Oregon Disability Insurance Claims

We are a healthcare/professional disability insurance law firm with a national reputation for obtaining successful results for our clients. Our firm has represented physicians, dentists, lawyers, executives and other professionals throughout the country, with the goal of securing and protecting their entitlement to benefits on own-occupation disability insurance policies.

We consult with physicians, dentists, attorneys and business executives filing disability claims throughout Oregon, including the Portland and Salem areas. If you’d like to discuss your particular claim with our attorneys, we are happy to set up a free consultation.

Below are some resources for policyholders filing disability insurance claims in Oregon. If you’d like to discuss your particular claim with our attorneys, we are happy to set up a free consultation.

Does Oregon Recognize Insurance Bad Faith?

The Supreme Court of Oregon has recognized that “[a]n insurer owes to its insured the duty of due diligence and good faith.” Kuzmanich v. United Fire & Cas. Co., 242 Or. 529, 532, 410 P.2d 812, 813 (1966).

More specifically, the Oregon Court of Appeals has explained that insurance bad faith claims “sound[] in contract” because “[e]very ‘contract contains an implied duty of good faith.’” Brockway v. Allstate Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co., 284 Or. App. 83, 95-96, 391 P.3d 871, 879 (2017) (internal citations omitted). The purpose of this duty “is to prohibit improper behavior in the performance and enforcement of contracts, and to ensure that the parties will refrain from any act that would have the effect of destroying or injuring the right of the other party to receive the fruits of the contract.” Id.

The case excerpts above are not meant to be a comprehensive discussion of each state’s first-party bad faith or disability insurance law. They are merely meant to act as a resource/starting point for those interested in learning more about how insurance bad faith works in their state.

You should always speak with an attorney before making any legal arguments relating to your disability claim.

Notable Oregon Disability Insurance Cases

Gary v. Unum Life Ins. Co. of Am., No. 3:17-cv-01414-HZ (D. Or. Nov. 29, 2021); 831 Fed.Appx. 812, 814 (9th Cir. 2020) (Oregon associate attorney was diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS) Type III—an incurable connective tissue disorder—and cervicomedullary syndrome; Unum denied the claim and the court the found that Unum cherry-picked from the medical records and abused its discretion when there was over-whelming evidence that anticipated a longer recovery date after surgery).

Nichols v. Principal Life Ins. Co., 3:19-cv-01047-BR (D. Or. June 18, 2020) (Oregon dentist who was injured in a rock-climbing accident filed for disability benefits; Principal rescinded her policy, stating Dr. Nichols had made misstatements in her medical history and that there was misinformation on her application; Dr. Nichols contested the claim and also alleged that she had not received a copy of her application with the policy, as required under Oregon statute; the court found that there were issues of fact and set the case for trial).

Kitterman v. Standard Ins. Co., No. 6:09-cv-06294-TC (D. Or. Apr. 7, 2011) (Oregon physician with depression, migraines and anxiety filed a disability claim with Standard; Standard argued migraines were a result of Dr. Kitterman’s major depression and therefore he was only eligible for 24-months of benefits under the limitation for mental health conditions in the policy; Dr. Kitterman produced letters from his treating doctors that the migraines were debilitating in-and-of themselves and the Court found in favor of Dr. Kitterman).

Richardson v. Guardian Life Ins. Co. of America, 161 Or.App. 615 (1999) (Oregon dentist filed a disability claim and sold the stock in his practice to an employee, offering to cover practice’s expenses for a period of time, believing that his BOE policy would cover these expenses; Guardian refused to pay BOE benefits and the court ruled that under the contract “the insured must actually be in business in order to incur covered expenses”).

Common Disability Claim Questions

What should I expect when filing a disability claim?

What issues am I most likely to face handling my disability insurance claim alone?

Why are disability insurance claims made by physicians, dentists and other professionals especially targeted for denial or termination?

My disability claim was just denied. What should I do now?

What can my insurance company do when it is investigating my claim?

Do insurance companies conduct surveillance and, if so, when are they watching?

Why does my insurer want to conduct a field interview?

How can I tell if I have a true own-occupation policy?

What are the different types of disability policies?

Oregon Federal District Court Locations

Professional disability claims are often filed in, or removed to, Federal Court given the amounts in controversy. Below is a list of the primary Federal Courthouses in Oregon, but there may be satellite courthouses that are closer to where you live.

Portland. Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Courthouse, 1000 S.W. 3rd Avenue, Portland, OR 97204.

