Our client is a 43 year old Court Reporter who was diagnosed with MS in August 2009. She had been experiencing progressing tingling and numbness through her lower extremities and up to her pelvic area. She was hospitalized in August 2009 where she underwent a battery of tests including an MRI which revealed scattered white matter signal alteration, with differential considerations. Although the third party administrator, Sedgwick acknowledged that the MRI confirmed the diagnosis of MS, it ignored the restrictions and limitations set forth by our client’s treating physicians based on objective evidence. In its denial letter, Sedgwick focused only on the very brief period in which the MS was quiescent and conveniently ignored the periods of paralysis, fatigue, numbness, weakness, confusion, and inability to perform the duties of the job. Sedgwick refused to pay our client the Long Term Disability benefits to which she was entitled.
We arranged for our client to undergo a comprehensive neuro-psychological examination. On appeal, we submitted evidence from the neuropsych examiner who concluded that it was unlikely our client would ever return to her usual and customary occupation. He opined that her motor slowing, psychomotor slowing, and fine motor coordination deficits alone would preclude her from performing the duties of a Court Reporter. He also found that our client’s cognitive deficits were due to central nervous system demyelinating disorder.
Our appeal was successful and our client was reinstated to her Plan, with payment of full back and future benefits.
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