Dentists are doctors of oral health who restore confidence in their patients. They often pay hefty insurance premiums to cover themselves and their business in case they are unable to work due to a disability. So why do insurers make it so hard for dentists to get their disability insurance claims approved?
In this article, we will discuss:
- Why insurers give high-income claimants the runaround;
- How to get a disability insurance claim approved; and
- How policyholders can get a free insurance policy evaluation to understand their rights better.
Why Is My Insurer Giving Me The Runaround?
The short answer is money. The amount of money that the insurance company will have to pay you as opposed to a lower-paying job such as a receptionist is substantial. They are trying to save themselves as much money as possible. To save money, they make the claim process extremely difficult for you. The insurance investigators will try many tactics to trip you up. They are hoping you will give up and abandon your claim.
Fortunately, we have experience handling insurance companies and have put together some tips to help you get your claim approved or win your case in court. This article will also give you an understanding of how underhanded insurance investigators can be to protect their assets.
Tips for Getting Your Long Term Disability Claim Approved
Tip #1 Support Your Claim with Strong Medical Evidence
Dentists do not usually have experience with paperwork or evidence needed to support a long-term disability claim. Your doctor may need to complete an attending physician statement. You also need to collect all the medical records from your treating physicians. Make sure they note your pain levels and functional limitations in your medical records. This may not be standard practice for your doctor, but this information is necessary to support your claim.
Tip #2 Try Not To Rush Back to Work
The second most important thing to remember is not to return to work too quickly. Dentists have often built a substantial practice with patients, staff, and other dentists depending on them, and you may be worried about losing all that you have built. However, it would be best to resist the urge to pull yourself back to work too quickly. You do not want to find yourself in court because you performed a procedure that you were not physically and mentally ready for.
Tip #3 Anticipate Surveillance
Many times, the insurance company will put you under surveillance. With a large claim like that of a dentist, you can bet on it! It is completely legal for an insurer to hire a private investigator. The investigator will stake out your house and may even talk to your neighbors about your activities. The insurer will then try to use that information to justify the denial or termination of your claim. All of your activities during the claim period must align with the limitations and restrictions you reported when filing your claim.
Tip #4 Don’t Forget About Social Media Surveillance
I have previously discussed the likelihood that social media accounts will be used to deny LTD claims. You may be tempted to spend some of your downtime on social media, but we suggest you either ensure your accounts are private or stay off social media entirely. Posting a picture of you walking your dog can be used against you by the insurance company.
Tips For Stay Organized During The LTD Claim Process
Applying for long term disability involves a considerable amount of paperwork. Maintaining a well-organized file of all your claim-related paperwork is crucial, especially if the claim is denied and you must file suit. Use a binder or filing cabinet to keep track of the following items:
- Your LTD insurance policy;
- All correspondence between you and your insurance provider;
- Medical certification outlining your inability to perform job functions;
- A record of all healthcare providers involved in your treatment, supplemented by letters stating that your condition hampers your ability to work; and
- Summaries of all discussions (phone or in-person) with insurance representatives, healthcare professionals, and your employer. To validate receipt, send copies of these summaries to everyone involved via certified mail.
For easy referencing, keep all your documents in chronological order. This will ensure that you have a comprehensive history of your claim.
Representation by an Experienced Long Term Disability Attorney
Dentists may find the LTD claim process to be quite daunting. Insurers often search for any justification to deny a claim. Claimants must supply the insurer with compelling medical evidence and avoid common mistakes that can destroy a disability insurance claim. Retaining a skilled disability lawyer can improve the likelihood that your claim will be approved.
Although based in Florida, the Ortiz Law Firm operates nationally and represents claimants throughout the US. We offer a no-obligation case evaluation if your claim has been denied or terminated. Call us at (888) 321-8131 to get help with your claim.
Request a Free Policy Evaluation
Many individuals unfamiliar with insurance policy language can easily misinterpret or fail to comprehend their disability policy. For those contemplating buying disability insurance or if you have recently acquired a policy, we offer our expertise in helping you understand the terms of your policy and identify any potential gaps in your coverage that could lead to a claim denial.
Areas of your policy that we will review include (but are not limited to):
- Limitations on benefits for mental and nervous disabilities; and
- Limitations on benefits for self-reported conditions.