FAQ – What Effect Does ERISA Have On My Claim? | Tampa Long Term Disability Attorney

ERISA is a federal statute. If you disability plan and policy is covered under ERISA, there are no state law claims.

Unfortunately, there is a game in federal courts called “What is the standard of review?”

The first question that the federal court assigned to your case will ask is not ” Is the disabled policy holder entitled to the disability benefits they paid for?”

No! The federal court asks whether or not they should wear blinders when they review your case. What do I mean?

I am sure that you are familiar with the burden of proof in a criminal matter. The state has to prove that the defendant is guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt. In civil litigation, the plaintiff has to prove their case by a preponderance of the evidence. One party has more evidence and is more persuasive than the other.

Unfortunately, preponderance of the evidence is not the standard for success in the federal court. The United States is divided into11 appellate districts and each district has their own standard of review. What a mess!

United States Supreme Court has recently heard a case called Glenn v. MetLife to try to decide whether or not there should be a uniform standard of review and, if so, what it should be. Depending on how the Court rules, this case could make it easier for you to win your case or easier for the disability insurance companies to legally deny your disability benefits.

ERISA law changes on a daily basis and you should have an attorney who is skilled in this area of law. Many lawyers just think ERISA case is just another contract dispute. Not so! We will see what the Supreme Court rules.

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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