As one might reasonably expect, sedentary occupations require individuals to sit for the majority of a standard workday and usually do extensive computer work. The Dictionary of Occupational Titles, sedentary work involves “sitting most of the time, with brief periods of walking or standing” and “exerting up to ten pounds of force occasionally.” Despite the relatively minimal physical demands associated with these jobs, many individuals may still be entitled to Long Term Disability benefits if their disability prevents them from performing these duties.
Conditions such as chronic back pain, sciatica, coccydynia (tailbone pain), fibromyalgia, neuropathy, arthritis, and symphysis pubis dysfunction (pelvic pain) are just a few examples of conditions that can make sitting very difficult. On top of being difficult, many of these conditions are worsened by prolonged sitting, and attempting to perform a sedentary occupation could therefore worsen one’s ongoing pain and overall condition.
Apart from sitting, sedentary positions also require certain levels of cognitive functioning in order to be performed well. Numerous diseases such as head injuries, concussions, brain tumors, or neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s can negatively impact one’s ability to make decisions and solve problems too – in much more severe cases – retain information and effectively communicate with others. Clearly, these restrictions would prevent a claimant from satisfactorily performing a sedentary job and, as a result, could make them eligible for benefits.
As Sedentary Occupations are the least physically strenuous form of work, many long term disability insurance companies make it very difficult to successfully be approved for benefits. They also may focus solely on the physical aspect of your job, while ignoring the cognitive demands of your position. Further still, even after being approved, many policies often change the criteria of whom is eligible to receive these benefits after a period of time. Most often, this difference includes the definition of disability changing from an inability to perform your own or regular occupation to an inability to perform any occupation that you have the education, training, and experience to perform. Due to this change, your insurer may deem you no longer disabled and argue that you have the ability to return to work in a sedentary role and a lot of claims are terminated due to this change in the definition of disability.
If you or a loved one is experiencing difficulties with an ERISA-related short or long term disability claim, having a skilled, compassionate attorney on your side could be the first step to a successful resolution. At Murray Law Office, our experienced team is ready to analyze your case, help you gather the necessary evidence, and ultimately present the best strategy to fight any denials of coverage you may have received. Take the first step in winning your case today by calling Murray Law Office or visiting the firm’s website.