Entries by J.J. Conway

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Making the Most of Your Free Law Firm Consultation

Nearly all law firms offer a “free consultation.” An initial consultation without cost is like a free estimate to fix a household problem. While legal issues are considerably more complex than common household fixes, treating a “free consultation” like a “free estimate” may be useful. Just as with a common household problem, when it comes […]

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“WFH,” Long Term Disability Claims, and the Implications of the Covid-19 Pandemic

With such intense focus on a single communicable illness, it is easy to forget that we, as human beings, suffer from other illnesses.  Some medical journals are concerned that rates of serious medical conditions may rise as many would-be patients did not seek preventative care during much of 2020. And the trend continues.(https://healthcostinstitute.org/hcci-research/the-impact-of-covid-19-on-the-use-of-preventive-health-care.) “Work from […]

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Keeping Your LTD Claim Approved During Covid-19

The year 2020 will be remembered as a time when working from home became the norm for many in the United States. Some employers have notified the workforce they will not return to their offices until the summer of 2021.  Well, unsurprisingly, disability claims examiners are working from home, too. Many long-term disability claimants may […]

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New Supreme Court Members Have New Take on ERISA

In Thole v. U.S. Bank N.A., No. 17-1712, 2020 U.S. LEXIS 3030 (June 1, 2020), the U.S. Supreme Court ruled, 5-4, that defined pension plan participants lacked constitutional standing to sue over a $750 million loss to their plan because they had not yet missed a benefit payment. Justice Kavanaugh, writing for the majority, brought […]

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The Supreme Court Says, “Actual Knowledge” Means “Actual Knowledge” in Calculating ERISA’s Breach of Fiduciary Duty Statute of Limitations

On February 26, 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its unanimous decision in Intel Corporation Investment Policy Committee v. Sulyma, Case No. 18-1116. https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/19pdf/18-1116_h3cj.pdf.  The decision resolves a split in the Circuits concerning the appropriate date by which to measure the shortened statute of limitations for breach of fiduciary duty claims.  The triggering event for the […]

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One Long Term Disability Claim; Two Different Views. What is a Claimant to do?

Most are familiar with the famous sketch of the simultaneous-silhouette of the older and younger woman appearing within the same image. Both women can be seen within the same drawing. Depending on the viewer’s perspective, the image appears to be of one of two different people.  While viewing the image, the mind can move back […]

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ERISA LONG-TERM DISABILITY BASICS: THE CONTINUING PROOF OF LOSS

For those who have successfully fought to have a disability claim approved, they want it to stay that way. When the letter arrives from an insurance company seeking an update in status, most claimants begin to worry – and rightly so. As the Western District of Michigan federal court wisely observed fifteen years ago: The […]

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ERISA Long-Term Disability Basics: The Role of the Treating Physician

“My doctor will support me.” This is one of the most common expressions heard from clients dealing with an ERISA long-term disability insurance claim. Disability claimants know, perhaps without formal recognition, that their disability insurance claim requires a solid evidentiary foundation. Most claimants realize they carry the burden to prove their claim and recognize that […]

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Finally, Some Clarification Regarding What Is Meant By “Clarifying a Right to Future ERISA Benefits”

It is one of the most commonly asked questions by disability claimants who have successfully battled their disability insurance companies to overturn a denied or terminated disability claim. They have won, but there is one lingering question: Can my insurance company cut me off again? Technically, the answer is “yes.” Most disability law practitioners have […]