Long term disability lawyer in Canada: 2024 guide

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Patrik Shore updated on 9 February 2024

Did you know that in Canada, approximately 60% of all long-term disability insurance claims are rejected? The worst part is that this number includes rejections of legitimate insurance claims, as well.

One of the most common reasons a disability insurance claim is denied is due to the insured’s disability not being considered severe enough to qualify for the disability benefit. Furthermore, insurance providers sometimes bank on the fact that the claimant is too tired or distraught to appeal the claim decision. This is where disability lawyers come in.

Disability insurance lawyers can help process your claim for you and overturn your claim rejection. Read this comprehensive guide to disability lawyers covering everything from how they work, how to choose them, and to the fees they charge.

Long term disability lawyer: 4 Key Takeaways

  1. Disability insurance lawyers provide advice and help navigate the claim process.
  2. Lawyers are typically either paid upfront or as a percentage of the benefits paid.
  3. Reputation and experience should be two main factors when considering a disability lawyer.
  4. Long term disability lawyers specialize in long-term or permanent disability.

How does disability insurance work in Canada?

Before diving into the world of disability insurance lawyers, it is important to understand exactly what disability insurance is. In simple terms, disability insurance is a form of insurance coverage that provides the insured with a monthly benefit if they become disabled and cannot work.

Essentially, disability insurance can act as a replacement for your income. Of course, there is a little more to it than just that.

Disability insurance can come as either short-term disability insurance (STD) or long-term disability insurance (LTD), where the former typically covers up to 6 months' worth of wages if you become disabled and the latter can cover you from 2 years to retirement.

Individuals in Canada are usually covered by short-term plans as part of company group disability insurance, whereas long-term policies are usually bought privately.

If you don't have a private disability insurance plan yet, it's about time. You don't have to look further. Simply use our free comparator tool below to explore Canada's best disability insurance plans and get free personalized quotes right here.

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Private disability insurance is a great way for anyone wanting to secure their financial future and ensure that they can continue to manage their financial obligations should their income cease.

Unfortunately, even with the best insurance provider, you may find that you don’t get the benefits you’re entitled to despite becoming disabled! This is where disability lawyers are instrumental.

Why should you get a long term disability lawyer?

Unfortunately, disability insurance providers may find reasons not to pay you the monthly disability benefit that you are entitled to, or they might cut you off from your insurance payments prematurely. The reasons may vary from lawful termination of benefits based on policy terms or unlawful due to poor handling of your claim.

Sadly, all too often insurance providers don’t consider that medical conditions are severe enough to stop an insured from working. This is where the importance of hiring a disability lawyer comes into play.

Disability insurance lawyers in Canada know the law and insurance policies inside and out. They can help provide invaluable advice, help you navigate the claim process and get all the documentation you need to overturn a negative claim decision.

Therefore, if you believe that your claim has been wrongfully rejected or that your monthly benefits have been suspended prematurely, you should most definitely consider hiring a disability insurance lawyer to review your case.

How do you select the best long term disability lawyer?

Hiring the best disability insurance lawyer is easier said than done. If you’ve never had to hire one before, how are you supposed to know who you can trust or who would be most qualified to take on your case?

For example, if you’ve been covered by your disability insurance for two years, but the insurance provider all of a sudden tells you that your disability doesn’t meet the new definition for continued coverage, who are you supposed to turn to for help?

The following factors and considerations might help you select the best disability insurance lawyer for you.

Factors to consider when choosing a disability lawyer in Canada

  • Experience:
    • Make sure you find a lawyer that specializes in disability insurance claims as their unique experience will help you navigate your rejected claim.
    • Ensure that the lawyer is also extremely knowledgeable about Canadian insurance law as it will likely not be enough to solely argue a claim based on the policy terms.
  • Reputation:
    • A law firm's reputation is of the utmost as you want to know that your lawyer has your best interest at heart. Therefore, make sure to only consider lawyers with several positive client reviews and testimonials.
    • Referrals are also a great way to determine a lawyer's reputation, so look for others in your position and see who helped them out successfully.
  • Success Rate:
    • Track records say more than words, so double-check that your lawyer has a proven track record of overturning rejected disability insurance claims.
  • Fees:
    • Disability insurance lawyer’s fees may impact the amount of benefits you receive so make sure you find a lawyer with a price that you are comfortable with.
    • Some fees are only paid if a disability insurance lawyer successfully wins your case.

