Is it Too Late to Appeal Your LTD Denial? The Importance of Understanding Your Limitation Period
Have you ever applied for (or received) long-term disability insurance (LTD)? If you have, there’s a possibility your benefits may have been denied or terminated at some point. If you feel that your benefits have been wrongly denied or terminated, you may start a legal action against your disability insurer.
Whether you decide to pursue this route, it’s important to keep in mind that you have a limited time to initiate a lawsuit. This is because any lawsuit against your disability insurer is subject to a limitation period, which refers to the amount of time you have to file a legal action. In Nova Scotia, for example, the provincial government has passed legislation which sets out a limitation period of two years for most claims. If you do not file your lawsuit within the allotted limitation period, you may lose your right to sue for the denial or termination of your benefits.
However, the two-year limitation period in Nova Scotia does not apply to all claims. There are some exceptions, and this is particularly so when it comes to LTD benefits, which often include their own limitation period in the terms of the contract. This limitation period is typically one year; however, it is different for every case.
It can be confusing to sort out all the different limitation periods that apply to various types of claims and insurance policies. A common question that one might ask is whether the two-year limitation period contained in the provincial legislation trumps the period set out in your LTD contract. This issue was recently dealt with by the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal in Cameron v. NSAHO. In that case, Justice Bourgeois found that the two-year period in the provincial legislation is superseded by the one-year period contained in the LTD contract.
So, the take-away is that it is important to be aware that your claim for LTD benefits may be subject to a limitation period that is shorter than the two-year period set out in the provincial legislation. It is important to look at the terms of your LTD contract to determine the applicable limitation period. Every LTD contract is different, so there is no blanket rule that applies across the board.
At MacGillivray Injury and Insurance Law, our personal injury lawyers deal with insurance companies on a daily basis. If you have any questions, concerns, or doubts regarding the limitation period that applies to your LTD benefits claim, book a free consultation with one of our lawyers. The stakes are high, as you may lose the right to sue if you miss your limitation period deadline.
Author: Madison Veinotte