If you receive long term disability benefits, please keep in mind that your insurance company can terminate your monthly payment for any number of reasons. You need to be familiar with the most common reasons that insurance companies cancel long term disability benefits so that you can continue to receive them for as long as you remain disabled. A great first step is reading over your particular plan and checking your policy’s summary plan description and the policy itself. For more information on why your insurance company may cancel your long term disability benefits, please keep reading, then contact an experienced long term disability denial attorney today. The following include some of the most common reasons insurance companies terminate long term disability benefits:
Time limitation on mental and chronic conditions
Many policies contain a twenty-four-month limitation on disabilities arising from mental, nervous and psychological impairments. The insurance company may limit you to twenty-four months of benefits if you have the following conditions:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder
- Chronic fatigue syndrome, or
- A similar impairment
Some policies may apply this limitation to arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, back pain and disabilities stemming from alcohol or drug abuse.
Failure to apply for Social Security Disability Benefits
If an insurance company approves you for long term disability benefits, your policy likely requires you to apply for Social Security disability insurance benefits. They do this in order to offset some of the costs of your payments. Failure to file a claim with the Social Security Administration could result in your insurance provider terminating your benefits.
Failure to continue treatment
Generally, long term disability policies require you to submit periodic proof of your continuing disability. This can consist of an annual re-certification by your doctor that you remain disabled or a requirement that you attend regular medical examinations. If you stop seeing a doctor, the insurance company may interpret your lack of treatment as proof that your condition has improved and, thus, necessitate termination of benefits.
Discovery of activities by surveillance
Your long term disability insurer may hire a surveillance team to track you for several days and document you acting in a manner inconsistent with your claimed disability. They can discontinue your benefits if they determine your condition has improved.
Shifting definition of disability after 24 months
More often than not, long term disability policies contain a provision that changes the meaning of disability after twenty-four months. Once that time period elapses, the insurance provider will narrow its definition to the ability to perform any occupation, as opposed to your own occupation.
If you have any further questions, speak with one of our long term disability insurance attorneys today.
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If you or someone you know is looking to receive long term disability benefits, contact Walker & Hern for a free consultation.