An Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon is considered the highest paying and the most skilled in the dental profession. Not only does an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon have to be trained in dental surgery, but they also handle anesthesia, which means they are trained for that as well. According to CNBC, an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon is the third highest paying profession in America. Despite their highly specialized profession, many Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons find it very difficult to get their long term disability claim approved.
In this article, we will explore the following:
- Why it’s so difficult to file for disability as an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon;
- Tips to make your claim undeniable; and
- How you can obtain a professional evaluation of your disability insurance policy.
Why It’s So Difficult to File For Disability as an Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons have a highly specialized skill set that requires them to be in peak physical and mental condition to avoid making a potentially life-threatening mistake. So when an oral surgeon is disabled, why does the insurance company make it so hard to get a claim approved?
One simple reason – money. Because the insurance company is looking at your case from a financial standpoint, they look at how much money it will cost them to provide you with benefits throughout your illness or disability. The longer it could potentially take you to get back to work, the less likely they will approve your claim.
In addition to your regular salary, you may have a rider that helps recover what you have lost during your illness or injury. If you own your oral surgery practice, this rider will help you offset the loss of patients you had before you were injured.
For example: if you are involved in a car wreck and spent two years recovering from your injuries, your patients have had to seek medical attention from another provider; this means your income will be much less than before you were injured. A recovery rider will help support you while you rebuild your business.
Four Tips to Help You Create a Solid Claim
Tip #1 Gather Strong Medical Evidence
Oral surgeons may be unfamiliar with the medical paperwork needed to file for long term disability. Collect all the medical evidence from your doctors that are treating your disability. Be sure that the doctors are noting pain levels on your chart, as this is not always common practice, but you will need this for your claim.
Oral surgeons usually have a busy daily workload and often spend a reasonable amount of time working out each week to stay healthy. During the recovery period from their disability, this may not be an option. The excessive amount of rest needed to recover can be long and take a toll on mental health. When seeking treatment for depression, be sure to include those medical records as well.
Tip #2 Anticipate Surveillance
A large claim, like that of an oral surgeon, will be under surveillance. Surveillance is completely legal. During the surveillance period, an investigator will stake out the claimants house, take to nearby neighbors about daily activities and try to use that information against the claimant in court; This is why it is imperative to not rush back into exercise routines or anything else that is very strenuous on the body during the claim period.
Tip #3 Stay Off Social Media
There is a high probability that any social media accounts will be monitored. As an oral surgeon, your work schedule probably does not allow for social media. However, when you are at home with nothing to do but rest, you may be tempted to start an account. We suggest staying off social media entirely during the claim period. The insurance investigator will try to use social media accounts to deny your claim.
Tip #4 Do Not Try to Go Back to Work Too Fast
The amount of time spent recovering from a disability can be very dull and feel unproductive to an oral surgeon. The change from a very active schedule to weeks and months of rest can feel like a prison sentence. Oral surgeons must resist the urge to go back to work too early. When an oral surgeon pushes themselves back into work before their body is ready physically and mentally, they are in danger of making a mistake that could cause more injury to their patients and land them in court.
Request a Free Policy Evaluation
If you are considering purchasing a disability insurance policy or have recently purchased a policy, we will help you understand what you are entitled to and whether there are deficiencies in your coverage that could lead to a denied claim. It is easy for individual policyholders who are not trained to read insurance policies to misread or misunderstand the disability policy. As part of our evaluation, we will explain what everything means to you in your situation.
Some of the aspects of your policy we will review include:
- Total versus residual disability;
- Own occupation versus any gainful occupation;
- Mental and nervous disability benefit limitations; and
- Self-reported conditions benefit limitations.
Fill out the form below to submit your request, and please allow 5 business days to receive your free Policy Evaluation Report.
Oral surgeons will find it difficult to get a long term disability claim approved. Due to the cost of the payout, the insurance company will use lots of tactics to deny the claim. Use our tips listed above to help get your claim approved.
Using an experienced disability attorney will help you protect yourself against insurance investigators. The Nick Ortiz Law Firm is based in Florida but represents claimants across the country. Receive a free consultation by calling (888) 321-8131 with no obligation. We can help you evaluate your claim to determine if you will be able to access Long-Term Disability Benefits and how to move forward with the process.