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Heart Disease Disability Claims Attorneys

If you have had a heart attack, stroke, or suffer from any type of cardiovascular disease, you are more than likely going to face a challenge when you file a long term disability insurance claim. Some people live their entire lives with a congenital defect or mild heart condition and have no health challenges, while others are completely disabled after experiencing a heart attack. This wide range of the impact of cardiovascular disease gives long-term disability insurance companies room to maneuver and push back against claims.

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Often, patients have good results following a cardiac event, although often, lifestyle changes are strongly recommended by cardiologists to ensure best health for patients.  These claimants often struggle with disability insurance claims, as the underlying condition  that led to the event has been “resolved” in the eyes of the disability insurance company.  In fact, many residual deficits often exist, the need to avoid stressful situations is significant, good sleep architecture is critical, and a good diet with exercise is helpful.  Depending upon one’s occupation and its requirements, impairment and disability may be supported based upon those issues.

We represented an executive of a startup entity who needed to travel regularly for his work, and when his claim was denied on the basis that his cardiac condition (heart attack) had been “resolved,” we were retained to help him appeal to Northwestern Mutual for his continued coverage.  Developing support from his doctor, addressing the need for the sleep, exercise, diet and avoiding stress issues worked to support the reversal of his claim termination.  Our client continues to get paid under his policy, even though he is able to perform limited work in another capacity.

What Kind of Cardiovascular Disease Cause Long-Term Disabilities? 

There are many different types of cardiovascular disease, including:

  • Heart Attack, or Myocardial Infarction
  • Stroke
  • Congestive Heart Failure
  • Chronic Heart Failure
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)
  • Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease
  • High Blood Pressure
  • Angina
  • Peripheral Arterial Disease
  • Endocarditis – Infection of the inner lining of the heart
  • Congenital Heart Defects

If you have any kind of cardiovascular disease or suffered a cardiac event that prevents you from working and you own a long-term disability insurance policy,  you deserve to receive the disability benefits you paid for.  If you have questions about filing a claim or if your long-term disability insurance company is delaying your claim, call our office to learn more about how we have helped others with your condition.

Congenital Heart Defects and Heart Conditions

People born with a congenital heart defect may have had surgery to repair heart defects but in most cases, they require lifelong cardiac care because as they age, they may develop heart disease.  Many conditions can also contribute or even cause heart conditions, including Raynaud’s disease, Marfan syndrome, and autoimmune diseases like lupus.  Long-term disability insurance companies often deny these claims, making the argument that many people with these conditions are able to work. 

Whatever the source of cardiovascular disease, if you are unable to work and need to file a claim for short or long term disability benefits, you need strong legal representation to guide you through the process and help develop the necessary support for the claim.

How Heart Disease Impacts Your Ability to Work

Cardiovascular illness ranges from slight, where the person may undergo surgery, take medication and be able to return to their regular lives, to severe, where the person cannot perform any of the tasks of daily living that were once part of their identity, including working. Many people suffering from heart disease or heart failure exist within this range, with varying degrees of cardiovascular health and ability to return to work and continue to perform their occupational duties.   Disabling symptoms often include fatigue, or inability to maintain a pace, dyspnea on any exertion, and/or lack of cognitive focus or concentration.        

A person’s ability to return to the same activity level depends on the amount of damage sustained by the heart and the person’s overall health. The risk for a subsequent heart attack, stroke, or peripheral arterial disease differs in every situation and only a cardiologist should make the determination whether or not their patient is able to return to work.

Another important factor in determining whether an individual with cardiovascular disease can return to work is the nature of the person’s occupation. A person with a highly stressful job may not be able to return to work, as stress is recognized as a contributing factor in many kinds of cardiovascular disease. While every job has stress, many jobs are truly highly stressful.  A person who has experienced one heart attack is wise to take every step possible to avoid a second.  

Will Your Disability Claim Be Approved? 

It is important to appreciate that a simple note from your cardiologist stating that you have a heart condition and cannot work will NOT be enough to secure approval of your long-term disability insurance claim. Your claim will have a better chance of success if you are working with an experienced New York disability lawyer who knows how to prepare the correct medical documents to support your claim and can work with your medical providers to ensure proper language is utilized to convey impairment.

Heart disease takes many different forms, but all cardiovascular disability claims need to be presented with the medical records and diagnostic test results that clearly and objectively prove the claimant is suffering from severe illness and not able to work. An EKG that shows problems with your heart is not enough.  It may help with showing the condition, but not with demonstrating impairment.

