The Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA laws) is a complex set of rules and regulations designed to protect you and your families' interests regarding matters of long-term disability and employer-provided life insurance coverage.
If you recently lost a loved one covered by a life insurance policy governed by ERISA, it's important to speak with a knowledgeable attorney about your situation. This is especially important if you have already received a claim denial for death benefits, as there are specific criteria to meet to successfully file an appeal. If you need an ERISA lawyer, we can help.
When a private-sector employer purchases group life insurance for its employees or has it provided to them through an insurer, it is likely covered by ERISA. There are two situations where this may not be the case that you should be aware of, though:
Church-sponsored or related entity plans are not covered under ERISA unless elected to be so
Policies provided and/or managed by government agencies for their staff, including those to meet compliance standards for programs like workers' compensation, disability regulations, or unemployment requirements that ERISA doesn't cover.
While a simple phone call to an employer or insurer can answer this question, you can also determine if ERISA controls your life insurance policy if the employer providing coverage does any of the following:
Pay all or part of required premiums
Encourages its employees to sign up for the coverage
Retains a portion of premium proceeds to administer your plan
Tracks who is participating in the plan
Provides answers to plan members' coverage questions
Before filing an ERISA claim, be sure to speak with a qualified life insurance attorney about your policy first. Often, there are very specific requirements you must meet to be eligible for benefits and filing deadlines you may not be aware of your coverage provisions. Avoiding simple mistakes is crucial in preventing unnecessary delays and frustrating claim denials.
Should you have already filed and had your request denied, you should receive a written letter explaining why this has happened, as well as procedures to file an ERISA appeal. If you are in this situation, it's in your best interest to schedule a free consultation with us right away.
Our highly qualified and experienced life insurance attorneys have gone head to head with insurers to overturn ERISA denials our clients have received. If you feel you were unfairly denied death benefits, trust our successful case record and dedication to help, you successfully appeal. Our approach includes filing a 200-page brief on your behalf and bypassing troublesome claims adjusters. Schedule a free consultation day or night by contacting us online.