Residual/Partial vs. Total Disability

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A wake-up call to claimants on partial or residual disability

A recent appellate court ruling illustrated a serious problem that partially or residually disabled individuals face – what happens if their earnings temporarily exceed the maximum amount that may still be earned in order to be considered partially/residually disabled. In Safdi v. Covered Employer’s Long Term Disability Plan Under the Union Central Employee Security Benefit […]

Federal judge challenges ERISA litigation procedures

In Criss v. Union Security Ins.Co., 2014 WL 2707774, 2014 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 79300 (N.D.Ala. June 11, 2014), Judge William Acker, Jr. challenged the current methodology utilized by courts in adjudicating benefit disputes brought under ERISA.  The court based its premise on the universally recognized legal maxim, nemo judex in causa sua; i.e., “No man should be […]

DeBofsky Law Wins Disability Benefits for Law Firm Partner

In Fontaine v. Metropolitan Life Ins.Co., 2014 U.S.Dist.LEXIS 41253 (N.D.Ill. March 27, 2014), DeBofsky, Sherman & Casciari scored a major victory in securing an award of long-term disability insurance for a partner in a major law firm. The plaintiff, Mary Fontaine, enjoyed a successful career as a partner practicing in the field of structured finance for the law firm of Mayer Brown in Chicago where she worked for thirty years.

Disability Pension Blocked for Working Man

The phrase “total and permanent disability” can be subject to multiple meanings, as a recent ruling from the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals pointed out. In Tompkins v. Central Laborers’ Pension Fund, 2013 U.S.App.LEXIS 5161 (7th Cir. March 13, 2013), the appellate court determined that, even in the face of ambiguity, a pension plan administrator offered an interpretation of that phrase which was reasonable and within the scope of his/her discretionary authority when interpreting the plan.