Our New York disability law firm will develop the necessary medical history including the specific diagnostic tests, from the blood work that reveals cardiac proteins created when there has been a heart attack to diagnostic images, including CT or MRI scans, proving your disability, and standing up to challenges by the insurance company.

We also work with occupational experts who provide us with a detailed analysis of the material tasks and duties of your job. Often insurance companies use outdated and inaccurate reference materials in an attempt to show that claimants are able to perform their jobs.  

Side Effects of Cardiac Medications

If the medicine you need to treat and manage your heart condition makes you too woozy to drive, perform surgery or make decisions worth millions of dollars in the space of a few minutes, you can’t work. Any kind of cognitive impairment created by medication that impacts your ability to perform the material tasks and duties of your claim needs to be part of your medical file and submitted as part of your disability insurance claim. 

Can the Stress of My Job Make My Heart Condition Worse?

Yes, work-related stress can exacerbate your heart condition. We represent surgeons, emergency room doctors, floor traders, business owners, financial vice presidents and others whose jobs are stressful. If their health and well-being is put at risk because of their jobs, or if they may place others in jeopardy due to their health issues, they are disabled and deserve to receive the benefits of their disability insurance policy.

What Heart Conditions Qualify for Disability Benefits?

Which heart issues will be approved as a disabling condition to qualify for short-term or long-term disability benefits under disability insurance law depends on several factors. These include the nature of the symptoms and severity, duration, and frequency of recurrence of symptoms, and the impact these factors have on your ability to work. 

One of the challenges with a cardiac disease disability claim is the wide range of heart disease, heart conditions, and recovery that vary by patient, due to a multitude of factors. For example, one person may have a major cardiovascular event, such as a sudden aneurysm, or suffer damage requiring a heart transplant, despite otherwise enjoying excellent health. Others may have chronic heart failure or recurrent arrhythmias that happen repeatedly.  How they impact may also vary.

Someone who experiences a cardiac event and is treated quickly by first responders, receives excellent surgical intervention, and sustains limited damage to cardiovascular tissue may have a relatively rapid recovery and be able to return to work with normal function and blood flow.  Another person may suffer the exact same major cardiovascular event and be unable to return to work, requiring cardiovascular physical therapy, a myriad of medications, and a stress-free lifestyle.  The risk of future impairment (or death) is insufficient to support a disability claim as argued by insurance companies.  Insurers often rely upon improved stress test results or ejection fractions when a claimant has not worked as evidence that they can actually return to work. 

Cardiovascular disease can be objectively measured in many more ways today than in the past. 

Blood tests are used to measure certain chemicals appearing in the blood that are used as markers for pre- and post-cardiac events. Troponin, a protein released into the bloodstream after the heart muscle is damaged, is used to confirm that a heart attack took place, and the level may be used as evidence of how much damage to the heart has occurred.  However, the focus always remains on functionality and how and why one is not able to perform their work.

If you need help determining whether your cardiac condition makes you eligible for disability benefits, our New York law firm is ready to help. From the initial application to battling denials or terminations of claims, the long-term disability attorneys at the Newfield Law Group have years of experience and knowledge gathering medical evidence, building a case, and fighting for the rights to disability benefits. Get in touch with us today for a free consultation regarding your case.

How Can a New York Disability Lawyer Help Me?

We have effectively countered many of these techniques in support of claimants. Claimants fighting a disability claim for a cardiovascular disease must be sure that their cardiologist and physician indicate in their medical records very specifically what tasks they are no longer able to perform. A simple diagnosis of “heart disease” is not enough. The medical records must reflect their limitations and carefully document their illness. Your long-term disability attorneys can help with your initial application, and if you have been denied, they can help review the denial and fight back. They can take over communication with the insurance company and represent you in court if needed. They are an important ally in fighting for the benefits you are entitled to under disability law.

Compassion and Dedicated Determination 

When you work with the law office of Newfield Law Group, you work directly with a partner at a caring, compassionate, and dedicated disability law firm. We have many testimonials from satisfied clients across the nation and years of experience doing what we do. If you or someone you love is suffering from the effects of cardiovascular disease and have concerns about disability insurance, call our offices for an initial consultation with a nationwide partner today at 1-877-LTD-CLAIM or click here to send an email. We offer free consultations for all claimants.

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