Find answers to your questions about employee benefit disputes such as disability, AD&D and life insurance cases.
What is ERISA and why should I care?
ERISA is the acronym for the Federal Employee Income Security Act. It governs most private sector employee benefits offered by employers including health insurance and retirement income. It is unlike any other Federal or State law in that claimants essentially lose their right to testify in court or cross-examine the insurance company’s witnesses (with narrow exceptions). It is one of the least “do-it-yourself”-friendly areas of the law.
I paid the premiums for the benefit out of my own pocket. Isn’t that enough to obtain the benefit I am seeking?
I wish that were true. Not only must a claimant show that he or she deserves the benefit in most instances if the claim is denied, the burden of proof is to show that the defendant acted “arbitrarily and capriciously”. This is a very high standard to meet.
What kind of insurance benefits does ERISA apply to?
With only a few exceptions ERISA applies to virtually any type of employer-sponsored insurance such as health insurance, short and long term disability insurance, life insurance and accidental death and dismemberment (AD&D) insurance.