Flawed Vocational Analysis and Why They Are Often So Wrong on Disability Claims

In many of the ERISA long-term disability insurance benefits cases Louisiana Disability Law handles, the vocational analysis used to evaluate the tasks and duties of our clients are so far off that they seem to have been taken from books dating back to what might feel like another century. The reason it looks that way is because that is precisely what is done. 

You expect the disability insurance claims adjuster to dig into your medical records, but did you know that they will also use materials to determine the material and substantial tasks and duties associated with your occupation.  Some useful facts to consider:

Louisiana Disability Law has a deep array of knowledge on the tasks of various occupations. We fully anticipate any denied or terminated claim will include a flawed vocational analysis, and we prepare our cases accordingly.

Flawed Vocational Analysis in Long-Term Disability ClaimsOccupational tasks are constantly changing.  There are jobs today that did not exist five years ago, so it should come as no surprise that federal guidebooks on occupational tasks are out-of-date. The Dictionary of Occupational Titles, which many disability insurance companies use to define occupations, was last updated in the early 1990s.  The Dictionary of Occupational Titles is history, yet insurance companies are very reluctant to embrace the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) from the DOL.  Some courts continue to permit insurance companies to rely upon this stale data.

Your job is different, even if the job description is the same. The specific requirements of your occupation at your employer is likely different than someone else’s at a different employer – even though you are both engineers or production technicians. To truly understand your occupation, Louisiana Disability Law digs into details, and that can make a huge difference. Our position is that that insurance companies must consider not only the occupational title but also consider the manner in which your occupation is performed.

All vocational opinions are not created equal! Whether the disability insurance company relies on internal vocational witnesses or hires external vocational witnesses, what are their qualifications?  Did the insurance company just hire the cheapest witness?  Is the witness certified?  These are issues that must be analyzed in your case.

Did the vocational witness have all your information?   By providing the vocational witness with only part of the information, the insurance company is stacking the deck against you.  What was provided to the vocational witness? Did the witness consider all the evidence before reaching a conclusion? 

A good vocational evaluation provides useful information! You may need to provide a supportive vocational evaluation the considers all of the physical and mental requirements of your occupation, other occupations, and your condition. 

If your disability claim has been denied or has been terminated, don’t wait to defend yourself. There are strict deadlines in disability claims.  Don’t delay, fight back and call Louisiana Disability Law at 985-240-9773 today!

Loyd J. Bourgeois
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Disability and Personal Injury Attorney
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