These Documents Are Vital To Your ERISA Disability Claim
My name is Brandon Osterbind. I am an injury and disability attorney in Central Virginia and I help people whose long-term disability claims have been denied. And certain documents are vital to your long-term disability claims. So let’s talk about what you should provide to your insurance company when you apply for long-term disability benefits.
Your medical records
The first thing you need is a complete grouping of all of your medical records from all of your treating healthcare providers. You must have all of these so that you can provide them to the insurance company. And if you don’t do that, then the insurance company is going to deny your claim and say there’s a lack of medical evidence.
A written narrative from your physician
The second thing you need to provide is a written narrative from your physician. Your doctor has to provide a physician’s statement that details your treatment, how you developed the condition that you have, and why you can’t work.
The insurance company needs to know why you were able to work on May 5th but not on May 6th. And that’s the important question. And it’s a question that you need to be able to answer. Not only do you need to be able to answer it but your doctors need to be able to answer that question as well.
So it’s important to provide a complete grouping of all of your medical records. And it’s also important to get a medical narrative or a physician’s statement from your doctor. This needs to detail your condition, your treatment, your expected treatment in the future, and how your symptoms affect your ability to work.
Your own statement
And the next thing you need to produce is a statement of your own. A lot of times in these ERISA disability claims and the appeals, you will never have an opportunity to stand in front of a judge or a jury and testify.
Your version of your life will never see the light of day unless you write it down or you record it. There has to be some medium of you telling your story in your claim. You need to have the opportunity to tell the insurance company exactly what you’re feeling, and why it affects your ability to work.
Witness statements and affidavits
The last thing that is usually helpful in long-term disability claims are witness statements or witness affidavits. Let’s say you have friends or coworkers who would be able to write down a list of who you were before the disabling condition struck you or before the accident that caused you to be unable to do your job ,or any job for that matter.
Those statements by your coworkers, friends and family are very important because they are external validating factors that will justify the insurance company in awarding you benefits.
And it will make it harder for them to deny your benefits because now there are other people who don’t stand to gain anything, and they’re vouching for your credibility. They’re saying that, yes, you were once able to do these things but, no, now you cannot do the same things that you were doing before.
Those are just a handful of documents that are vital to your long-term disability claim. And if you don’t have those things, it’s going to be very difficult to win your claim. And it will also be very difficult to win an appeal when your claim is denied. I hope this has been helpful.
If you have questions
If you have any questions about the documents that you should submit with your claim, give us a call or send us an email. I’d be happy to sit down with you, chat about your specific situation and provide you with a strategy to win your claim and to stay on claim as long as you are disabled.