We recently looked at a case for a potential client. He had disability insurance through his employer. (This means that all claims are governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act - ERISA).
His initial claim was denied. After that he had 180 days to appeal his denial back to his insurance company.
He sought out a lawyer who advertised that he handled "insurance claims."
The lawyer did the appeal but that was not successful. After that the potential found my long term disability book on Amazon, read it and called us.
After an intial meeting, the potential client described his situation as an "LTD nightmare."
You see, his "insurance lawyer" had charged him over $15,000 to do his "appeal." The much of the billing involved such matters as "researching ERISA" and "researching disability claims."
In other words, the potential client was paying the lawyer to learn ERISA long-term disability claims.
To top it off, the "appeal," which was just a letter re-arguing the facts, was done so poorly that the guy was never going to have a chance to win.
(After an appeal you can file suit in federal court if you are insured under your employer's plan. There is no trial - the only thing the court is going to review is the record you made in your claim and in your appeal)
I couldn't help this guy.
If your disability insurance claim has been denied you need an experienced ERISA attorney to handle your appeal.
In the Northern Virginia/DC area, there are only three (besided our firm) that you should be looking at: