Many claimants ask themselves, why is the insurance company using a vocational consultant in my case? Isn’t the main issue whether I have a medical disability and I’m medically disabled under the policy? This is a very legitimate question, but here I’ll explain to you why vocational consultants or experts are very important.
What is a Vocational Assessment?
Your case goes beyond just the medical evidence in your case. That’s just one of the pieces of the puzzle. In any given LTD case, you may have one or any combination of the following: (a) medical records; (b) medical opinion evidence by your doctors (such as letters to support your claim or Residual Functional Capacity forms), and (c) perhaps a vocational assessment incorporating limitations identified in those things.
Medical evidence, such as x-rays, MRIs, CT scans, and/or another objective medical test may prove that you are diagnosed with and suffering from a certain condition. But the real question is: how do those findings result in limitations and impairments? You might ask your doctor to write down how they think you’re limited or impaired because of those medical conditions such as difficulty in sitting, standing, walking, bending, stooping, crouching, crawling, those types of limitations.
The vocational expert reviews all of the medical records and doctor forms, and then they give an assessment as to whether you can do certain jobs given the restrictions that are put on you by your doctor. A CT scan or MRI is not necessarily going to identify the difficulty you have in standing and walking. You need the doctor to bridge the gap from diagnosis to limitations, and then you need to have the vocational expert interpret how those limitations would impact your ability to do work activity.
Thus, a vocational assessment is important in any given LTD case. You may even retain your own vocational expert to give an opinion as to whether you could do work activity given your individual restrictions.
Legal Representation in Long Term Disability Insurance Claims
Because the interplay between medical evidence, opinion evidence, and vocational opinions can be so difficult, we do encourage you to contact an experienced attorney to go over your LTD claim with you. Although based in Florida, the Ortiz Law Firm represents claimants across the United States. If your LTD claim has been wrongfully denied, delayed or terminated and you’d like to speak to an experienced Long-Term Disability Insurance Attorney contact us at (888) 321-8131 to schedule a consultation. We can help you evaluate your claim to determine if you will be able to access Long-Term Disability Benefits and how to move forward with the process.