In Today’s Uncertain Financial Environment, How Difficult Will It Be for You to Collect on Your Disability Policy?

Attorney Ed Comitz’s article “In Today’s Uncertain Financial Environment, How Difficult Will It Be for You to Collect on Your Disability Policy?” was recently published in the July/August 2010 edition of  The Journal of Medical Practice Management.

Why Is It So Hard to Collect on My Disability Insurance Policy?

Attorney Ed Comitz’s article, Why Is It So Hard to Collect on My Disability Insurance Policy? Avoiding Mistakes when Filing a Claim, was published by Whitehall Management in its May/June 2010 Newsletter magazine. The article explains why dentists and other healthcare professionals have such a difficult time collecting disability insurance benefits and advises against some common mistakes often made when filing a claim.

Ed Comitz – My Own Story

Living an active lifestyle has always been important to me. It was not until I suffered a severe neck and head injury that I wondered if I would ever be able to enjoy sports or be active again.

Within months of my injury, I began experiencing constant, agonizing pain in my neck and shoulder, lost manual dexterity and fine manipulation skills with my left hand, and had difficulty moving, all of which caused a precipitous decline in the quality of my life. I felt physically distressed – as if I were constantly being injured.

MRI’s revealed two large disc protrusions. From there, I embarked on a year-and-a-half journey of treatment options without success: sports medicine, physical therapy and rehabilitation programs, consults at the Mayo Clinic and throughout the country, surgical consults, multiple epidural injections (interlaminar and transforminal), facet injections, trigger point injections, massage, chiropractic, traction, Ibuprofen and muscles relaxers. Despite my unrelenting commitment to get better, my condition unfortunately progressed to the point where the entire left side of my body was enormously tense, including my hip, leg and foot. I started losing proprioception in my foot and ambulated with an irregular gait, and my functionality was becoming worse by the day.

This was enormously shocking. I then consulted with another neurosurgeon and had more MRIs, which now revealed possible spinal cord involvement. I was admitted to Barrow Neurological Institute, where I underwent a multi-level discectomy and fusion. I have spent over a year rehabilitating and the process has been self-revealing, always too slow, but with significant progress over time. I now enjoy skiing, playing tennis, hiking, biking, swimming and jogging in moderation. While I have improved exponentially since the surgery, I still have limitations and struggles, and know that my condition can be aggravated if I do not take very good care of myself.

Most of my clients are physicians and dentists, and many have conditions similar to mine. As an attorney, I can keep working – if I drop a pen or get a cramp in my side, I can take a break or stretch, then resume working.  If I were a medical professional, though, I would not be able to sustain positioning for long periods of time, each and every day, and would be concerned about patient safety.

I am strongly committed to my clients and practice, am sympathetic to physical limitations and restrictions that others may not fully understand, and use my experience to provide my clients with the results they deserve.  My firm, Comitz | Beethe, provides representation to professionals nationwide and throughout metropolitan Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tucson, Flagstaff and Yuma.

Planning for Possible Health Problems: How Much Disability Insurance Should You Have?

As Chris Clark writes in a article “Planning for Possible Health Problems: How Much Disability and Long-Term Care Insurance Should You Have?”, health problems are one of the most common reasons people retire before they intended.  But knowing how much and which disability and long-term care coverages to purchase can be complicated.  Disability attorney Ed Comitz provides some advice in Mr. Clark’s article:

Edward Comitz, an attorney who leads the health and disability insurance practice for Phoenix law firm [Comitz | Beethe], recommends buying individual policies instead of the typically cheaper group ones, because employer-sponsored plans are subject to employment-law restrictions that include limits on jury awards if a claimant ends up in court fighting for benefits.

And don’t pay the premiums from the practice, he says, because an individual policy could be characterized as a group one if the practice is paying the bills.

A Disability Insurance Q-and-A

Phoenix and Tucson-area disability attorney Ed Comitz recently responded to some common disability insurance questions  for the Pima County Medical Society’s January 2010 issue of Sombrero. He answers questions doctors and other healthcare professionals often ask,  such as, “What is the difference between ‘own occupation’ and ‘any occupation’ in disability insurance?” and “Why do so many doctors’ claims get denied, and how can a law firm help?”

Ed Comitz Interviewed For

Columnist for the Chicago Tribune and freelance writer Janet Kidd Stewart interviewed Ed Comitz regarding his advice for physicians when purchasing disability insurance policies.  The interview focused on physician disability claims, issues with coverage, the types of physician policies available, and examples of situations where physicians have been denied coverage.   Purchasing the right policy is the first step in risk avoidance.  Ms. Kidd Stewart’s article, “Planning for Possible Health Problems – How Much Disability and Long-Term Care Insurance Should You Have?” appeared in the January 2010 issue of Physicians Practice magazine.

Ed Comitz Publishes in Anesthesiology News

Anesthesiology News (AN), the best-read publication in anesthesiology (according to Kantar Media, Media Chek®/FOCUST), is mailed monthly to all 43,983 anesthesiologists and anesthesiology residents in the United States, and offers extensive coverage of over a dozen major clinical meetings affecting the specialty. Disability insurance attorney Ed Comitz recently published his article, Disability Insurance and the Specialized Anesthesiologist, in AN.  The article focuses on the ability of subspecialized anesthesiologists to collect on their own-occupation disability insurance policies despite working in a new sub-specialty.

Ophthalmology Management:
Disability Insurance Roulette

Attorney Ed Comitz’s article, Disability Insurance Roulette:  Can You Collect on Your Policy?, was published by nationally-regarded Ophthalmology Management.  The article discusses difficulties physicians experience with collecting on their disability insurance, and how certain obstacles can be overcome.

Disability Insurance and the Doctor:
Will You Be Able to Collect?

Attorney Ed Comitz’s article,“Disability Insurance and the Doctor:  Will You Be Able to Collect?”, was published in the May/June 2003 issue of AzMed, the publication of the Arizona Medical Association.

The article focuses on own-occupation policies marketed to physicians, the disability insurance claim process, key policy definitions, the hurdles experienced by disabled physicians (including mental health limitations/exclusions), reasons claims are denied, Arizona insurance law (including elements of bad faith and punitive damages for wrongful claim denials).