How Much Are My Long-Term Disability Benefits? ERISA Sarasota Long Term Disability Attorney

“Financial pre-planning does not end when you buy your Long Term Disability Policy,” says ERISA disability attorney Nancy Cavey. There are two considerations in determining how great your long-term disability benefits will be if you become disabled. Normally, your insurance policy provides that you’ll be paid a percentage of your salary if you become disabled.

There are two important considerations that will determine the amount of your long-term disability benefits. The first is whether or not your long-term disability benefits are taxable. This was discussed in a recent posting.

The second consideration is whether or not your long term disability policy has an offset provision that will reduce your benefits. What’s an offset? Some policies will provide that if you receive Social Security disability benefits (including dependent benefits for your children), workers compensation benefits, retirement disability benefits, or even a distribution from your 401(k), your long-term disability benefits will be reduced by the receipt of those benefits.

You will often find a minimum mandatory payment provision in your policy. What is that? This allows a long-term disability carrier to reduce your gross long-term disability benefits by “off settable” benefits.  This offset may be so great that you receive very little long-term disability benefits. This offset can also be greater than the gross amount of your long-term disability benefits. If that happens, many policies say that they’ll pay you a minimum amount of benefits. Perhaps as little as $100.

Do you know whether your long-term disability policy allows your gross disability benefit to be reduced?  Do you know if there is a minimum mandatory payment? You should find these things out now and not before you become disabled.

Many long-term disability policy holders are surprised to learn that their benefits can be reduced. Here’s another surprise!

After the long-term disability insurance company produces the gross amount of your benefits to practically nothing, they will then deny your client. Why? Long-term disability insurance carriers know that if there are little or no benefits left after offsets, it will be difficult for you to find an experienced and skilled long-term disability Attorney to fight for you and secure the benefits you are entitled.

Don’t let the long-term disability insurance company rob you of your peace of mind! Get a copy of your policy and read it. If you see offsets and minimum mandatory payments, your long-term disability policy may, in fact, be worthless in your time of need.

If you have any questions regarding your long-term disability policy, please contact experienced long-term disability/ERISA Tampa Bay attorney, Nancy Cavey.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at 727.894.3188 or contact us online by clicking here.

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Are Long-Term Disability Benefits taxable? | Bradenton Long Term Disability ERISA Lawyer

Are Long-Term Disability Benefits taxable?

It depends! If you’ve paid for your long-term disability policy with pretax dollars, your long-term disability benefits will be subject to taxation. Most people have long-term disability insurance coverage as part of a benefit package offered by their employer. Even if you pay part of the long-term disability insurance premium and your employer pays the rest, your long-term disability benefits will be taxable.

If you paid for your long-term disability benefits with after-tax dollars, your long-term disability benefits will not be subject to taxation.

Do you know if your long-term disability benefits are taxable? You should find out so that you have adequate long-term disability coverage. You don’t want to find out that you didn’t purchase the correct amount of long-term disability coverage after you become disabled.

If you have questions about the taxability of your long-term disability benefits, please contact Tampa Bay disability Attorney Nancy Cavey. Nancy has written the free must read book on Long Term Disability/ERISA  policies and the disability claims process.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at 727.894.3188 or contact us online by clicking here.

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Disability Insurance Policy Basics and Your Disability Policy | Brandon Long Term Disability Attorney

If you are sick or injured and unable to work, you and your family are probably experiencing financial problems. Disability Income Insurance can replace, in part, a paycheck, so it is important to understand the disability  benefits you purchased. I would suggest that you get a copy of my book ““Robbed of Your Peace of Mind? Important Information on Long Term Disability Insurance Policies, the Claims Procedures and How to Win Your Long Term Disability Benefits” to learn about your disability policy.

Disability policies have common provisions. Plans have a specific period of time you have to be disabled before the disability benefit kicks in and you start receiving payments. There is also a maximum time limit you get paid before benefits stop. Think of it as a starting and ending point for your disability/ERISA benefits

Disability benefits plans generally only cover 2/3 of your gross income. However, there are offsets that can reduce your disability check by the receipt of Social Security, Workers’ Compensation benefit and 401K benefits. You could end up with a minimum payment of $100.00 after all reduction and deductions are made.

There are two types of disability insurance. Short term disability is just that- payment for a short period which can last six weeks to twenty-six weeks. Long term disability plans can last 2 years, 5 years, 10 years, and even in certain cases, can last you until you are 65.

Short-term disability usually can only be purchased on a group basis through your employer. Short-term disability benefits can start immediately after an injury or illnesses. Policies will typically pay after one or two weeks or being off of work.

