Fibromylagia Victim Wins Suit Against Disability
Attorney Calls Insurance Practice to
Cut-off Benefits 'Widespread and Wrong'
SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 30, 1999--Seattle
attorney Steven Krafchick announced victory today on behalf of
a disabled woman whose disability insurance company, Paul Revere,
wrongly cut off her benefits.
The 52 year old woman was an executive secretary for Noevir Corporation
in California, when she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia and chronic
fatigue syndrome in 1988. In May of 1992, she was no longer able
to work, and began collecting disability benefits from Paul Revere
Insurance Corporation. 39 months later, Paul Revere required
her to see an ``independent'' examiner, not a MD but rather a
neuro-psychologist, hired by them. That psychologist did not
consult with longtime doctors who had been treating the woman,
nor did Paul Revere provide the examiner with the woman's complete
medical file. He made no psychological diagnosis, and was unable
to determine what physical condition prevented Linda from working,
as that determination was outside the scope of his expertise.
Paul Revere referred her medical records to other internal doctors
(physicians working for the insurance company), who concluded
without further examination -- and without consulting MD's who
had been treating her for years -- that the woman suffered from
a mental disorder.
The woman's policy required Paul Revere to pay for physical disabilities
and illnesses until the insured is 65 years old. However, those
who are diagnosed with ``psychiatric disorders'' are only eligible
to receive benefits for up to two years. Based on their altered
diagnosis, Paul Revere cut off her benefits.
The judgment rendered by Judge Robert Lasnik, Federal District
Court in Seattle, orders Paul Revere to pay all back benefits
and re-instate her contract benefits. According to attorney Krafchick,
``Paul Revere never should have done this to her. My client and
her employer paid their premiums. Paul Revere should have honored
``This is the plight that I see with so many of my fibromyalgia
and chronic fatigue syndrome clients. Disability insurance companies
target them, and that's wrong,'' Krafchick continued. ``A growing
industry of doctors hired by insurance companies help insurance
companies justify their ways to avoid paying premiums to their
customers. It's a consumer nightmare.''
Source: Company Press Release. Tuesday
November 30, 11:18 am Eastern Time. Contact: Krafchick Law Firm,
Steve Krafchick, 206/374-7370. www.krafchick.com.