UnitedHealth Unlawfully Denied Mental Health Treatment, Judge Finds

One of the ways in which ERISA protects insureds is by imposing a fiduciary duty on certain decision makers, requiring that decisions about coverage and benefits be made in the best interests of the plan participants and not in the best interests of an insurer's profits.  A recent federal court ruling highlights the importance of …

Continue reading UnitedHealth Unlawfully Denied Mental Health Treatment, Judge Finds

Can the Insurance Company Retroactively Deny Your Claim On A New Basis After You File A Lawsuit?

Let's say you make an insurance claim, and the insurance company denies the claim for reason A.  You think they're wrong, so you take them to court and argue reason A is invalid and the company should have paid your claim.  In response, the insurance company admits reason A didn't apply but now argues your …

Continue reading Can the Insurance Company Retroactively Deny Your Claim On A New Basis After You File A Lawsuit?

Aetna Settles Wrongful Depression Treatment Denial Allegations

On February 15, 2019, Aetna Inc. announced a settlement of allegations Aetna wrongfully denied mental health treatment.  The plaintiff and a group of Aetna insureds had filed a class action lawsuit under ERISA alleging Aetna wrongfully denied health insurance for a specific treatment for major depression called Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation ("TMS"). The lawsuit alleges Aetna …

Continue reading Aetna Settles Wrongful Depression Treatment Denial Allegations

Court Hands Long-Term Disability Claimant A Win Based on Insurer’s Failure to Give Proper Notice of Claim Denial

ERISA's rules for making claims for benefits and for appealing benefit denials can prejudice claimants.  The rules are complicated, not obvious, and rarely fully disclosed.  And if you don't follow the rules, you can lose your right to file suit after a claim is denied. To protect claimants' rights during this process, the U.S. Department …

Continue reading Court Hands Long-Term Disability Claimant A Win Based on Insurer’s Failure to Give Proper Notice of Claim Denial

Four Common Disability Insurance Provisions and Why They Matter

As with most insurance cases, disputes over disability insurance coverage or benefits frequently turn on the specific insurance policy language at issue.  Insurance policy fine print can often be read in ways that are counterintuitive.  Below are four common policy provisions that are often key to the outcome of disability insurance disputes. 1.     The Definition …

Continue reading Four Common Disability Insurance Provisions and Why They Matter