In Los Angeles, Melinda Weatherford has decided that filing a lawsuit against Life Insurance Co. of North America is the best way to handle her current problem with the company’s attitude towards her disability. On July 5th, 2016, she went to the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California and filed the paperwork. In it, she states that she feels the insurance company violated the Employee Retirement Income Security Act.
In 2013, Weatherford was declared disabled and as such qualified for benefits, which she received from that time through April 9, 2015 at which point she was told she was no longer eligible and that her benefits were denied. A few months later, the benefits were reinstated, but that only lasted for a few months before Weatherford was once again denied by the Life Insurance Co. of North America company. According to the insurance company, Weatherford failed to provide sufficient evidence of her medical condition.
In her claim, Weatherford asked for all back benefits she’s been denied as well as future benefits.
The Employee Retirement Income Security Act was created in 1974. Amongst other things, the purpose of the act was to make sure employee benefits were protected. It’s a solid piece of legislation and it really has done a good job of protecting both the rights of pensioners and those who suffer from disability. That being said, the language can be confusing and insurance companies are brilliant at either finding loopholes they feel will prevent them from paying or they try to deny claims and revoke benefits with the hope that the individual in question will simply give up.
If you find yourself in a similar position, you need to remember that you do have legal options. Most have a free initial consultation service which provides them with an opportunity to explore the details of your case and advise you about your best course of legal options.
It’s important to remember that enlisting the service of a good personal injury attorney doesn’t necessarily mean you will be squaring off with the defendant in court. What it means is that you’re exploring your legal options. Although some personal injury cases do end up going to court, most are actually settled outside of the court room during the negotiation phase. In many instances, just learning that the plaintiff had the support of a good lawyer and that they had taken the steps to file a lawsuit was enough to convince the defendant to agree to reverse their initial decision about denying disability benefits. All the same, you and your lawyer will need to be prepared to argue the case before a judge and jury if a settlement can’t be agreed upon.
If you, like Ms. Weatherford, feel you’ve been unjustly denied your disability rights, it’s in your best interest to contact us today.