Information recently received by attorneys indicates Unum is not overturning denials on appeal. Despite the fact that Unum seems to be “patient and understanding” during the COVID-19 lockdown, the company is still not overturning unfair denials. As a Consultant, I noticed this trend several years ago, but apparently Unum’s refusal to pay claims denied unfairly is gaining in momentum.
This tendency is consistent with Unum’s overall claims management strategies during the last five years. Persistent allegations of SSDI money owed, hiring Lucens to chase down SSDI paperwork, outsourcing most internal review functions and departments, and denials or suspensions of claims for out of contract reasons, all signal a company with potential cash flow and profitability growth problems. In my opinion, Unum’s claims management processes are more likened to out of control chaos leaving insureds bewildered and in the cold financially most of the time.
Some time ago, one of Unum’s terminated employees informed me that management fell on its sword during a company wide computer presentation admitting operations within the company were pretty bad and a quick fix was on the way. As a Consultant who deals with Unum a great deal, I’ve NOT noticed any positive changes diverting from the usual sloppy, rude, and contentious parade from which management seems to be running the show.
In my opinion, Unum Group, and its forerunners UnumProvident and Unum Life Insurance have been utilizing unfair claims practices since its demutualization in the late 1980s. I’ve written many historical articles on Unum’s bungling and deliberate unfair claims practices since that time.
Although it was hoped Unum would have changed its egregious nature in 2008 when the company finally completed the Multi-State Settlement reassessment process and re-branded itself as “Unum Group”, unfortunately that has not happened. Notably, the company went forward worse than it has ever been and many of Unum’s actions within the last several years have not been a big surprise to those of us who are still in the know.
In my opinion, Unum is a bad company and probably always will be! In fact, many hoped UnumProvident would suffer the same fate as Enron after the poor leadership of the Chandler dynasty, but of course, that didn’t happen. This is indeed unfortunate since Unum is the largest Group insurer in the country, and receives well over 500,000 new claims each year from those who are financially dependent on receiving future benefits.
U.S. claimants still depend on Group STD/LTD benefits despite overwhelming information that the company is unfair and continues to “cook the record” in order to deny payable claims for profit. If the company walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, its still a duck, regardless of how many ponds it swims in.
Former California Insurance Commissioner, John Garamendi, called Unum “a criminal organization”, and indeed the company continues to live up to that reputation. Therefore, while Unum’s persona appears to be “cooperative” during the national pandemic, you can be sure the “targeting” and review processes used to deny claims is still in effect.
Let’s not give Unum credit for more “niceness and cordiality” than it deserves.