18 Aug, 2020
Four Insurance Claim Mistakes To Avoid
Public safety officers need to be cautious about every step they take — even when they are out-of-uniform. If an injury prevents you from working, you can better ensure your disability claim is accepted by avoiding common mistakes that lead to denials.
Police officers, firefighters, and emergency medical service personnel are the most common examples of public safety officers. Others include emergency preparedness managers, wildlife marshalls and chaplains, correctional facilities guards, parole officers and more. Some of these hard-working men and women have made mistakes during pending insurance claims that kept them from receiving disability funds.
Below are some common missteps to avoid after you have submitted your disability insurance claim.
- Ignoring insurance deadlines. Do not expect anyone on the agency’s side to do more than the bare minimum to contact you. When you get the notice in the mail with details about claims and deadlines, act immediately. You can file for an extension if you are having difficulty meeting the deadlines. But do not count on anyone to go out of their way to contact or remind you to do so.
- Lacking proper documentation. Further to the misstep above, be sure to provide all requested documentation. This includes doctor’s notes, incident reports, employment history, a copy of your employer’s benefits services and medical receipts. Failing to send the proper paperwork could delay or disqualify your claim.
- Downplaying your injury. Property insurers send investigators to houses after a hurricane, and you can expect your insurer will send investigators to check on you while your claim is pending. If you are seen engaging in activities that may disprove your claim, the investigator will report it to the company and you may be rejected. This includes extraneous physical activity, group sports or even driving. Ultimately, if you are too injured to work, you are also too injured to play. That leads us to the next common misstep…
- Broadcasting your adventures. A few clicks online can provide ample evidence to reject a claim. Some public safety officers have suffered consequences for posting pictures or photos of themselves engaging in activities that a disabled or injured person should not take part in. For example, pictures have surfaced on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram of officers who claimed disability benefits but had no difficulty playing extreme sports and driving vehicles in the mountains.
This has led to renewed interest in disability fraud, which erodes public trust. Show some restraint and avoid the urge to tell the world about your injury and never publicly comment on your claim. You might even remove your social media profiles or make them inactive and hidden, to eliminate the ability to share. If these photos or videos surface, expect insurers to use it as evidence to reject your claim. It will also cause major hurdles when you return to work.
It is best to hire a law firm that specializes or focuses on representing public safety officers when preparing to file a claim. The steps involved to resolve these claims on your own can be a lengthy and sometimes costly process.
That is why PeacockLaw, a.p.c. typically files these injury claims within 48 hours of accepting each case. We exclusively represent public safety officers and are well-versed in your claims process. We lead the discussion and the negotiations, which leads to faster and larger insurance coverage payouts.
FOUR INSURANCE CLAIMS MISTAKES TO AVOID
No matter how badly you are injured, submitting a disability claim does not instantly lead to disability insurance payments. The claims process is lengthy and intricate for public safety officers and it is easy to make mistakes after your claim is submitted. In this article, PeacockLaw, a.p.c. discusses four common mistakes that must be avoided in order to have a disability claim accepted.
Failing to reply by deadline, sending incomplete paperwork, and acting in the opposite way an injured person would are costly mistakes that have led to claim denials and thorough investigations. It can also make returning to work much more difficult. We explain how public safety officers can spot and avoid these traps while their claim is pending.