Airplane Pilot Loses License Because of Restrictions and is Still Denied Long Term Disability
Long term disability policies are supposed to replace your income if you are unable to work. Many of these long term disability policies have a clause that says that the loss of license doesn’t mean that you are entitled to benefits. But what about the case of a pilot? If you lose your license because of medication side effects then the loss of your license is irrelevant. Airline pilot long term disability claim denied attorney Nancy Cavey argues that the loss of a license is a consequence of your illness and is further proof that you can’t work. Some long term disability companies like Hartford, appear to have a pattern and practice of denying these type of claims.
One recent example is the case of Hannigan vs. Piedmont Airlines (201 US District Lexis 31472 (N.D.N.Y. March 31st, 2010)). Pilot Hannigan suffered from obsessive-compulsive disorder and severe allergies that required treatment by medication that the FFA disallowed. As a result, his license was suspended and Hartford denied his claim, maintaining that it wasn’t the symptoms of his disability but the medications that Hannigan took for his condition. They also argued that his symptoms of OCD were resolved by the medication and there was no functional impairment.
They argued that it was suspension of his license and not his medical condition that precluded him from flying.
Obviously, the appellate court disagreed on the basis “the fact that there exists a legal disability doesn’t negate a health related disability on which the legal detriment is based.” The court found that Hartford’s interpretation was unreasonable and awarded benefits.
If you are an airline pilot whose license has been suspended because of medical issues and your claim for long term disability is denied, contact pilot long term disability denied attorney Nancy Cavey.