How Does “Any Occupation” Disability Insurance Work?

Fri Nov 16th, 2018 on     Disability Insurance,    

Miami Disability Insurance Lawyers

If you’ve had your disability insurance claim wrongfully denied, undervalued, delayed, or otherwise mishandled by your insurer, then you may be feeling overwhelmed, and for good reason.  Though your priority should be managing your health in the wake of a disability, it’s critical that you secure benefits that will serve as “income replacement” if you cannot return to work.

Insurers are frequently aggressive about denying claims, and in fact, they often wrongfully deny disability benefits claims that are legitimate.  Insurance companies may feel justified in making denial decisions due to the insurance policy including a strict “any occupation” definition of disability.  It’s important that you understand what “any occupation” disability insurance is and what circumstances may allow you to secure benefits.

What is “Any Occupation” Disability Insurance?

Private disability insurance plans generally feature one of two different definitions of a disabling condition: any occupation and own occupation.

Own occupation allows for the receipt of benefits in the event that the policyholder is incapable of performing the material duties of their existing occupation.  By contrast, any occupation only allows for the receipt of benefits in the event that the policyholder is rendered incapable of performing the material duties of any occupation for which he or she may reasonably become qualified.

Any occupation disability insurance therefore requires that the policyholder establish that they are impaired to the degree that they cannot secure an alternative job for which they are or can become reasonably qualified.

Reasonably Qualified to Perform Material Duties

Fortunately, there are a number of ways in which you can prove that you are not sufficiently capable of taking on an alternative occupation (that would prevent you from receiving disability benefits).

Any occupation disability insurance policies generally require that the alternative occupation provide the policyholder with substantially the same earning capacity as their former position.  For example, if the market average salary for the alternative occupation is 50 percent of your former salary, then it is not a “reasonable” alternative.

Further, you must be able to perform the material duties of the alternative occupation.  If you can only perform “some” of the material duties, but not all, then it is not a reasonable alternative.  The insurer may also not require you to go back to school or obtain specialized training to become qualified for the alternative occupation — the only options are those that the policyholder could reasonably become qualified for given their existing education, training, and experience.

Contact Our Team of Experienced Miami Disability Insurance Lawyers for Assistance

Ver Ploeg & Marino, P.A. is a Florida-based insurance litigation firm with an extensive history handling insurance disputes on behalf of those who are suffering from a disability that renders them incapable of working.

We are compassionate advocates who understand the unique pressures faced by disabled persons in the insurance context, and who are willing to go above-and-beyond to resolve the dispute in a favorable manner.  Our client-centered approach has served us well — we have obtained numerous and significant results for our clients, helping them secure the benefits they need to move forward with their lives.

Call (305) 577-3996 or send us a message online to speak to one of our experienced Miami disability insurance lawyers.  Consultation is free and confidential.

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