If you are filing a claim or have been denied disability benefits, get Bartolic Law on your side. Our experienced Chicago long-term disability lawyers are highly knowledgeable in all aspects of disability insurance and can help you get the benefits to which you are entitled. Unfortunately, disability claims for congestive heart failure can prove challenging and are often denied. We have helped numerous clients get disability benefits paid due to congestive heart failure. We won a case on behalf of a client with congestive heart failure where the plan contended the client could perform sedentary work without demonstrating the client had vocational qualifications for any sedentary work. The judge agreed with us that the plan could not simply deny benefits by concluding one can perform sedentary work and granted judgment for our client.
Congestive heart failure and other heart diseases have also become increasingly common for individuals with HIV. As HIV-positive patients live longer, the treatment can place pressure on the heart, and some patients experience heart illnesses like congestive heart failure in their 50s and 60s. In fact, more HIV-positive individuals die of heart complications than from HIV itself. Insurers often try to label claims where an individual has both HIV and congestive heart failure as a disability due to HIV, and we must emphasize to the insurer that the HIV is not disabling, but the heart illness due to years of treatment for HIV.
According to statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), heart failure impacts about 6.2 million adults in the United States. It can be caused by a variety of conditions that weaken or damage the heart, including coronary artery disease, which is generally caused by a build-up of plaque in the arteries. Other risk factors include heart arrhythmias, heart valve problems and hypertension, otherwise known as high blood pressure. The symptoms and effects of these conditions can severely limit a person’s ability to work and increase the likelihood of heart attacks and strokes. As continuing to work can increase your risks, filing for long-term disability benefits is often the safest option. However, it is not uncommon for insurers to deny disability claims for cardiovascular conditions.
Ferrin v. Aetna Life Ins. Co., 336 F. Supp. 3d 910 (N.D. Ill. Sept. 28, 2018) (holding insurance policy’s grant of discretionary authority is void under Texas law due to certificate being issued after effective date of regulation, and policy renewing after effective date, and holding Plaintiff was disabled from Any Reasonable Occupation where treating doctors certify she can sit at the occasional level, and insurer’s consultants opine Plaintiff can sit frequently, as weighing all evidence together would make capacity likely at low end of frequent range at best).
Sadowski v. Tuckpointers Local 52 Health & Welfare Trust, 281 F. Supp. 3d 710 (N.D. Ill. Dec. 20, 2017) (holding plan was arbitrary and capricious in denying medical benefits for removal of spinal cord stimulator following a fall down the stairs and infection where plan argued the expenses were caused by the same injury as the car accident necessitating implantation of the stimulator years earlier)
Tassone v. United of Omaha Life Ins. Co., 264 F. Supp. 3d 867 (N.D. Ill. Aug. 30, 2017) (awarding client long term disability benefits denied by United of Omaha despite insurer’s doctor opining there was no objective evidence of functional impairment)
Suson v. PNC Fin. Servs. Grp., Inc., No. 15-CV-10817, 2017 WL 3234809 (N.D. Ill. July 31, 2017) (holding Liberty Mutual’s denial of client’s long term disability benefits was arbitrary and capricious where Liberty Mutual disregarded client’s carpal tunnel syndrome and relied on a vocational opinion to which client never had an opportunity to address before litigation)
While it can be difficult to obtain long-term disability benefits for congestive heart failure, people experiencing this condition should not be discouraged from applying for the benefits they’ve earned. For assistance filing or appealing a claim for long-term disability insurance in Chicago, contact Bartolic Law today. To get your case evaluated by a Chicago long-term disability lawyer, complete this questionnaire, and one of our representatives will contact you, or simply Book Online.