Eugene. Wayne L. Morse U.S. Courthouse, 405 E. 8th Avenue, Eugene, OR 97401.

Who Do Your Disability Insurance Attorneys Represent?

The lists below provide a representative overview of the types of professionals we represent, the disability companies we file claims with and litigate against, and a non-exhaustive list of some of the disabling conditions our prior clients have had.


Anesthesiologists | Attorneys | Cardiologists | Chief Medical Directors | Chiropractors | Commercial Real Estate Brokers | Corporate Executives | Emergency Medicine | Endodontists | Gastroenterologists | General Dentists | Gynecologists | Internal Medicine | Neurologists | Neurosurgeons | Obstetricians | Ophthalmologists | Oral Surgeons | Orthodontists | Orthopedic Surgeons | Otolaryngologists | Physical Therapists | Podiatrists | Professional Athletes | Prosthodontists | Psychiatrists | Psychologists | Pulmonologists | Radiation Oncologists | Radiologists | Rheumatologists | Veterinarians

Physician Claims & Resources | Dentist Claims & Resources

Disability Insurance Companies

Aetna | AIG | Allstate | Anthem | American General | Ameritas | Berkshire Insurance Group | Boston Mutual | Cigna/LINA | Colonial Life | Connecticut General | Davies Life & Health/Disability Management Services, Inc. | Disability Reinsurance Management | First Unum | Fortis | Great West | Guardian Life | Hartford | Jefferson | John Hancock | Liberty Mutual | Lloyd’s of London | Mass Casualty | Mass Mutual | MetLife | Monarch | Mutual of Omaha | National Life of Vermont | New York Life | New England Life | Northwestern Mutual Life | Ohio National | Paul Revere | Penn Mutual | Phoenix Life Insurance | Principal Life | Provident | Prudential | Reassurance America | Reliance | Reliance Standard | Sedgwick | Standard | Sun Life | The Equitable Life | Transamerica | Trustmark | Trustmark Disability Advisors | Union Central | Unum | UnumProvident

Disabling Conditions

Aneurysms | Anxiety/Panic Attacks | Angina Pectoris/Ischemia | Arthritis (Osteo, Psoriatic, Rheumatoid) | Atrial Fibrillation (AF) | Autoimmune Disorders | Bipolar Disorder | Brachial Plexus Injuries | Bulging Discs (Cervical/Lumbar) | Bursitis | Cancer | Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) | Cervical/Neck Pain | Crohn’s Disease/IBD | Complex Regional Pain Syndrome | Congestive Heart Failure | Coronary Artery Disease | Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) | Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD) | Dislocated Elbow/Shoulder | Dislocated Hip/Hip Replacement | Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) | Essential Tremors | Focal Dystonia | Ganglion Cysts | Glaucoma | Hand/Arm Pain – NOS | Head Trauma/Cognitive Difficulties | Hearing Loss | Herniated Discs (Cervical/Lumbar) | Ligament Tears | Long-Haul COVID | Lumbar/Back Pain | Lyme Disease | Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) | Macular Degeneration | Meniere’s Disease | Migraines | Multiple Sclerosis (MS) | Musculoskeletal Disorders | Myasthenia Gravis (MG) | Myelopathy (Cervical/Lumbar) | Myofascial Pain Syndrome | Nerve Impingement/Entrapment | Neuroma | Orthostatic Hypertension/Hypotension | Osteoarthritis | Paresthesia/Dysesthesia | Parkinson’s Disease | Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction | Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) | Posterior Tibial Tendon Dysfunction | Posterior Vitreous Detachment (PVD) | Radiculopathy (Cervical/Lumbar) | Repetitive Stress Injuries | Retinal Detachment/Floaters | Rotator Cuff Injury/Tears | Sciatica | Scoliosis | Serotonin Syndrome | Shoulder/Back/Neck Pain – NOS | Sleep Apnea | Spondylolisthesis | Spondylosis | Stenosis (Spinal/Foraminal) | Stroke | Thoracic Outlet Syndrome (TOS) | Traumatic Injuries | Tumors | Ulnar Neuropathy | Vertigo/BPPV | Visual Impairment

The information provided above is offered purely for informational purposes. It is not intended to create or promote an attorney-client relationship, and does not constitute and should not be relied upon as legal advice.

Every claim is unique and the discussion above is only a limited summary of information that may be relevant to your claim. An experienced disability insurance attorney can help you assess your particular disability claim, or potential disability claim, and determine what options are available to you.