3 Mistakes That Could Hurt Your ERISA Claim
An Employee Retirement Income Security Act plan, or ERISA, provides disability benefits when you are unable to work due to an impairment. When you apply for ERISA benefits, mistakes could result in your application being denied. At best, a mistake could result in your claim being delayed, which leaves you without income until you have corrected the issue. To prevent this, here are some claim mistakes to avoid.
Leaving Your Position Too Soon
When your claim is submitted, one of the factors that could play a role in whether or not you are eligible to receive benefits is the point at which you left your job. If you resigned from your position before a qualified doctor informed you that you were unable to medically work, your claim could be denied or delayed.
To prevent a denial, you need to consult with a qualified doctor and receive a diagnosis and treatment plan before making the decision to leave your position. With the doctor's recommendation to discontinue work, you are in a better position to receive benefits.
Even if your employer states that he or she does not feel you are able to work, do not resign your position until you have received a disability certification from a qualified doctor.
Failing to Properly Document Your Disability
Some claimants mistakenly believe that the only documentation they need to worry about are the forms that are provided by the insurance company. In actuality, you might need to provide supplemental documentation that can be used to help support your claim.
For instance, you should consider keeping a journal that details your daily health struggles. If you are still working, note any challenges you faced throughout the day with performing your duties with your disability.
You also need to ensure that your doctor is accurately documenting your illness. Review the ERISA policy with him or her so that the doctor is aware of what details the insurance company needs to review a claim.
Not Returning Documents By the Deadlines
While evaluating your ERISA claim, the insurance company likely will ask you to complete forms or provide additional documentation so that a decision can be made about your claim. If you fail to turn in the requested information by the deadline, your claim could be denied.
If the deadline is not reasonable in your opinion, contact the claims adjuster assigned to your case and request an extension. In every instance, you need to do your best to have your documentation in on time.
Work with an ERISA experienced attorney from a firm like Iler and Iler to avoid other mistakes that could hurt your claim.