Does a claimant seeking disability need to prove the cause of disability to qualify for benefits? According to a recent federal decision from Georgia, the answer is no. Arthur Lesser IV, the plaintiff in Lesser v. Reliance Standard Life Insurance Co., 2019 WL 2416926 (N.D. Ga. June 4, 2019), worked as a software engineer for […]
Mental vs. Physical DisabilitiesBack to Insights
Does working after suffering an injury invalidate a subsequent disability insurance claim? According to a recent U.S. District Court ruling from Florida, the answer is no. In Kaviani v. Reliance Standard Life Insurance Co., 2019 WL 1759245 (M.D. Fla., March 27, 2019), Kia Kaviani, a dentist, sustained neck injuries in a car accident in 2012. […]
In recent years, there has been greater recognition of post-traumatic stress disorder, commonly referred to as PTSD. Many veterans returning from overseas conflicts experience PTSD, but the condition is not limited to former military. PTSD may occur following a significant injury or psychological shock and results in persistent mental or emotional distress. According to the […]
DeBofsky, Sherman & Casciari attorney William Reynolds recently won a significant victory on behalf of one of the firm’s clients. In Watson v. Reliance Standard Life Ins. Co., 2017 WL 5418768 (N.D. Ill. November 14, 2017), the court overturned a disability insurer’s finding that Cheryl Watson suffered from a psychiatric impairment; thus, her benefits were limited […]
Nearly all group long-term disability insurance policies limit the duration of benefit payments for psychiatric conditions to 24 months, while disabilities due to physical impairments are generally payable to age 65 or until the claimant reaches Social Security normal retirement age. In a recent ruling from a federal court in Montana, Sand-Smith v. Liberty Life […]
What is the difference between schizophrenia and a schizoaffective disorder in disability benefit cases?
That was the question posed in Duncan v. Metropolitan Life Ins. Co., 2016 WL 6651317 (D. Utah November 10, 2016), which held that MetLife’s interpretation of its mental impairment limitation as it applies to schizophrenia was inconsistent with the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).The case involved Michelle Duncan, who worked for U.S. […]