I was injured while working for Shell Manufacturing Norco. What do I do if my LTD claim was denied?

Shell Norco Manufacturing Complex

Shell Manufacturing Complex in Norco, LA is the second largest employer in St. Charles Parish. Featuring both refining and chemical facilities, Shell Norco Manufacturing Complex is recognized as one of the largest petrochemical facilities in the United States. 

According to Shell’s website, approximately 1,200 people are employed at their petrochemical facility in Norco as of January 2020.

Though the Shell Norco Louisiana refinery strives for safety, accidents can and do happen. Or perhaps the daily rigors of your job have taken their toll on your body. 

No matter the reason, if you find yourself injured or disabled, you are most likely covered by a long-term disability (LTD) insurance plan.

Long-term disability is insurance coverage intended to protect people from a loss of income if they are unable to work due to an injury or an illness.

Employer-provided long-term disability policies are governed by a federal law known as the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). 

Under ERISA, disability insurance claims applications are evaluated by claims administrators who typically work for the disability insurance companies. 

Due to the inherent conflict of interest, deserving claims are routinely denied by claims administrators even in instances where the evidence of disability appears to be clear.

Why would long term disability be denied?

Shell Norco Long-Term Disability DeniedThere is an endless number of reasons why claims administrators deny disability applications. 

Understanding why your claim was denied will help you present the best case possible at the administrative level and in federal court. 

You may also want to seek the advice of a trained attorney instead of going it alone against the insurance company when fighting for disability benefits.

One of the most common reasons why your long-term disability claim against Shell Manufacturing Norco may have been denied: Insufficient Medical Evidence

How do you fight long term disability?

Having supportive medical records is key to winning LTD benefits. Three things that are crucial to winning your claim are:

  1. Seeking regular medical treatment.
    Winning a long-term disability case is nearly impossible without proving you have received regular medical treatment.

    Your insurer will expect you to have made regular visits to your primary care physician and appropriate specialists. For example, if you suffer from a psychiatric condition such as depression or anxiety, you should be seeing a mental health provider at least monthly. If you have a physical impairment, you should be visiting your doctor regularly. They should be performing objective tests, including x-rays, CT scans, or MRIs whenever possible.
     
  2. Making sure your medical records are complete.
    Your long-term disability claim may be denied due to insufficient medical evidence only because the insurance company has failed to obtain all your medical records.

    You can be proactive by asking your disability insurer for a list of the records they have requested and a list of those that they have received.
     
  3. Getting a statement from your doctor.
    One of the most important factors in proving your disability claim is the opinion of your doctor. Having your treating physician provide a detailed opinion as to your work-related limitations is the best way to support your claim.

    Forms from your insurance company are often designed to elicit responses that will bolster a denial. Do not rely on them. Ask your doctor to write a letter that details exactly how your impairment limits your ability to work.

Long-Term Disability Denied? 

Don’t go it alone! Seeking the advice of a trusted attorney is the best way to ensure your rights are protected when going up to bat against the insurance companies. 

If you worked for Shell Norco refinery ​and received a long-term disability claim denial, you need to file an appeal. Call our law firm at (985) 240-9773.

Loyd J. Bourgeois
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Disability, Personal Injury, and Divorce Attorney
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