vision impairments. Those who are unaffected by this class of disability should not discount the suffering people with ID endure, as they are often fighting to mask the pain and other unwanted symptoms.

Examples of Invisible Disabilities:

Back and Spine Problems
Bipolar Disorder
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Cerebral Atrophy
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Lyme Disease

Living with and managing an invisible disability is a constant battle and unfortunately presents unique challenges for someone attempting to obtain disability benefits. Because of the great variety in symptoms and the difficulty in obtaining a diagnosis, many people suffering from an invisible disability are unable to work. Many disability claimants attempting to obtain long term disability benefits on their own are often met with application denials, filing appeals,unreasonably long delays, and other unethical insurance bad faith practices. Hiring an LTD attorney with extensive experience dealing with insurance companies can give you an advantage over their tactics.

What is ERISA? The Employment Retirement Income Security Act of 1974, otherwise known as ERISA, is a federal law that sets minimum standards for health care and retirement benefits for employees in the private sector. Although it does not require employers to provide any benefits, those who voluntarily do so must meet certain minimum standards.

ERISA thoroughly regulates minimum healthcare, retirement and other welfare benefit plans such as life and disability. ERISA also governs the management and transparency of these accounts. Since its deployment ERISA has been occasionally amended to protect workers in case of unexpected events such as job loss or those with preexisting medical conditions.

Although ERISA was originally constructed to protect employee benefits for group plan participants, this has not always come to fruition. While the majority of individuals are able to obtain long term disability benefits by filing a claim or a internal appeal, some policy holders may continue to be denied the benefits promised to them. A ERISA lawyer can assist you when you have exhausted all internal appeals and methods. Policy holders who are denied their benefits have the right to file a LTD appeal against the insurance company and have their case reviewed by a federal judge.

ERISA court trials differ from traditional trials in that there is no testimony from either party, only the materials in the case file will be reviewed. For this reason it is imperative that a experienced ERISA attorney handle and prepare your case. A lawyer who is thoroughly versed in all aspects of ERISA will be able to identify where it can apply to your case and increase your benefit payout. They will also commonly pay for the experts and doctors needed to prove the extent of your disabilities.

Many people are under the misconception that insurance companies work to help you. But as a for-profit company insurance companies employ their own lawyers to limit their obligation to you and minimize losses. Ensure that your benefits and retirement are protected by hiring a experienced ERISA attorney to handle your long term disability case.

Long Term Disability Law FirmWhat is the difference between long term disability and short term disability benefits?

Disability is considered by some experts to be the most important policy under the umbrella of insurance. When considering an injury or health condition that will take one away from their job, people become concerned with health insurance. However, health insurance only covers the medical portion of the tragedy. Disability insurance exists to protect and replace partial future wages in the event that one will become physically or mentally unable to work.

Short-term disability (STD) replaces a portion of an employee’s salary if a physician- documented injury or disability will prevent the policy owner from working. Most policies will cover 50% – 70% of wages. The policy generally begins after sick leave is exhausted and will go into effect for 10-26 weeks. Those who utilize STD will typically have injuries or conditions that are quickly treatable and have short recovery times, such as broken bones or simple surgical procedures.

Unlike STD, Long-term disability (LTD) does not go into effect until 90 days after the individual has been out of work, and in some cases 180 days depending on the insurance. Although it takes longer to kick in, LTD has a much longer lifespan than STD. Some will remain in effect until recovery or until the individual is able to learn a skill which will not be detrimental to their condition or any procedures that they had done. In fact, some plans will extend until the age of retirement. Similar to STD, LTD will usually cover between 50% and 70% of earnings, however some employers allow employees to purchase extra, which would allow the policy to cover 80% of wages.

If you have become injured or disabled, and are unable to work or complete normal daily routines, it may become difficult to pay bills and other expenses. Fortunately, the skilled long term disability lawyers at Burke, Harvey & Frankowski, LLC are ready to fight for the benefits you are entitled to. The LTD attorneys understand the importance of obtaining these benefits and work tirelessly to help disabled clients across the United States navigate through the sea of claims and appeals forms as efficiently as possible.