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.