If you are a Fairfax County then, as part of your benefit package you have short and long term disability coverage. Lincoln Insurance Company manages these claims.
Here’s what you need to know, based on out extensive experience with FCPS teachers and Lincoln.
- Lincoln tends to be sloppy in handling the forms you send in. They will often force a teacher to send in the same forms over and over repeatedly.
- Lincoln will try to enforce its deadlines very tightly. If your benefits are denied, you can appeal, but Lincoln tends to want to close files quickly.
- Lincoln will contact your doctors to get records but sometimes fails to send the medical authorization you signed. Then, if they don’t get the records, they deny the claim. Go figure.
- Lincoln won’t tell you that the reason they didn’t get the records on time is that they failed to send the right documents to the doctor - we've discovered that over and over after we get involved
- Lincoln will try to dissuade you from getting older records, even if you have a chronic condition. Get and submit the records!
- What you can send to Lincoln is not limited to doctor records. If you can get a doctor or even a friend to write a narrative explaining your condition, that can prove to be helpful.
- If a doctor writes “my patient is obviously disabled” Lincoln will not approve the claim unless the doctor backs up that statement with good recordkeeping
- Loyalty doesn’t matter. No longer how long you have been employed with FCPS, your claim will be treated the same. FCPS leadership doesn't seem to get involved in these disputes.
- Nothing oral counts. If a claims rep tells you something, confirm it in writing. Mail a letter, don’t just email. (Email just might get “lost.”)
- Use an experienced disability attorney. All the marbles are in Lincoln's corner in these cases.