Have you struggled with trying to keep working despite suffering from a mental health issue or disability and not known what to do about it? Are you concerned about losing your job because your performance has been impacted by your condition?
Did you know that one in five people experience a mental health issue at some point every year? You are not alone. Seeking help is the first step to filing a disability claim for a mental health disability. While these claims are on the rise, this does not make it any easier to get your claim accepted.
With our vast experience in this area, our attorneys can help you with your depression and/or anxiety disability claim. Read on to find out how the Law Office of Justin Frankel can help fight for the disability benefits you need and deserve.
Depression, anxiety, and mental and nervous disorders make coping with everyday life a challenge. Mental health issues often make work difficult, if not impossible. At the Law Office of Justin Frankel, our New York disability insurance lawyers have a track record of working successfully with policyholders nationwide who are struggling to cope with depression, anxiety, and mental and nervous diagnoses.
Like other conditions not quantifiable by medical tests, such as fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome, a mental health claimant must pay particular attention to building a medical record that supports their claim. If a person has a sudden onset of mental disease, there may not be a medical record history. Someone who goes to see their primary care physician who prescribes an anti-depressant and adds a single note to a medical file will typically not be considered depressed by the disability insurance company.
If your claim for benefits has been denied or is being delayed, call our office at 888-583-4959 to learn how we can help.
Under the law, mental health issues satisfy the requirements of a disability if they disrupt your work performance and negatively influence your ability to undertake day-to-day activities. Disability insurance will also consider the degree and extent to which your function is impaired when determining your level of disability or if you have a disability at all. It is important to have an experienced disability attorney in your corner because these invisible injuries are often called into doubt by insurance companies looking to deny your claim.
Certain mental disorders may prevent you from working when serious enough. If that happens, you may qualify for disability benefits through your insurance.
Anxiety disorder can present as difficulty breathing and concentrating, heart palpitations, and panic attacks that can make it impossible to focus or perform. Anxiety disorders include obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, and phobias. Often, this impacts one’s ability to perform their work.
Depression goes far beyond simple feelings of sadness. Depression is marked by a complete lack of interest or ability to take pleasure in any activities. Those with depression may experience low energy, trouble sleeping, concentration issues, feelings of inadequacy, and may even harbor suicidal ideations. Types of depression include major depressive disorder or clinical depression, persistent depressive disorder or dysthymia, or bipolar disorder-related depression.
Other mental health disorders include post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), neurocognitive disorders, personality disorders, learning disabilities, schizophrenia, and somatic symptom disorders. Each condition must meet specific requirements to establish it as a true disability. Often these conditions impact one’s ability to perform their job or to work at all.
Anyone making a mental health claim on a disability policy must begin treatment with a qualified psychiatrist or psychologist to receive treatment, demonstrate that this is a serious condition, and begin to document how the condition affects the ability to work.
Often, there is a specific clause in a disability policy that addresses mental and nervous claims to limit benefits. Insurance companies wrote these policies specifically to contain costs, and the rules are strict. There are severe limitations to mental and nervous claims, which are usually paid out only for a maximum of 12 or 24 months. Your payments will stop at the end of that time unless you can prove that you have another disability, even if your mental health condition continues.
Many disability insurance companies try to push claimants into the mental and nervous category to limit and restrict payments. You and your doctor must clearly distinguish between physical and mental conditions. For example, suppose you are depressed because of the limitations of a chronic disease. In that case, the disability insurance company might attempt to change your diagnosis from chronic pain or illness to depression to limit your benefits.
If your depression, anxiety, or nervous condition is severe and you cannot perform your job tasks, you should speak with a disability insurance policy lawyer who has successfully represented claimants in depression, anxiety, and mental and nervous disorders disability claims. If you have questions, call our experienced team directly at 888-583-4959 or send us an email.
Sometimes, mental health disabilities arise from physical injuries like brain injuries. Many mental illnesses can be treated with medication and therapy. In many cases, mental illness symptoms may be controlled but cannot be cured. Having a mental health condition can be a lifetime struggle requiring regular therapy. Even if your mental illness improves after a year, you may still be eligible for disability benefits.
There are, however, very specific and sometimes complex rules that the disability insurance company can use to deny your claim. Most often, they will challenge the severity of the condition. This is why addressing your medical issues in detail is vital when you file your disability claim. A knowledgeable New York disability lawyer can help you with this.
Claim denials for disability benefits are surprisingly common. The good news is that just because your claim was denied, it is not the end of the road, and you may still have options depending on your situation.
You can appeal the denial, though the process is complex, and you will need to provide extensive medical evidence that your disability is real and that you need benefits.
You may need records or testimony from a healthcare professional. For this, it can be beneficial to have an experienced New York disability law firm in your corner.
Most long-term disability insurance policies pay benefits for a limited period of time for qualifying mental health claims, so protecting the claim is especially important for the financial well-being of the claimant and their dependents. Unlike physical disabilities, injuries, or illnesses, mental health disabilities do not appear in X-rays, diagnostic images, or blood tests and do not always show physical impairments.
Because of this, support for such a claim has to be found through other sources. Medical records from a treating psychiatrist (including pharmaceutical medications), a pharmacologist, or other specialists must be extremely robust and provide great detail about a person’s disability, treatment, and why they can’t perform the tasks and duties of their profession. We develop forms to identify specific functional deficits to support the claim.
Fighting an enormous company with unlimited resources, uncaring claims adjusters, and layers of bureaucracy is aggravating for a healthy person. For a person suffering from anxiety, depression, or other mental health conditions, it can be overwhelming.
Handing the entire matter to an experienced New York disability attorney provides tremendous relief to our clients. Our knowledge of what is required to navigate these special claims helps our clients fight for these important benefits tied to their disability status.
We also check that claimants suffering from a mental or nervous disability are under the regular care of an appropriate specialist. Having a general practitioner prescribing anti-anxiety medication is likely to draw the attention of a claims manager. A disability insurance attorney will help the claimant find the right doctor for treatment so their claim will be supported properly.
Finally, many medications used to treat mental health issues have side effects that can make claimants feel drowsy or sleepy, or have trouble focusing enough to perform complex tasks, including applying for disability benefits, fighting an appeal, or dealing with requests for additional information. Having an advocate to help educate the insurer about the functional issues and deficits of a claimant is often critical.
Mental health issues are real and can be disabling to those suffering from the disorder, along with their family members and loved ones. If you have suffered a lifelong mental health disability and the insurance provider denies your claim, you do not have to fight alone. At the Law Office of Justin Frankel, we have represented many people like you over the years. Our office is located in Long Island, New York, and we have built a reputation of diligently serving claimants nationwide. Call us toll-free at 888-583-4959 or use our online contact form to schedule your free consultation today.