If you’ve called our office recently to ask about a disability claim, you may have had the pleasure of speaking to our newest employee, former Navy Intelligence Officer Ellen Bresnahan. Ellen was kind enough to take a moment to talk with us about her family, her career, and the work she’s doing now at the firm.
“I got into Navy Intelligence right out of college. It sounded like fun. I’d like to say I had this really inspirational, patriotic story of wanting to serve, but honestly Top Gun had just come out a month before I graduated and I thought, ‘That looks like fun.’”
“For a couple years I did aviation intelligence. I helped figure out where our planes should be flying and what they should be doing. After that, I had jobs where I helped train diplomats, supported various intelligence commands, and developed Navy Reserve training systems”
“My last assignment was in Moscow, Russia. We lived there for almost two years as part of a defense attaché. We would escort diplomats and generals who would come through. It was an interesting time to be there. One of those places I was very glad to go, very glad to be there, and very glad to leave.”
Ellen has three children who she loves dearly. Her oldest daughter is working as an EMT in North Carolina and applying to med schools. Her second daughter is studying drama at the prestigious New School in New York City, and her son is a freshman in high school who loves track and science olympiad.
In her spare time, Ellen likes to run (she completed the 10 mile Mount Vernon run) and she’s active in her local book club. “We say that we’re a supper club with a reading problem. Usually we remember to talk about the book.”
At BenGlassLaw, Ellen helps our clients navigate the murky waters of their disability case. She enjoys being in a position to help people, and likes fighting back against insurance companies who often seem more interested in paying legal fees than paying claims.
“It’s all people that need help and have no place to turn to, so when you can be that person for them, the reaction you get is ‘Oh my gosh! Thank you so much!’ That’s very rewarding.”
“These people have been denied their disability benefits, either short term or long term. The first thing we do is look at their denial letter. The insurance companies try to write it clearly but it’s so much information that it’s overwhelming. I think it’s hard for the average person to read through that letter. We never charge for reviewing that denial letter, so at the very least we can give you a plain language interpretation of, ‘Here’s why they claim you were denied.’
“Sometimes the insurance companies have crazy reasons for denying them. We have one client now where the insurance company claims his job is sedentary, but he’s a professional roofer! There’s always a paper trail of whether the insurance company did the wrong analysis, and if we represent you we have the authority to get those files. It’s a little bit like detective work.”
If you have a disability claim or have received a denial letter and are nervous about calling a law firm, Ellen has some words of encouragement. “The call is always free and the review of your denial letter is always free, so it never hurts to ask. We never charge you for anything that you haven’t agreed to, so there really is no downside to calling us and asking about your case. I’m excited to be here, and I’m happy to help!”