Harold B. suffered a severe health problem related to his kidneys and had to have one removed. Worried about his clients, Harold returned to his job as soon as he felt able after the surgery.
When Harold returned to work, he had to periodically reduce his work hours and was never able to work full-time again because of his health. Nearly two years later, Harold quit his job and submitted a total disability claim to his individual disability insurance provider.
The insurance company denied the claim, even after Harold appealed the decision. At this point, Harold came to the OmbudService for Life and Health Insurance.
OLHI reviewed the complaint and learned:
- Harold’s policy only covered losses for “total disability.”
- He had returned to work part-time and before he completed the waiting period required by his policy.
- Harold submitted his final claim after the policy deadline.
- The insurer’s decision strictly followed the policy’s terms, but the company could have communicated the process earlier and more clearly to Harold.
As OLHI cannot consider damages or extenuating circumstances outside of insurance policy, we advised Harold to consider pursuing his complaint in court with a disability lawyer.
Disclaimer: Names, places and facts have been modified in order to protect the privacy of the parties involved. This case study is for illustration purposes only. Each complaint OLHI reviews contains different facts and contract wording may vary. As a result, the application of the principles expressed here may lead to different results in different cases.