What is ERISA ?
ERISA is a law that strips all policyholders (who purchase their insurance from their employer) of the rights and the leverage they need to get their insurers to pay legitimate claims.
Where ERISA preempts the state’s insurance law, it is imperative you seek knowledgeable assistance from insurance policy experts who are experienced in weaving through the employer-based policy maze.
Ray Bourhis Associates Long Term Disability Insurance law firm has the experience, the track record, and the respect of the insurance companies to ensure benefits owed are paid promptly and completely.
Typically with ERISA-preempted disability or medical policies:
- The claimant cannot work and has no money coming in.
- The claim has been denied for bogus reasons, and the claimant is losing his/her life savings and home and may be suffering additional mental distress as a result.
- The case must be approached in a different manner than privately-held insurance policies. WITH ERISA preemption, most state insurance regulations are preempted, and there are no Federal protections or regulations. There are NO federal protections or regulations because the federal government is barred from regulating insurance by the McCarran Ferguson Act.
If your insurance policy is ERISA pre-empted, Ray Bourhis Associates is ready to assist you in negotiating your claim and ensuring you receive the maximum benefits you are owed.
Purchasing your Insurance Policy Privately Is In Your Best Interest
If you are in the process of purchasing insurance, or have been given the choice between an employer’s policy (ERISA preempted) whether or not you pay the insurer directly), or purchasing your own policies; here is some advice that will help you to make the decision. The 2 biggest problems that must be solved to reduce fraudulent and bad faith conduct by insurance companies are:
- The fact that individuals purchasing insurance at their workplace have no recourse if they are cheated by their insurance companies. This is so, even if they are bankrupted and their lives are destroyed.
- When a policyholder’s rights are not preempted by ERISA that means the insured receives the protections and remedies provided by his state’s insurance laws.
- Specifically, insureds illegally deprived of policy benefits should be entitled to obtain compensation for all resulting damage including:
a. of all the past and future benefits owed,
b. consequential damages if they have lost savings, homes and other assets.
In addition, as in California, insurance companies should be deterred from profitable misconduct by providing judges and juries with the authority to award punitive damages in cases involving clear and convincing evidence of malice, fraud or oppression.
Contact us if your disability insurance benefits have been denied for any reason!
Related blog post: Does ERISA help you or hurt you?