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Information I found on the Internet”…..

OK. Here we go again. This week several insureds recited back information to me that they found researching the Internet and put it forth as the absolute truth. While I understand the need for people to use the Internet, I also do NOT understand why people believe everything they see or read as the absolute truth. Clearly, it isn’t.

I can tell you that 20 years ago I started writing columns on disability insurance “to correct” misinformation communicated by the Internet at the time. Although my blog probably represents the most accurate information available, today, when it comes to disability insurance, everyone has a sob story. Rarely, will you find successful stories involving disability decisions, although some people do email me about their good claim outcomes.

Insureds who are already fearful about losing their claims will remain fearful when they are exposed only to disability claim information provided by people who are also fearful. Negative claim informaton should NOT jump off of your computer screen into your claim file – it’s just not true.

Yes, disability insurers pay claims. If that were not true I wouldn’t be able to report a success rate of 98%! But “Yes”, although disability insurers do bad things to deny claims, they don’t do everything wrong. And “No”, not all claims are denied, although you may think so after reading the Internet.

Sometimes, family and friends actually get involved and start making recommendations when they have absolutely no idea about managing disability claims. Still, insureds, perhaps out of family loyalty will automatically accept illogical recommendations when given by family, close family and agents.

One of the most ridiculous “facts” people find on the Internet is the constant comment that SSDI is never approved first time around, and will always take 6-12 months to get approved. That is blatant misinformation for a lot of different reasons that would take me a long and boring while to write about.

Still, this is NOT true and I’ve heard people tell me this over and over again.

The Internet is NOT a reliable source of information for anything, particularly for disability claims and insurance. Please don’t enable yourself into becoming even more fearful than you already are by “betting your farm” on misinformation because you will lose it in the end.

Attorneys are often part of the problem, not the solution.

For the last several weeks I’ve been hearing the same old attorney swan songs, “Insurance companies will deny your claim anyway”,  “I don’t want to have anything to do with Unum”, “Comeback when your claim is denied, then I can help you”, “You might as well do it, they’ll deny your claim anyway”….and on and on.

Those people who run to attorneys thinking they will solve their claim problems may find instead…”don’t let the door hit you in the………”

Two decades ago, attorneys used to have a few cajones and actually advocated for claimants and insureds when it came to disability insurance. However, today claims management is NOT where the attorney’s money is and even when a few do-gooders accept claims for management, they don’t do a good job.

DCS, Inc. maintains a list of attorneys I’ve had experience with and know to be good ERISA and IDI attorneys. Attorneys do have a place in the process when claims are denied, and they should have proven successful outcomes with insurers. Anytime an attorney tells you to comply with something that is out of contract, or tells you to come back when the claim is denied, you should walk out the door.

Consultants, whether it’s me or someone else, will always want you to have paid claims not denied ones.