You don’t have to be overly smart to understand why ERISA insurance companies do things in the most frustrating way imaginable.
Frustration is the primary tool of the insurance companies. If they can get a claimant thinking he or she is battling an impenetrable wall of bureaucracy, they are more than halfway home to getting the claimant to give up the claim. And that’s where a good part of the money insurance companies make can be found.
Insurers have a wide variety of arrows in their frustration quivers:
- They deny even the most obviously valid claims.
- They “lose” claimant paperwork.
- They hire doctors who believe it is more important to keep their relationship with insurers than it is to “do no harm” when it comes to claimants.
- They deny, deny, deny because they know that denying claims is and insurance company’s best friend.
It doesn’t take a superior intellect to know that a certain percentage of people don’t have the stomach or personality to fight with others. So, if the insurance company denies a claim it knows that a certain number of claimants will just fold up their tents and give up.
Such conduct results in immediate cash in the insurer’s pocket. And, after 35 years of fighting with insurance companies, we know that such an outcome is the primary goal of most insurers.
Whether you are a claimant or an attorney pursuing an ERISA claim, the one thing you have to have is “stick-to-it-iveness”. Without it you fall prey to frustration. Once you lose your cool, the insurance company has you right where it wants you.
To be able to fight insurers, you should be familiar with their tactics and know what to expect. No move by them should surprise. They will do whatever it takes to try to discourage the lawyer or the client from continuing the claim. They will use the sometimes complex rules and law of ERISA to delay claim progress. They know that most of us have limits that prevent clear thinking about a problem.
While many people become angry because of such conduct and vow to keep going, that very anger is also the insurer’s friend because many times anger prevents clear thinking and clear thinking is required in pursuing an ERISA claim. Keeping an eye on the ball is difficult when you are steaming.
Stay cool and smart. Don’t be distracted by insurance company tactics. Pursue what is necessary to prove the elements of your ERISA claim.
Frustrate the insurer for a change.