Disability insurance companies don’t always make it easy for policyholders who have low back strain and pain to get the disability benefits they deserve. The term lumbar strain can include a broad array of back problems.
The low back is a complicated piece of architecture. It is made up of tendons and muscles, nerves that travel from your low back into your legs and feet, bony vertebra and spinal discs between each vertebra.
A problem with any of them can cause low back pain, which in turn, can cause muscle spasm. Most acute low back pain is caused by damage to the muscles or ligaments of your back. While a strain doesn’t sound like a big deal, low back pain can be severe, and it can mask more serious problems with your back.
The Common Reasons Low Back Strain Disability Claims Are Denied
Many claims are denied because the disability insurance company says:
(1) There is no objective basis of the diagnosis,
(2) There is no objective basis for the restrictions and limitations assigned by your physician because of your low back problems,
(3) There is no causal relationship between your low back problems and/or restrictions and limitations, and your inability to do your own or any occupation.
(4) Ergonomic changes in your workplace will allow you to work.
Nancy Cavey, who has 35 years experience handling disability cases, has successfully represented many policyholders with low back problems, including herniated discs, arachnoiditis, and spondylolisthesis. She overcomes a claims denial by working closely with you and your physician. Nancy had low back surgery herself, so she understands what you are going through.
Nancy Cavey offers a free initial consultation and welcomes the opportunity to speak with you about your disability claim.
What Back Problems Are Related to Lumbar Strain?
Lumbar strain can play a role in many back conditions. These include:
- Herniated disc,
- Degenerative disc disease,
- Scoliosis, and
A chronic lumbar strain alone is rarely disabling unless it is accompanied by one of the eight conditions listed above. Generally, a combination of spinal conditions will help qualify you for disability benefits.
How Do I Get The Disability Insurance Benefits I Deserve?
Regardless of your diagnosis, chronic spinal pain can interfere with your daily activities and with your ability to work. If you no longer can work or your doctor has told you to apply for disability benefits, you should take steps before you apply:
- Obtain a copy of your disability policy. See how it defines “disability,” “occupation” and “self-reported conditions.” You’ll need to understand what you have to prove and if there are limitations in your coverage.
Some policies consider back pain without objective findings to be a subjective condition and limit benefits to just two years. You need to know about applicable policy limits before you apply for benefits.
- Obtain a copy of your medical records. Review them to see if there is an objective basis for your diagnosis, what your records say about your report of symptoms and your restrictions and limitations.
One of the most common reasons given for a claims denial is that there is “no objective evidence to support your subjective complaints of pain.’’ Carriers often make a leap of logic and say the policyholder either is exaggerating or faking their pain. Nancy, who has had spine surgery herself, knows what proof is necessary to meet the policy definition of disability.
- Obtain a copy of your personnel file to see if your low back strain has affected your work performance.
- Obtain a copy of your job description. Create your own description of your physical duties with an explanation of how your symptoms impact your ability to do your occupation.
- Provide your doctor with the occupational description. Ask your doctor to prepare a report that explains the objective basis for your diagnosis, the objective basis of your restrictions and limitations, and the objective reasons you can’t perform some or all of the material and substantial duties of your occupation.
- Prepare a pain diary that explains your pain and the side effects of medication and gives examples of how your symptoms interfere with your ability to do things on a daily basis. Your pain might even give you problems with concentration.
- Hire Nancy Cavey to help you file your initial application. The application process is confusing and designed so you and your physician make mistakes that can result in a delay or even a denial of your benefits. Ms. Cavey knows how to prepare and file a winning shock and awe disability application that leaves the carrier little reason to question your claim.
- Hire Nancy Cavey to help you appeal a wrongful denial or termination of your disability benefits. Disability carriers are in the business of collecting premiums and not paying disability benefits. They’ll use any reason to deny your low back claim. The odds of getting your benefits on appeal are greater when you are represented by an experienced ERISA/private ID policy disability attorney.
Contact Disability Attorney Nancy L. Cavey, Who Can Help You Regardless of Where You Live
Chronic lumbar pain due to a lumbar strain, herniated disc, degenerative disc, arachnoiditis, osteomyelitis, spondylolisthesis, osteoarthritis, scoliosis or kyphosis can make it difficult, if not impossible, to work.
Nancy Cavey can review your policy and your medical records, and explain to you what your policy says and how to get your disability benefits. Call today for a free consultation at 727-894-3188.