Disability Insurance Claims Litigation: Practical Guide in 2017 & Beyond
Over the past years, businesses and organizations, both in the U.S. and in Canada, have been facing the challenges brought by the proliferation of disability insurance claims litigation. The rise in number of claims and claim denials, under both employer-sponsored group policies and individual policies, has driven an increase in the number of lawsuits filed. Employers, benefit plan sponsors, insurers, and claimants alike have been adversely impacted by the burdens of litigation.
Listen as a panel of distinguished professionals and thought leaders organized by The Knowledge Group bring the audience to a road beyond the basics of Disability Insurance Claims, with an emphasis on cost-containment, practical approaches, and workable solutions. They will provide an overview of the legal and regulatory framework of Disability Insurance Claims Litigation in the U.S. and in Canada. Speakers will also provide an in-depth analysis of the fundamentals as well as key issues and developments surrounding this significant topic.
- Disability Insurance Claims: U.S. and Canadian Perspectives
- Challenges and Difficulties
- Identifying Dos and Don'ts
- Strategies for Litigating Disability Claims
- Scope and Limitations
- Litigation Costs and Risks
- Recent Court Decisions
- How to avoid/minimize a claim denial, with the best NC/GR (non group) contractual wording
- Trends, Developments and Update
Susan B. Grabarsky, Trial Lawyer
- Introduction and overview of the types of disability insurance policies – individual disability income policies, group long-term disability (“LTD”) through employer, group LTD other than through employer, long-term care and critical illness policies, credit disability, mortgage disability, etc.
- The fork in the road when litigating disability insurance cases: Why it is critically important for counsel to identify whether the case is ERISA-preempted, and the effect of preemption on litigation.
- Bases for ERISA preemption: a quick overview of U.S. statutory and case law.
- Cost/benefit analysis when contemplating litigation: how to calculate damages in a disability insurance case, the various type of damages available in ERISA and non-ERISA cases, with practical advice re: actual offsets and potential offsets and valuation of future benefits.
Michael W. DeWitt, Attorney
DeWitt Law, LLC
- Discovery in both an ERISA–usually limited to the claim file–and non-ERISA context.
- Claims people can do on the front end to help defend the decision if a lawsuit gets filed including use of physician/nurse file reviews, independent medical evaluations and surveillance and how courts view those
- Eliminating discretionary review in ERISA cases, both statutorily and by insurance commissioner edict.
Larry Schneider, Disability Insurance Specialist
Disability Insurance Resource Center
- Understanding a NC/GR policy’s contract and how the wording will/can impact a claim
- Definitions of Total Disability ((6)
- Definitions of Residual/Proportionate/Partial disability ( trigger: loss of income /time and duties)
- Terminology (elimination period, presumptive etc.
- Options (COLA, Residual, ABE, FIO, Social Security Disability, Catastrophic, Return of Premium etc.)
- Dual Occupation
- Mental and Nervous claims (24-60 month limitation and longer)
- Sickness: manifest vs. contracted
- Age 65 and beyond (claims/premium/options)
- Premium (level/graded/step)
- GR vs. NC
- IDI vs. Group (22 deficiencies/ definitions/ premium/options ERISA etc.)
Helen D.K. Friedman, Partner & Leader, Insurance & Risk Management
Miller Thomson LLP
- Addressing Canadian law angles to the material
Who Should Attend:
- Carriers, Insurers and Claimants
- Insurance Lawyers
- Insurance Companies
- Medical Professionals
- Claims Professionals
- Disability Consultants
- Vocational Experts
- Independent Medical Examiners
- Risks Managers
Helen D.K. Friedman offers her clients expertise, value, innovation, and a wealth of experience in a focused practice on the defence of first-party insurance claims. Helen has built trusted industry relationships by representing insurers and providing strategic and sound technical advice in statutory accident benefits, coverage disputes, litigation, and life and disability claims in the courts, regulatory tribunals, private arbitrations and mediations, and across the boardroom table. She is a leader in Miller Thomson’s insurance industry practice.
Helen D.K. Friedman offers her clients expertise, value, innovation, and a wealth of experience in a focused practice on the …
Susan B. Grabarsky is a Trial Lawyer at DarrasLaw in California, where she has evaluated, litigated, and resolved thousands of ERISA disability insurance cases. She represents disabled claimants exclusively, though she is often consulted by employers, unions, and medical providers on behalf of policyholders in need of help. Her practice is focused on individual and group long-term disability, life, and long-term care insurance actions in state and federal court. Prior to becoming a lawyer, she worked as a cost-containment analyst for insurance companies and large self-insured employers in California. Given her legal and industry experience, she is frequently invited to write and speak on ERISA, insurance bad faith, and disability law topics.
