A St Louis long term disability lawyer can help you to understand the way insurers view mental health issues and assist you in trying to be approved for long term benefits.
Your St Louis Long Term Disability Lawyer Will Explain the Difficulty of Securing Benefits for Mental Illness
Insurers often try to avoid approving claims for people who are suffering from mental illnesses. A person who has depression or bipolar disorder and is being treated by a psychiatrist or psychologist with the medical professional supporting the disability filing will generally have that claim denied. It is then that the claimant will have to file an appeal. Since these cases are complicated, it is imperative to have a St Louis long term disability lawyer preparing the application, appeal, and filing a lawsuit if necessary.
Understanding the Symptoms of Bipolar Disorder and Depression
Those who are feeling isolated, agitated, and sad on a persistent basis will likely be diagnosed as being clinically depressed. These feelings often interrupt a person’s ability to function on a daily basis. There could be physical side effects from depression such as inability to sleep, appetite fluctuations, and fatigue. Severe depression might lead to hallucinating, crying episodes, being delusional, and having suicidal impulses. It is not known what the cause of depression is, but stress, substance abuse, experiencing chronic pain, and family history are all considered as potential catalysts. A person who is suffering from bipolar disorder might also be referred to as manic depressive. This individual will alternate being depressed and manic. If the person is behaving in what is known as a “hypomanic” manner, he or she might show a significant amount of energy and get a great deal done. If this episode is severe, the person’s thoughts might race. They will be hyperactive, have trouble sleeping, behave impulsively, and be irritable. If the bipolar disorder is particularly acute, there could be psychosis. There can be a rapid back-and-forth between being manic and depressed. It can last from days to weeks to months. Those who have both simultaneously will be in a mixed state. To treat bipolar disorder, there might be medications prescribed such as mood-stabilizers and antidepressants. Counseling is also given.
Possible Limitations on Extended Coverage for Mental Conditions
Insurers try to limit the payments they must make for mental issues to a maximum of two years. The limitation might say something to the effect of: A disability that stems from injury or illness with a primary basis on symptoms that are self-reported by the claimant, and disabilities that are from mental illness or substance abuse will have a limit of 24 months to receive benefits. Symptoms that are self-reported are considered symptoms or effects of the illness that are told to the medical professional. These include fatigue and pain. They are not able to be verified by objective testing or clinical exams. It is important to remember that some policies will have an exemption from the two-year limitation for certain mental illnesses. Schizophrenia is one issue that is frequently not subject to the limitations. Others include dementia, organic brain disease, Alzheimer’s, and sometimes bipolar disorder. A policy that has exemptions from the limitation of two years might allow you to claim your long-term disability benefits for an indefinite period as long as you are still suffering from the disability. In general, the two-year limitation will apply to those suffering from depression.
The Importance of Documenting Your Claim
An important factor in your claim is to go to your treatment sessions with a psychiatrist or psychologist. This can be a great help to your St Louis long term disability lawyer winning your claim for long-term benefits for bipolar or depression. It is imperative that your insurance carrier requests and receives all medical information linked to your particular condition. This will include those from treating physicians, hospitals, and psychiatric treatment centers in which you have been treated. You must be proactive and not automatically think the carrier will request the information. Your insurer will probably contact the doctors who are treating you to get their opinions on your limitations. The paperwork that the insurer uses might not be completely thorough. It might be tilted to garner responses that place your claim in an unfavorable light. Make certain your vocational limitations are detailed in the record. Ask your doctor to focus on the following limitations you might have:
- Trying to avoid being late or excessively absent from work
- Maintaining focus on tasks during the workday
- Being able to understand, remember, and complete instructions both simple and complicated
- Giving appropriate response to critiques from superiors
- Engaging in appropriate interaction with colleagues and the public
Your doctor may fill out a Residual Functional Capacity form that your St Louis long term disability lawyer provides. A simple letter sent to the insurance company might also be sufficient. Your doctor should let the insurer know if you have been restricted from work as you are treated. It might be beneficial to provide third-party statements from people you worked with or supervisors. This can give observational assessments of what you were struggling with at work.
Contact an Experienced St Louis Long Term Disability Lawyer
If you have questions about a claim, call (314) 812-4885 to speak to St Louis long term disability lawyer David M. Hicks today.