It’s no secret that long-term disability insurance companies don’t like paying certain claim. Often long-term disability adjusters start the process with an interview. If you’re nervous about “the interview”, you should be. When you’ve been receiving benefits and you’ve been called in to answer long-term disability interview questions, you’re probably worried that the insurance company will terminate your benefits.
But dealing with insurance adjusters is not so hard if you start with the premise that telling the truth all the time makes the process easier. Just be on guard.
Don’t be afraid to elaborate. Answer the questions. Provide context. Don’t let the insurance interviewer put words in your mouth. Be polite. Push back when necessary but never lose your cool. Remember, honesty is the best policy. It’s important to know what to expect with the interview, and how to answer long-term disability interview questions. To learn more, speak to Boston LTD attorney Jonathan M. Feigenbaum, Esquire today.
In Person Interview — Any Place But Your Home Is Best
Avoid being interviewed in your home. A neutral setting, whether your attorney’s office, a public park sitting on a bench, or your local coffee shop is better than allowing the interviewer into your home. Your home may shape the interviewer’s opinion that may not be accurate. Also, it’s intrusive. We recommend never to have the in person insurance interview at your home.
What Questions Will the Interviewer ask?
The insurance company will likely ask you several softball questions. These questions establish a record of your responses and to “size you up.” Sometimes, the interviewer already knows the answers. The interviewer has access to your medical records and other data. Sometimes, the insurance company has a comprehensive background report about you, and sometimes surveillance. Insurance companies love searching social media, so if you have been posting, something we caution against always, your answers must be consistent with your postings.
Expect softball questions are along the lines, “What medications are you taking?” “What are the names of each of your treating physicians?” “When is your next medical appointment?” “When was your last medical appointment?”
Now the harder questions:
Has Your Medical Condition Changed or Improved?
If your condition has improved, be honest about that fact. Explain what has improved and what hasn’t. “Improved” is a real open ended term. “Changed” is the same. Changed could mean that your condition has declined. Again, be honest. Don’t be afraid to explain what it’s like suffering from your medical condition. Nobody likes to be called a complainer, but this is one time to not down-play your pain, your fatigue or other symptoms that makes working difficult or impossible.
Tell Me About a Typical Day?
The insurance company will ask you questions about your daily routine. This will include questions about your grooming habits, cooking, shopping, driving, and leisure activities. Often the easiest way to pick a recent day and explain what you did from the moment you woke-up and until you went to bed. Start at 7 am when you start your day and roll hour by hour until you go to bed at 10 pm.
Tell Me About How You Socialize?
And the interviewer will want to know about your hobbies including, going out with friends, engaging in sporting events, engaging in volunteer work, and your engagement with religious organizations. While reporting these activities is not a bar to continuing insurance payments the insurance representative will ask how long you can perform these activities and contrast that to your line of work.
What Are Your Symptoms?
The representative will want to have a clear idea of your symptoms, their frequency, and how you manage them. Explain in detail. Take your time. Do not gloss over this quickly. This is the chance to let the interviewer know what it is like to walk in your shoes. Give examples of what you can no longer do.
Do You Have Plans for the Future?
In cases like this, it helps to have some idea of where you want to go from where you are to where you want to be. If you cannot return to your previous employment, then you may want to return to school (when you are ready) to pick up a different line of work. If your main goal is to watch every movie on Netflix for the second time, it could damage your credibility with the insurance company and the court.
Talk to a Boston Long-Term Disability Attorney Today
An attorney versed in the language of disability insurance and ERISA can help you prepare for your long-term disability interview questions. For guidance with the application process or for help appealing a denial, contact Jonathan M. Feigenbaum, Esquire today for a complimentary review of your claim.