What would you do if you could not longer work through no fault of your own? In 2012, the Social Security Administration estimated that close to 3 million people applied for disability benefits. Finding yourself in a situation where you cannot work can be devastating. In addition to navigating your health concerns, you now find yourself in a position where you are worried about how to pay your bills and care for your family. Should you become disabled, there are certain regulations you should be familiar with called ERISA rules.
ERISA stands for Employment Retirement Income Security Act. Enforced and regulated by the IRS, the Department of Labor, and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation, ERISA rules require employers or their disability plan providers to provide information to employees about funding and regulation. Knowing the ERISA rules exist is important before you become disabled so you will be able to act accordingly if you find yourself in a situation where you need the services provided under the ERISA act. You are entitled payment of certain benefits outlined in ERISA rules when you become disabled. The ERISA rules work in conjunction with any private disability insurance your company offers. ERISA rules state participants have 180 days to complete an application for benefits and must be notified within 45 days if that application is incomplete in any way. Often your injury or health concerns become your place of focus, but it is important to complete disability paperwork as soon as possible to make sure you will be covered by the ERISA rules.
According to ERISA rules, an employer must notify an employee if they are denied benefits in a timely manner. Since, the cost of providing disability benefits is expensive, employers often try to delay, decrease, or even discontinue benefits for employees. The ERISA rules protect you from these kinds of tactics, but often you will need the help of a long term disability lawyer to assist you. When you work with an ERISA attorney, they specialize in understanding and enforcing the ERISA rules and will help you fight for your benefits. If your claim is denied, ERISA rules allow you to appeal you claim and disability claim lawyers will be able to review your case carefully to identify where the ERISA rules may have been violated. Not all cases will result in payment of benefits, but working with an ERSIA lawyer gives you a better chance of presenting your case in a way that uses the ERISA rules to support your argument.
ERISA rules are in place to protect employees and provide regulation on how disability cases are handled. Should you ever find yourself in a situation where you are disabled, knowing your rights under the ERISA rules can help you receive the benefits you are entitled to. Consider a consultation with an ERISA lawyer should you ever become disabled.
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