I represent a plaintiff who sued Unum after it terminated her long term disability (“LTD”) benefits. ERISA required Unum to render a decision in 45 days. Unum said that it could wait indefinitely beyond the 45 days because it was waiting for information from one of the claimant’s doctors. Rather than waiting, my client sued Unum. Unum then moved to dismiss the case, arguing that Plaintiff had to wait for Unum to make a decision.
In McFarlane v. Unum, U.S. District Court Judge Abrams rejected Unum’s argument, and denied its motion to dismiss. That decision can found on my website in the Resources tab drop down menu for Court Decisions. The bottom line is that disability insurers cannot claim that they are waiting for information as an excuse to act in a dilatory manner. Also as a result of the decision, Judge Abrams will review Unum’s decision de novo, meaning it will not be given any deference.