Disability Benefits

News & Analysis as of

Language barriers may increase approval for SSD benefits

Limited English use can severely limit job opportunities, especially for people who suffer from debilitating conditions. Fortunately, as any Oak Lawn disability lawyer could attest, English use is weighed during Social...more

ERISA Participant’s Supplemental Submission Doesn’t Restart Exhaustion Clock

A federal district court in New Jersey held that supplemental documentation submitted by a participant in connection with the claims review process did not restart the clock for a claims administrator to decide the...more

Should I Attend a PPD When I Need More Treatment?

I will be posting one of my readers’ questions regarding permanent partial disability awards each month for all my readers with my response. Here’s this month’s question: Q: I think I need more treatment, but the...more

Employment Law Letter - Spring 2015

In this Issue: - Is a Volunteer an Employee For Discrimination Law Purposes? - Don’t Use “Just Cause” Except In Union Contracts - Are Courts Getting Tough On Disability Claims? - Legal Briefs and...more

RMF Litigators Obtain Reversal Of Denial Of Long-Term Disability Benefits

When a private insurance company denies a claim for long-term disability benefits, one appeals that decision through that same insurance company’s appeal process. This does not bode particularly well for the appealing...more

Illinois workers’ compensation reforms lead to lower medical payouts

More than 155,600 Illinois residents were injured on the job during 2013, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Many of these people required significant medical care during the weeks and months following the...more

When does Social Security determine a condition to be disabling?

Social Security Disability benefits provide support to people who cannot work because they suffer from disabling conditions. However, as Berwyn Social Security lawyers know, qualifying for benefits can be challenging even for...more

How to get SSD for early onset Alzheimer’s

Alzheimer’s is classified as early onset when it develops before the age of 65. This neurological condition can have various detrimental effects on short-term memory, communication skills, reasoning and behavior....more

Getting SSD benefits for asbestos exposure

Asbestos is a set of minerals that occur naturally in the form of fiber bundles. Today, asbestos is recognized as a health hazard and closely regulated. However, asbestos has been used in various products, and as Social...more

3 real world examples of pregnancy challenges in the workplace

Question 1: After recovery from child birth, if an employer provides an additional four weeks of leave time (paid or unpaid) for a female employee for parenting or bonding time with the child, must the employer treat...more

What are the 5 mental effects of Parkinson’s?

Parkinson’s disease is a progressive nervous system disorder that affects movement. This disorder occurs due to the loss of nerve cells and the neurotransmitter dopamine. The physical symptoms of Parkinson’s, which include...more

SSD provides assistance to stroke victims

A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is disrupted or when blood vessels hemorrhage, causing brain cell damage. About 795,000 people suffer a stroke each year in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control...more

Can a Person Who Receives Disability Benefits Own a Car?

The short answer is yes. Although many disability benefit programs like Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Medicaid impose resource limits on beneficiaries, a beneficiary's household is allowed to own one vehicle of any...more

Injured Workers’ Opinions Needed NOW!!

As you know, I have been working with a group of dedicated workers’ comp attorneys to try to defeat some nasty bills that would significantly cut your benefits. Specifically, Assembly Bill 229 would require that rating...more

Is fibromyalgia eligible for SSD benefits?

Fibromyalgia is a disorder that causes various debilitating symptoms, including muscle pain, joint aches and fatigue. Fibromyalgia has no known cure and can be highly disabling, as any disability lawyer in Chicago...more

How does Social Security assess your physical residual functional capacity?

Physical residual functional capacity is a measure of a person’s functional abilities. The Social Security Administration considers RFC when evaluating claims involving medical conditions that are not automatically recognized...more

Rising numbers of disability recipients linked to female workers and baby boomers

The number of Social Security Disability benefit recipients has increased dramatically in recent decades, as many Chicago residents know. According to The Washington Post, from 1980 to 2010, the number of beneficiaries rose...more

Disgorgement of Profits Not Available for Arbitrary and Capricious Benefits Denial – This Time

Wrongful denial of employee benefits will not expose plan fiduciaries to equitable remedies – such as disgorgement of profits – where restoration of benefits is adequate to make the claimant whole, says the Sixth Circuit in...more

Ninth Circuit Rules That Harmless Procedural Violation Does Not Alter Standard of Review

The Ninth Circuit held that a plan administrator’s failure to render a decision on a long-term disability benefits claim within the period mandated by the plan and ERISA did not alter the standard of review that the court...more

Claiming SSD benefits for non-mosaic Down syndrome

Down syndrome is a genetic disorder that affects mental, muscular and skeletal development. A small number of Down syndrome cases are mosaic, with the genetic abnormality only apparent in some cells....more

Sixth Circuit Rejects Claim that Disgorgement of Profits Is Appropriate Remedy in ERISA Benefit Denial Action

On March 5, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, sitting en banc in the matter of Rochow v. Life Insurance Company of North America, 2015 WL 925794 (6th Cir. Mar. 5, 2015), reversed the finding of a prior...more

ERISA: 6th Circuit — Plop Plop, Fizz Fizz: Oh What A RELIEF It Is: No Disgorgement For Arbitrary Denial Of Benefits

Does an arbitrary and capricious denial of ERISA governed disability benefits create a right to disgorgement of profits? NO....more

Sixth Circuit Overturns the Lower Court’s Award of $3.8 Million in Alleged Profits Arising From a Denial of Benefits

The U. S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, sitting en banc, has overturned the decision of a divided three-judge Sixth Circuit panel which had affirmed the district court’s award of $3.8 million of “disgorged” profits,...more

Breaching Fiduciary Cannot Seek Equitable Indemnity from Another Fiduciary

A California federal district court dismissed a plan fiduciary’s equitable indemnity claim because such claims are not available to a breaching fiduciary under ERISA. Plaintiff William Brown commenced a putative class action...more

Illinois worker still eligible for workers’ compensation after fired for theft

Disabling accidents are tragically common among warehouse workers in Illinois. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 5 percent of full-time warehouse employees suffer a serious workplace injury every year....more

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