San Francisco Insurance Law Blog

What is ERISA, and what does it do?

Even if you enjoy your job in California, you probably do not want to do it forever. Like many employees, you probably have aspirations of retiring someday. To that end, you may participate in a pension plan that provides benefits when you stop working, but you may have doubts or fears about your ability to access that money when the time comes.

According to FindLaw, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act affords you, as an employee, more information about your pension than you would have had access to in the past. It prevents plan administrators from making excessively risky investments and requires them to act in the best interests of you and other plan participants.

What are the elements of insurance bad faith?

Bad faith occurs when one party of a legal contract acts dishonestly to avoid fulfilling his or her contractual obligation. Bad faith may also occur when one party enters a legally binding agreement without any intention or the means to fulfill it. California, like most other states, recognizes an "implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing," which means that a party injured by the bad faith dealings of another may sue the offending parties for damages that result from the bad faith actions. Many parties across many industries are guilty of bad faith, but those within the insurance industry are particularly notorious for bad faith dealings.

According to FindLaw, insurance agencies are bound by common law torts theory, which states that insurance providers owe their policyholders a duty to act in good faith and fair dealings given the special nature of their relationship. FindLaw further details two elements you, if you hope to win a common law claim of bad faith, must prove.  

Important elements of disability insurance

Most people who live and work in California would find it financially challenging to suddenly be without their paychecks for an extended period of time. This may happen if a person is laid off or gets fired from their job but it also may happen if they become sick or injured and are not able to go to work. These situations may arise from a variety of events that have nothing at all to do with their job but nonetheless preclude a person from performing that job.

It is times like these when having a disability insurance policy is something a person becomes very grateful for. As explained by NerdWallet, there are two primary types of these policies: short-term disability insurance policies and long-term disability insurance policies. As the names imply, the biggest difference between these policies is what type of disability they cover based on how long a person remains disabled.

Pillsbury & Coleman delivers punishing hit to the NFL

Another key victory in NFL veteran's bad faith lawsuit for disability denial

The National Football League is a powerful opponent. Most plaintiffs get bulldozed when they line up against the NFL. So it was a huge win when a federal court ruled that the league had abused its discretion in denying the disability claim of our client, former NFL player Charles Dimry.

Pillsbury & Coleman LLC recently scored another highlight reel victory when the court awarded attorney fees to Mr. Dimry, even though his case is ongoing. The court order to pay all of his legal fees was a punishing blow to the NFL. It further penalized the league for its dirty tactics in systematically undercutting legitimate disability claims 

What evasive maneuvers could insurance companies make?

As a Californian, you rely on your insurance to help you out when you need aid. You can also rely on Pillsbury & Coleman, L.L.P., to help you out if your insurance companies fail to provide what you require. Unfortunately, insurance companies aren't always going to be on your side. This can be especially true when it comes to long-term disability insurance.

Long-term disability insurance claims are something that insurance companies often try to avoid, downplay, or even outright deny. This is because this type of payout is ongoing, and can end up costing a company more than they want to pay.

How can I cope with a long-term disability?

Being disabled in California is more than just a physical issue for most people. Long-term disabilities also cause quite a few psychological effects, and these effects can persist long after the disability becomes apparent. Coping with these effects is a must to live a happy and fulfilled life, as explained by

Set goals

False insurance fraud accusations add insult to injury

You purchase insurance policies to protect you and your family in California from the consequences of a life-changing disastrous event. All too often, however, we at Pillsbury and Coleman have seen insurance companies go to great lengths to protect their profits and pay as little as possible on insurance claims. Sometimes, insurance companies may even turn on the very people they are supposed to protect by making false accusations of insurance fraud. 

If you make an insurance claim, it means that you have already had some sort of difficulty or trouble that you are trying to overcome. A false accusation of insurance fraud to justify denying a valid insurance claim adds insult to injury. 

When problems arise with long-term care insurance claims

There are many concerns people may have about their retirement years. This includes worries about whether they will be able to afford long-term care should the need for such care arise.

One of the steps some take in their efforts to address this concern is taking out a long-term care insurance policy. It is estimated that around 8 million people here in the U.S. have some type of such policy. California leads the nation in number of people (over 634,500) with a traditional long-term care insurance policy.

Vedica Puri Appointed to San Francisco County Superior Court

Longtime partner at Pillsbury & Coleman tapped for judgeship

Pillsbury & Coleman, LLP, proudly announces that attorney Vedica Puri has been appointed to a judgeship on the San Francisco County Superior Court. She has been a partner at our law firm since 2005.

Vedica Puri, 47, of San Francisco, fills the seat vacated by Judge Tracie L. Brown, who was elevated to the 1st District Court of Appeal. Puri, a Democrat, is the first Indian-American judge ever appointed to the San Francisco County Superior Court.

       Vedica Puri

UnitedHealthcare being sued yet again for bad faith underpayment

A Pennsylvania woman contends that her insurance company illegally underpaid her mental health counselor, increasing her out-of-pocket medical expenses and jeopardizing her care. Her legal team is seeking class action status on behalf of thousands of other patients and their providers who were hurt by the reimbursement practices.

The lawsuit names UnitedHealthcare, the nation's largest health insurer. The insurance company has long history of lowball reimbursements to medical professionals, which hurts patients as well.

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