In Shellie H Vs. Unum Life Insurance Company of America, the Plaintiff, with the assistance of her Colorado Disability Attorney, files this lawsuit after the abrupt termination of long term disability benefits. The Plaintiff seeks reinstatement of long term disability benefit payments as defined by the terms of the Plan.
Plaintiff’s History and Reasoning for Filing Claim
Plaintiff worked as a Director of Compliance in the Denver Colorado office of Old Mutual. This position required heightened mental acuity (due to the management and/or financial tasks involved) and was also physically demanding. It often involved prolonged periods of standing/walking, lifting, and similar physical tasks, particularly during travel, as well as required significant travel that increased fatigue and pain to the Plaintiff.
Plaintiff suffered from primary breast cancer in November 2006, undergoing chemotherapy and radiation therapy in 2007, had parotid cancer (salivary glands), a second primary cancer, in April 2008. She has also suffered from scoliosis and continues to suffer from chronic pain, fatigue, back pain, leg weakness, difficulty in walking, and difficulty with memory, which has led to resulting physical and psychological restrictions. She has been on temporary disability at various times from 2007 through 2009.
Plaintiff’s job duties were limited beginning in 2007 to accommodate her treatment; from that point forward, she has had difficulties working and has not been able to perform her job duties, although her pay from her employer was continued during periods when she was not on disability benefits.
Plaintiff filed a disability application to Unum for Long Term Disability benefits as defined by the Plan. Benefits were extended to the Plaintiff from October 16, 2009 through January 19, 2010.
Unum Inexplicably Denies Future Long Term Disability Benefits
Effective January 14, 2010, Unum terminated future long term disability benefits. Plaintiff filed a review of her claim, including additional medical records to strengthen her claim. Despite this, Unum again denied it on November 19, 2010. Due to the administrative remedies being exhausted, Plaintiff has no choice to file this lawsuit against Unum.
Basis of Lawsuit
Plaintiff claims that Unum’s determination is against the weight of the medical evidence, including, but not limited to, the opinions of Plaintiff’s physicians, and/or medical restrictions on the Plaintiff’s activities.
In addition, Unum’s determination of Plaintiff’s claim was erroneous and/or arbitrary and capricious in that Unum failed to consider all pertinent medical and/or other evidence, indicating that Plaintiff’s medical condition prevents her from engaging in her occupation. This includes, the Plaintiff’s inability to work forty hours per week due to pain and fatigue, as well as the effects of her pain and/or other limitations on her ability to walk, stand, sit, push, and pull.
Relief Requested By This Court
Plaintiff asks for the following relief:
- Judgment against Defendants of violating Plaintiff’s rights under ERISA
- Reinstatement of Plan benefits – this includes payment of past benefits and payment of all future benefits so long as Plaintiff remains eligible according to the terms of the Plan
- Appropriate attorney fees and costs
- Expert witness fees
- Interest on all awards at the highest rate allowed by law
- All other relief deemed appropriate by this Court