Long-term disability insurance companies have a hard time accepting that a disability claimant does not need to be a complete shut-in to qualify for disability benefit payments. Many of our Bay Area clients are participants in ERISA-governed long-term disability plans. They suffer from chronic medical conditions that prevent them from working in a gainful occupation on a regular, consistent basis. As a result of having a medical condition that prevents them from reliably performing full-time work, they qualify for disability benefits. And many of our clients have the support of loved ones, including boyfriends or girlfriends, domestic partners, or spouses. A disability preventing you from working should not prevent you from trying to find a loving long-term relationship. However, many insurance companies are starting to do more online research on disability claimants, including reviewing their online dating profiles to “catch” them in an untruth.
If you are receiving disability benefits from an insurance company under a group long-term disability benefit plan, you should be aware that anything you post publicly “online” will be fair game for an insurance investigator. Be mindful of what you are posting online, including in an online dating profile. In a section where you are prompted to discuss what you do for fun or your activities, simply say, “Ask me on our first date.” It’s a cute hook but it also gives limited information to a noisy insurance agent with nothing better to do than troll online dating profiles.
Our ultimate message to you is to not give up on trying to have a fulfilling life while coping with a physical or mental disability. Below are links on how to successfully date with a disability. Keep your chin up and let us worry about the insurance company for you.
If you live in the East Bay, San Francisco, San Jose, or anywhere in the Bay Area, and have questions about your ERISA long-term disability benefit plan, contact one of our experienced ERISA attorneys today.