Sydney Long-Term Disability Lawyers Fighting for You!
If you or a loved one suffer a disability as a result of an injury, you must know by now that the system is largely set up to deny you from getting the full amount of benefits that you deserve.
Between denying benefits, delaying payments, or by going to all lengths to prove that an injury pre-existed before the accident, insurance companies use tricky tactics to reduce the payout to a sum that they think YOU will accept.
At NOVA Injury Law our team of long-term disability lawyers in our Sydney office are, first and foremost, compassionate individuals. We will go to any length to support our clients and their families to manage their disability and move their claim towards a maximized outcome as quickly as possible.
More often than not, families are seeking financial security. They want to feel secure in the knowledge that their long term disability benefits will be paid consistently and in full.
NOVA Injury Law is here to provide you with that safety net so you can sleep easy, knowing that you’ll be able to pay for the essentials like groceries, bills, rent and mortgages – not to mention the additional essentials you need to manage your injury. Things like physiotherapy, emotional therapy, access improvements to the house and the car, as well as the use of medical machinery.
Adding to our experience, we have a practicing emergency room physician, with special training in occupational medicine, consulting on our cases as required. Having this expertise built into our practice is an advantage that other law firms don’t have, and supports our team to build compelling case files for our clients with disability right from the very start.
Are Long-Term Disabilities Always Traumatic Injuries?
Many long term disability cases we see at NOVA Injury Law aren’t caused by traumatic injuries. Mental health conditions make up a large portion of long term disabilities in Nova Scotia, given their devastating impact on a person’s ability to earn income and lead a normal life.
Long term disabilities can also be seen as chronic illnesses (for example, multiple sclerosis, heart disease, chronic arthritis or diabetes), autoimmune diseases (e.g., psoriasis, lupus, vasculitis), neurological disorders, and degenerative disorders (like epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease or Alzheimers).
If you think you suffer from a long term disability, it’s important to speak with the team at NOVA Injury Law right away. Our team will assess your case, give you valuable information on qualifying factors for compensation claims, and discuss important next steps.
Unfortunately, Long-Term Disability Benefits Aren’t Always Granted
Even if you think you qualify for long term disability compensation, insurance providers might not necessarily share your view. We often see long term disability benefits denied for a number of reasons.
- Prior medical conditions: Depending on the insurance policy you hold, you may not qualify for long term disability benefits if you have a pre-existing medical condition that affects your ability to earn an income. While some insurance policies have an ‘elimination’ period, where prior medical conditions do not affect your long term disability claims if you have held the policy for a certain period of time. It’s best to ask with NOVA Injury Law to review your policy and advise you on the best next steps.
- Your medical condition isn’t classified as a ‘disability’: A common reason why long term disability claims are denied, is because the victim’s medical condition doesn’t align with the insurer’s definition of what constitutes a disability. In Nova Scotia, policies can vary greatly, and it’s important to check what specific medical conditions are classified as disabilities for your policy.
- Inadequate proof: Missing medical records and documentation, a lack of expert testimonies, inconsistent information and not following the correct treatment procedures can all lead to long term disability benefits being denied. It’s important to gather all necessary medical evidence, and any other documentation relevant to your disability, to present a clear case for why your disability merits compensation.
- Get in touch with NOVA Injury Law for a Free Case Review. We will look over your records, and compile all the relevant documentation to put forth a strong case for long term disability benefits.
“Totally Disabled” – What Does This Really Mean, and Why is it Important?
The term “Total disability” does not mean that you have to be totally incapacitated by your injury. In fact, the real world standard is much lower, referring generally to whether you are prevented from carrying out the essential functions of your employment or similar roles you could perform given your education, training, and experience.
Long-term disability insurance policies have standards to test whether you are “totally disabled”.
They are generally:
- Own Occupation definition: This standard considers a person totally disabled if they cannot perform the essential duties of their own occupation.
- Any Occupation definition: This standard considers a person totally disabled if they cannot perform the crucial duties of any occupation for which they are qualified.
- Activities of Daily Living (ADL) definition: This standard considers a person totally disabled if they are unable to perform certain activities of daily living, such as bathing, dressing, feeding, and toileting.
Remember, insurance agencies will do their best to establish either:
- That your injuries DO NOT AMOUNT to their definition of “total disability” OR
- That your injuries NO LONGER amount to their definition of “total disability” – this is generally around the two year mark after the date you sustained your injury.
NOVA Injury Law’s team of lawyers are backed by medical professionals who together build an accurate picture of the true impact your disability has on your ability to work.
Even better – our Principal Lawyer, Jeff Mitchell is adept at this area of law, so much so he wrote a 158 page guide on everything you need to know to win your disability insurance claim. You can check it out here – “The Must-Read Guide to Winning Disability Insurance”.
What Usually Happens Before a Person Will Seek a Lawyer’s Advice?
The vast majority of our work starts because one of two events occur. They are:
1.The injured person’s application for benefits is rejected by the insurance company
- The injured person’s benefits are cut-off or reduced after being approved previously.
