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D.M. v. Life Insurance Company of North America (Cigna)

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Green Valley, Arizona

While working as a college admissions officer, our client was insured for both short-term and long-term disability insurance benefits by Life Insurance Company of North America (Cigna). Because of the debilitating effects of Multiple Sclerosis (MS), she reached the point where she could no longer perform her full-time duties. She applied for the promised income benefits under the Cigna short-term and long-term disability insurance policies. Yet, despite the fact that her Multiple Sclerosis severely affected her ability to speak (a major requirement of her job as a college admissions officer), Cigna denied her claims.

Working with Grabhorn Law, appeals were prepared. Additional medical support was obtained from her treating doctors and specialists, as well as a supporting Functional Capacity Evaluation (FCE). Further, Cigna was advised of her approval for disability income benefits by Social Security (SSDI). SSDI had determined she was unable to perform the full-time duties of any job, not just her job as a college admissions officer. Cigna disregarded the supporting appeal evidence, and again denied our client’s claim for disability insurance benefits.

Based on Cigna’s denial, Grabhorn Law prepared and filed an ERISA lawsuit challenging Cigna’s decision to deny our client’s claim for short-term disability insurance benefits and long-term disability insurance benefits. Grabhorn Law asked the Court to find that, because of her Multiple Sclerosis and substantial supporting evidence, our client was unable to perform her full-time duties as a college admissions officer. Prior to the Court making a final decision, the lawsuit was settled to our client’s satisfaction.