Susan B. Grabarsky is a Trial Lawyer at DarrasLaw in California, where she has evaluated, litigated, and resolved thousands of …
Mike DeWitt’s practice is devoted solely to commercial litigation at both the trial and appellate court levels, and before regulatory agencies. He represents small and medium-sized businesses in contract disputes, business torts such as tortious interference with contracts or business relationships, and employment matters, including discrimination allegations and disputes over non-compete agreements. In addition, he maintains a broad insurance defense litigation practice including life, health and disability matters, ERISA, bad faith, personal and advertising injury, intentional torts, property damage, catastrophic personal injuries and professional malpractice. Mike also writes extensively on insurance, employment and commercial legal issues, blogs at Mike DeWitt Insurance Law and is the co-author of the Disability Insurance section in Volume 8 of the New Appleman on Insurance Law Library Edition treatise.
Mike DeWitt’s practice is devoted solely to commercial litigation at both the trial and appellate court levels, and before regulatory …
LARRY SCHNEIDER is a disability insurance specialist, with over 45 years of hands on experience, exclusively specializing in disability insurance.
Over the years, over 50 disability related articles have been published in many of the trade magazines (including, “The American College’s “Forensic Examiner” etc.), lectures to many of the nation’s leading associations, CPA’s etc. and has appeared on television talking about contractual differences between policies offered by the insurance industry as well as being a panelist for a litigation conference.
In addition, he is an expert witness/consultant for DI claims which have been inappropriately denied and a national resource for hard to place insurance applicants, as well as a national source for application of business and individual standard cases.
He has also has authored, “The Encyclopedia of Disability Income Insurance” and “The Anatomy of Denied Disability Insurance Claims” manuals,
He has also helped the American College, substantially rewrite their, “Essentials of Disability Income Insurance” manual and has been a guest speaker at the MDRT’s 2013 convention and has appeared in many webinars.
Prior to his insurance career, he headed up a dept for one of the big 8 CPA firms, doing analytical studies on behalf of their clients.
Additional information regarding his brokerage; Disability Insurance Resource Center and his full CV, can be seen by visiting his website: www.di-resource-center.com.
Schneider can also be contacted via E-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org, or via his toll free number: 800-551-6211
LARRY SCHNEIDER is a disability insurance specialist, with over 45 years of hands on experience, exclusively specializing in disability insurance. …
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About Miller Thomson LLP
Miller Thomson is built to provide the most comprehensive Canadian business and legal help. The scale of your project is never an issue. We help businesses of every size, entrepreneurs and individuals. We work with not-for-profit organizations as well as financial institutions and governments.
Our mastery of Canadian law is available to domestic and international clients alike.
We are close to 550 lawyers, deeply rooted in communities across Canada. Some would call that “mid-sized” but in truth, we are perfectly Canadian-sized, with 12 strategically placed offices in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Regina, London, Kitchener-Waterloo, Guelph, Toronto, Vaughan, Markham and Montréal.
Our enthusiasm for Canada and Canadian law shows in everything we do.
DarrasLaw is the nation’s largest disability insurance practice representing policyholders. It provides free policy analysis, free case evaluation, and free claim assistance to thousands of disabled workers every year. The firm has represented disabled individuals from all walks of life, including high-profile athletes, entertainers, professionals, and blue-collar employees. DarrasLaw is based in California, but handles individual and group long-term disability, life, and long-term care insurance matters nationally.
About DeWitt Law, LLC
DeWitt Law’s practice is focused on insurance and ERISA litigation; labor and employment litigation; and commercial and business litigation and provides businesses both small and large the expertise and resources they need to evaluate legal issues both prior to and after the filing of a lawsuit. While most of those involved in litigation would obviously rather avoid it, it is unfortunately a fact of life in business and DeWitt Law has experienced litigation counsel that understands not only trial practice, but also how to successfully navigate settlement negotiations and properly evaluate the relative strengths and weaknesses of each parties’ positions.
About Disability Insurance Resource Center
As the nation's leading disability insurance specialist, claims consultant/expert witness, exclusively specializing in income protection disability insurance since 1972, we can help you to get you the best coverage possible.
We represent all of the disability insurance carriers and with "one stop shopping", can provide an insightful and convenient experience for all of your needs.
Even if you have been previously turned down, or believe you are uninsurable, we can help get you the coverage you need.