When pursuing a matter for a person who is denied long term disability benefits, we look at the following:
- The insurance policy: to determine the terms and conditions of the policy and the basis for the insurer’s decision to deny benefits
- The medical evidence: we assess the medical evidence in support of the client’s disability claim. This may involve reviewing medical records, consulting with medical experts, and obtaining additional evidence as necessary. Does the long term disability affect the victims ability to perform their usual job tasks? Are they unable to work altogether?
- The insurer’s decision: Why was the application denied. This may include examining the insurer’s reasons for denying the claim, any relevant policy provisions, and any applicable legal standards.
Once we have evaluated these areas, we start to look at legal options. We may consider filing an appeal, negotiating a settlement, or even filing a lawsuit.
If a person’s benefits have been cut-off, we will review the reason for the cut-off. These are usually changes in the person’s medical condition or a change in the insurance policy’s terms and conditions.
Are Long-Term Disability Benefits Taxable?
Generally, if you pay the entire amount of the disability premium yourself, your disability benefits will be tax-free. This may bring your income while on disability closer to your current take-home pay. If your employer pays all or part of the disability premium, your disability benefits will be subject to income taxes.
What Do You Do if Your Long-Term Disability Benefits are Denied or Cut Off?
When a denial letter or benefits termination letter is received, an overwhelming fear may consume you. Feelings of abandonment and confusion are felt, and working through complex insurance arrangements over the phone with a faceless insurance consultant is the last thing you need.
It’s important to speak with a long term disability lawyer immediately, so they can guide you through the appeals process. NOVA Injury Law is here to help you through the process, and build a strong medical and legal case for your appeal.
If you have been denied long term disability benefits call NOVA Injury Law immediately.
These letters are a threat to your long term disability benefits and must be taken seriously. However, they are often vague and generic, citing a ‘lack of objective medical information’. The denial letter may indicate that your long term disability claim does not meet the threshold for “total disability” as defined by the insurance company.
Speaking with the team at NOVA Injury Law will give you clarity on what to do next. Whether you need to provide more medical evidence, documentation or other grounds for appeal. Once you have sorted out why you were denied, you can then attempt to overturn the unfavorable decision.
There are ways to appeal both a denial and a termination letter. First you need to photocopy the letter and email, fax or post a copy to our Sydney office as soon as you can – alternatively you can take a photo and SMS it to one of our lawyers.
Once we have received this, we will get to work right away to build you a case to take on the insurance company.
Although these cases are often complex it is recommended that you seek out a disability lawyer, and read “The Must-Read Guide to Winning Disability Insurance” available through our resources page lays out a step-by-step guide (along with tips) to successfully appeal a denial or termination and get your LTD benefits back.
Why is it Important to Contact NOVA Injury Law to Assist Your Long-Term Disability Insurance Case?
It’s important to note that most insurance companies are for-profit entities and may have a financial incentive to minimize the amount they pay out in disability insurance claims. They may use various tactics to deny or delay claims, such as requiring extensive documentation or disputing the severity of the disability.
This is where our experience in disability insurance claims is invaluable to prospective clients. We understand the evidence needed to successfully file a long term disability claim. We understand the mitigating factors and the importance of showing how your disability affects your current and future income. These are crucial elements that NOVA Injury Law will raise with your insurance company.
What is the Process for Determining Whether a Parent has a Claim?
We start with a Free Case Review – like we do for all areas of our expertise. This gives families a chance to consult with a lawyer free of charge to see what options they may have and what they can expect
From here, we advocate for you, and ensure that you receive the maximum benefits you are entitled to under your long term disability benefits plan or policy. Often we traverse complex claims processes to get there – something only an expert should have to do – given all the pitfalls set up to reduce your chances of maximizing your claim.
In addition, a long term disability lawyer can provide legal advice and guidance on the client’s options if their claim is denied.
We understand how critical it is for a person with disability to have financial security.
At NOVA Injury Law, we offer a no-win, no-fee guarantee – that means if we don’t win your case, you won’t pay a cent in legal fees.
Our team has a proven track record of success, securing millions of dollars in disability insurance benefits for our clients. We work tirelessly to ensure that your rights are protected and that you receive the maximum benefits you are entitled to under your policy.
Our lawyers are also part of the community in Sydney, NV – so we can work with professionals, community groups and volunteers all over the city to get you the support you need.
We understand the devastating impact of suffering an illness or injury that leads to a long-term disability. Know that you and your family are not alone and that our team of experts will make sure you have the absolute best shot at receiving a large settlement amount.
Call Our Sydney Long-Term Disability Lawyers Today!
Reach out to us for a Free Case Review, no-obligation consultation, and contingency fee agreement available for many types of claims.
For more information or to set up an initial consultation for a long term disability benefits case in Sydney, or elsewhere in Nova Scotia, you can reach us by calling 1-800-262-8104. Our team is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to support you and your loved ones learn about the right next step for your LTD claim.