Ask A Lawyer: Cystic Fibrosis

At Share Lawyers, we know that when your long-term disability insurance is denied, it can be an overwhelming and stressful experience. For those with Cystic Fibrosis, it may have been possible for you to work for quite some time, but as your disease progresses symptoms tend to worsen and you need the support of long-term disability benefits to help you take the time to focus on your health.

We have compiled a list of relevant questions with answers when it comes to disability insurance claims and Cystic Fibrosis that may help clarify some confusion for you.

I’ve had Cystic Fibrosis since I was a child, but now the condition is progressing with my symptoms getting worse and leaving me unable to work. How does a pre-existing medical problem like Cystic Fibrosis affect a long-term disability claim?

Generally, pre-existing medical problems only pose a problem if the disability arises a short time after coverage begins (usually one year on a group policy). In cases where a claim of total disability is made in the first year of coverage, the insurer may investigate to see if entitlement to benefits is excluded because of a pre-existing medical condition that came up just before coverage began (e.g. in the 90 days prior to the coverage beginning). The wording of the insurance policy is critical. Any policy should be carefully examined to determine specific provisions and how they may apply.

My Cystic Fibrosis has caused me to be underemployed or unemployed in the past, and now that I am unable to work after working full-time for a few years my finances are significantly limited. How much does it cost to hire a disability lawyer?

At Share Lawyers, all initial consultations with our lawyers are free. There are no fees until we settle your claim. We understand that our clients have suffered serious injuries or illnesses and are usually under great financial stress. For these reasons, we do not ask our clients to provide any financial contribution at the beginning of the case. We only get paid if we recover money for you. Our fees are calculated as a percentage of the total amounts recovered. The percentage that is applicable to each client's case is discussed fully before we start and is set out in writing in our retainer agreement, which includes an example of how the fee is calculated, so that there are no surprises when we conclude the case.

I used to be able to manage my symptoms of Cystic Fibrosis and be able to work, but now I am totally overwhelmed and unable to work at all and need long-term disability insurance since my situation has changed. How do insurance companies define "total disability"?

The general definition of total disability during the "own occupation period" is that you are unable to do the substantial duties of your own job because of illness or injury. When the definition of disability changes to “any occupation” the insurance company wants you to believe that it means if you are not able to do any job then you are eligible for benefits. We believe that the “any occupation” wording of most policies means that if you continue to be totally disabled and cannot do an equivalent job, at the equivalent level of experience and the equivalent pay scale, then you are eligible for continuing benefits into the future.

Has your long-term disability claim been denied? Contact Share Lawyers and put our experience to work for you. We offer free consultations and there are no fees unless we win your case. Find out if you have a disability case.

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Denied your long term disability claim?

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