Long term disability plans are more complicated than short-term disability plans. The waiting period for benefits can be one to six months or more, with an average waiting period of 90 days. Long-term disability plans have all sorts of limitations which I discuss in my book Robbed of Your Peace of Mind? Important Information on Long Term Disability Insurance Policies, the Claims Procedures and How to Win Your Long Term Disability Benefits”.  One of the most important is an “own occupation” policy. This “own occupation” policy says that if you cannot work in the job you were trained for (by schooling or experience) you are considered disabled and eligible to receive benefits. There are many other types of disability policies with different definitions of disability. Do you know what your policy says?

Do not let an disability insurance policy intimidate or confuse you. If you have any questions regarding short or long term disability policies contact experienced St. Petersburg Long Term Disability/ERISA Attorney, Nancy Cavey. Regardless of where you live, she can help!

If you have any questions, please give us a call at 727.894.3188 or contact us online by clicking here.

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UNUM’s 2008 Third Quarter Profits Come at UNUM LTD Policy Holder’s Expense | Spring Hill Long term Disability ERISA Lawyer

UNUM’s 2008 Third Quarter Profits are in! UNUM reported a “net income of $108.00 million in the third quarter of 2008 compared to a net income of $187.00  million in the third quarter of 2007”. Mr. Thomas R. Watjen, president and CEO, commented in an article that he was “pleased with our operating results and the quality of our balance sheet . . .”

Well, his pleasure at UNUM’s profits is coming at the expense of UNUM LTD Policy Holder’s peace of mind.    UNUM is robbing their long term disability policy holders by denying  valid long term disability claims and offering buyouts of 15% – 35%. UNUM’s profits are, in part, generated out of their long term disability claims handling process.

To learn more about how long term disability insurance companies write policies that rob long-term disability applicants of their peace of mind go to Cavey law.com where you can order Nancy Cavey’s book “Robbed of Your Peace of  Mind”.

In my next blog post, I’ll report on the verdict recently entered by a federal jury in Boston finding that UNUM committed fraud in some long term disability cases by requiring long-term disability applicants to apply for Social Security benefits even though UNUM knew their long-term disability claimants weren’t eligible for Social Security disability benefits.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at 727.894.3188 or contact us online by clicking here.

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UNUM found Guilty of Fraud by Federal Jury | New Port Richey Long Term Disability Attorney

UNUM, the nation’s largest disability insurance company, routinely requires long-term disability applicants to apply for Social Security disability benefits, regardless of whether the applicant is really entitled to Social Security benefits. Why did they do that? Because most long-term disability policies have a provision that allows them to reduce your long-term disability benefits, dollar for dollar, by the receipt of any Social Security disability benefits you might get. If you don’t apply, companies like UNUM take the position that you are getting Social Security benefits, and will reduce your long-term disability benefits.

UNUM processed “almost 4000 disability claims in 2007, and paid out more than 4 billion in benefits.”  Obviously, they want to do anything they can to reduce the payout.

Routinely requiring long-term disability applicants apply for Social Security benefits, even though the insurance company knows they are not eligible, waste valuable resources of the Social Security administration and has helped create a large backlog in the processing of valid Social Security disability claims.

A federal jury in Boston found that requiring “able-bodied people to apply it for Social Security could sometimes constitute fraud.” In an AARP bulletin by Mary Williams Walsh, it was noted that the lawsuit “was filed under a federal whistle blower statute that allows private citizens to sue on behalf of government programs if they believe they have evidence of fraud.” You can read Ms. Walsh’s article on UNUM found guilty of Social Security fraud.

UNUM, of course, plans to appeal! May be UNUM will get to experience, just like the UNUM policy holders who have their long-term disability claims wrongfully denied, how unfair the appeal process can be. I think the saying goes, ” What’s good for the goose, is good for the gander.”

If you have any questions about applying for Social Security disability benefits and the interaction with your long-term disability claim, contact Florida based long-term disability/ERISA lawyer, Nancy Cavey.

If you have any questions, please give us a call at 727.894.3188 or contact us online by clicking here.

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Conclusion – Preparing for Your Statement and Field Visit | Pasco County Long Term Disability Attorney

As you can see, there are least 22 mistakes that you can make if you don’t prepare for your statement or field visit properly. This is not a social visit and the long-term disability/ERISA carrier is not genuinely interested in you or your health. This is a set up–a trap and can be hard to fix after-the-fact.

Most long-term disability/ERISA applicants think they don’t need help in filling out forms or preparing for field visit by the long-term disability/ERISA adjuster or investigator. They think they can do it themselves –and, in fact, many times long-term disability/ERISA applicants really  “do it to themselves” in the naive belief that they don’t need assistance.

While I hope this series of articles on “Preparing for Your Statement and Field Visit” have been assistance to you; you should strongly consider seeking out advice from experienced long-term disability/ERISA lawyer to help you avoid the minefields that exists when the long-term disability/ERISA carrier wants you to fill out forms, take your statement, or have a field visit.

In the words of one of my children’s favorite TV characters, “Danger Will Robinson, Danger Will Robinson!”

My firm, Cavey and Barrett, can help you prepare for your statement and field visit. Contact us at caveylaw.com

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