Does your individual disability insurance policy cover you if your disability prevents you from performing the duties of your own occupation, even if you are able to perform the duties of an alternate occupation? This is called own occupation disability insurance.
At DarrasLaw, America’s top disability firm, our lawyers offer a free policy analysis. As part of that analysis, we will determine whether you are covered if you are unable to do your own occupation, as opposed to if you are unable to do any occupation.
Shifting Definitions in Insurance Policies
One of the most frustrating aspects of insurance law is that there are no universal definitions of terms like own occupation. Insurance company A may define it one way, while insurance company B defines it another way. Even within the same insurance company, the term own occupation may differ from one policy to the next.
To make matters even more complicated, the definition of own occupation may shift even within the same policy, based on time periods. For example, it may be defined one way at the onset of the disability before shifting after 24 months, 10 years or some other time period. While one policy’s definition of own occupation may allow the policyholder to be paid benefits even if he or she eventually becomes employed in another occupation, another policy’s definition may restrict benefits over time in such situations.
Our lawyers have more than 100 years of experience addressing these matters. We know that, in many cases, shifting definitions of own occupation is just one more thing for insurance companies to hide behind in order to prevent paying benefits. We know what to do and how to do it to get you the benefits you need.