ERISA Alert – Department of Labor Announces 60-Day Stay for All ERISA Claims, New Policy Will Directly Benefit Consumers
The Department of Labor (DOL) issued a major announcement that granted a 60-day extension of insurance deadlines for some making claims under ERISA.
On March 13, 2020, President Donald J. Trump signed the Proclamation on Declaring a National Emergency Concerning the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Outbreak (COVID-19 National Emergency). Life stopped for just about every American, especially those dealing with insurance and ERISA pre-empted disability claims, the federal government sought to protect insurance consumers from missing deadlines due to the crisis.
This DOL issued deadline, offers relief and other guidance under Title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) which seeks to help employee benefit plans and the people who use them. Participants, beneficiaries, employers and plan sponsors are all struggling to cope with the coronavirus pandemic, and this is a big step toward helping people nationwide.
The DOL’s new guidelines extends certain time frames for participant’s rights to healthcare coverage, offers continuation of COBRA coverage, extends the time for people to file or complete benefit claims and to appeal denied claims. It also provides additional time to make important healthcare coverage decisions.
“This two-month stay dated from the end of the National Emergency order is a huge benefit for insurance consumers across the country,” said Frank N. Darras, founder of DarrasLaw. “So many people are unable to visit their doctors and other medical professionals in order to get their disability insurance claims verified. Thankfully, the federal government has taken a timely and necessary stance and allowed people a longer period of time to make their claims properly.”
Earlier this year, Mr. Darras wrote an open letter to President Donald Trump asking for this and other relief for insurance claims. In his letter, Mr. Darras wrote that the nation required a pause to allow policyholders time to get the proper care and treatment. They also needed additional time to submit, or have family, friends, or counsel file insurance documentation, administrative appeals and/or lawsuits.
“The insurance industry has time-sensitive deadlines for every stage of the claims process and this stay will allow people more time to adjust,” Mr. Darras added. “From appeals, to lawsuits and the like, this ERISA stay is a big win for insurance consumers everywhere.”
To learn more about the specifics of the stay, please go to: https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/ebsa/temporary-postings/covid-19-final-rule.pdf
DarrasLaw is the nation’s top disability insurance litigation firm. Led by Frank N. Darras, their legal team reviews more than 2,500 claims a month from all across America. DarrasLaw has seen, evaluated, litigated, and resolved more group and individual disability and long-term care cases than any disability and long-term care firm in the United States.