We established Roberts Disability Law to help clients prove their entitlement to employer-provided benefits. We understand the importance of these benefits to provide compensation our clients need to pay for their basic life needs. We also understand ERISA’s complex rules and regulations. By remaining on the front line of developments in ERISA, we provide our clients throughout the San Francisco Bay Area with the quality representation they need to get through challenging situations.
ERISA stands for the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974. This law covers claims related to most employer-provided pension, severance, and health and welfare benefit plans. Common health and welfare benefit plans include those providing disability, life, accidental death, and dismemberment benefits. Large employers may “self-fund” these benefit plans, but the plan benefits are usually paid with insurance policy funds. ERISA typically applies to benefit plans established by private sector employers and does not apply to plans offered by a church or government entity.
When ERISA governs your claim for benefits, it preempts all other state laws. In other words, the only rights and remedies that you are entitled to receive are those that the courts have determined are available under ERISA. Although this area of the law is always changing, the rights and remedies available to the average ERISA plan participant are generally limited. Under ERISA, insurance carriers or benefit plan administrators decide whether you meet the requirements for benefits based on the terms set forth in the insurance policy or benefit plan document. If the company denies your claim, you cannot file a lawsuit until you have exhausted your administrative remedies. This means that you have to submit a request for review (or appeal) to the administrator in order to get it to overturn the claim denial. Only when the carrier has issued a “final denial” can you file a lawsuit for benefits. And a court is typically limited to the claims record that exists at the time of the final denial. It is important for you to have the representation of a knowledgeable ERISA attorney at the time the carrier first denies your claim.
We at Roberts Disability Law always prioritize our clients’ best interests. We take the time to learn all of your case details to develop the best strategy for getting your benefit claim paid. Because of our experience and knowledge of ERISA, we know how to get disability insurance carriers to pay claims and to build the best record for litigation if it becomes necessary. We stay up to date on all of the latest ERISA trends by reviewing all of the recent decisions issued across the country, as well as speak and frequently write on matters impacting our clients.
We frequently achieve successful results against many ERISA plan administrators. Our client-centered approach has led to many positive results for our clients, as well as victories in both federal district court and in the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
Michelle not only won our case for me, but was totally professional, confidence inspiring, and reassuring. I felt I was in really good hands each step of the way. After it was all over and I was receiving disability benefits, my spouse and I looked back in retrospect and felt strongly that we could not have made a better choice in disability attorney for my case. Strongly recommended!
I had this misfortune of being denied long term disability under a ERISA policy through my former employer. I was terrified I was going to end up on the streets disabled with nowhere to go since the condition put me down from work and I lost my employment as a result. I was fortunate enough to have been referred to Michelle Roberts who quickly took my case after a review and I received a very fast response and request from the firm to take over my case. I was relieved as within a matter of just days she was diligently…
I am incredibly grateful for Michelle's expertise, wisdom and innovative approach in helping me navigate a quite challenging, and emotionally charged legal situation. Not only was she on point, intelligent and progressive, she was also compassionate and empathetic to the specific challenges in my case. I truly believe she had my best interest in mind, both immediate and long term, and advised me accordingly. Michelle spent a lot of time understanding the complex issues, researching the latest information and opinions around the matter, and handled the resolution with the utmost confidence and professionalism. I highly, highly recommend her and would…
Michelle is one of the most intelligent, professional to the point person I’ve ever dealt with. She has great listening skills and a gentle way of getting to the root of the issue. As a sales professional for 45 years I could have learned a lot from her.
There’s no question that Michelle is one of the most brilliant lawyers one can have the privilege of working with. She’s a partner and consecutive Super Lawyer, so she’s clearly an amazingly capable attorney. But in my experience, what makes Michelle unique on top of her impressive record is her empathy and passion for helping her clients. Michelle has been there for me in action (not just words) every step of the way and has been an unshakable stand of advocacy for my rights and benefits, independent of whether there was a guaranteed return, which is a rare attribute for…
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