Who is a social security disability lawyer?

In Canada, a lawyer specializing in disability law, often referred to as a "Social Security Disability Lawyer," plays a crucial role in guiding clients through the complexities of Canada Pension Plan Disability (CPP-D) benefits and related legal issues. They provide comprehensive support in the application process, appeals, and legal advice on disability rights.

These lawyers also navigate provincial disability programs and advocate for the rights and benefits of individuals with disabilities, ensuring compliance with varied regulations across provinces and territories.

Key responsibilities:

  • CPP-D Applications: Assisting in the application process, including gathering medical evidence and advising on eligibility.
  • Representation in Appeals: Advocating for clients during appeal processes if CPP-D applications are denied.
  • Legal Advice: Offering guidance on disability rights under Canadian law, including workplace accommodations and anti-discrimination.
  • Guidance on Disability Programs: Advising on provincial disability support programs and benefits.
  • Advocacy: Championing the rights and entitlements of individuals with disabilities in various legal contexts.

Disability insurance lawyers v/s social security disability lawyers

In Canada, Disability Insurance Lawyers and Social Security Disability Lawyers are not the same. Disability Insurance Lawyers focus on private insurance claims and disputes, while Social Security Disability Lawyers specialize in public benefits like Canada Pension Plan Disability (CPP-D) claims and related legal issues. Their expertise and the nature of the cases they handle are distinct based on the source of the disability benefits.

How much does a long term disability lawyer cost?

Disability insurance lawyers' fees vary depending on the complexity of your claim, the law firm's experience, and their charging structure. Of course, where cases are more complex and the disability lawyer has a lot of experience and a high win rate, the costs will be higher. Ultimately, however, the disability insurance lawyer's costs will be determined by their pricing method.

Disability insurance lawyer pricing structure

Just like all lawyers, disability lawyers can charge their clients using two different methods: flat rate charges or contingency fees.

Flat rate: Some disability insurance lawyers will charge a flat rate for their services, and the price of their services will fluctuate between clients and the amount of work required on the case.

Advantages of flat rate fees

  • The disability lawyer’s fees are transparent and agreed upon upfront
  • The client knows exactly how much their insurance claim will cost them

Disadvantages of flat rate fees

  • The money is usually paid upfront regardless of the claim outcome
  • Some people may not be able to afford the lump sum cost of the disability insurance lawyer

Contingency fee: Usually, long-term disability insurance lawyers will provide their clients with a contingency fee option. This form of payment ensures that the lawyers receive a percentage of the final benefit that is awarded to the client if the disability insurance claim is successful.

A disability insurance contingency fee plan will likely cost the claimant anywhere between 25%-50% of the final benefit. On the other hand, if the disability insurance lawyer is unsuccessful, the claimant won’t have to pay them anything.

Advantages of a contingency fee plan

  • The claimant does not have to pay the disability insurance lawyer upfront
  • No payment is made if the lawyer i unsuccessful

Disadvantages of a contingency fee plan

  • The fees paid to the disability insurance lawyer will significantly reduce the amount of the benefit received by the claimant

Is there a consultation fee?

Some disability insurance lawyers will offer free consultations to review your case, while others may charge a small fee. Despite the cost, the small disability lawyer free consultation may be worth it if the law firm in question is highly regarded and has ample experience.

Before you explore disability lawyer options, it's best to find a good long term disability insurance plan that covers all your needs. You can use our free tool below to explore the best disability insurance plans in the market and get quick quotes right here.

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Do long term disability lawyers also help with group disability insurance plans?

Yes, long-term disability lawyers in Canada often assist with issues related to group disability insurance plans. They provide legal assistance for individuals who are part of a group plan, typically offered through employers, and face challenges in obtaining their entitled benefits. This includes helping with filing claims, navigating disputes, and representing clients in cases of denied or underpaid benefits under these group plans.

How to look for long term disability insurance lawyers in Canada?

Long-term disability insurance lawyers specialize in cases where you, the claimant, have a long-term or permanent disability. These cases can be particularly complex, as they often involve large sums of money and require a deep understanding of the nuances of long-term disability insurance policies as well as Canadian law.

The best long-term disability insurance lawyers in Canada will have a solid and proven track record in this area and will be familiar with the tactics that insurance companies may use to limit claims.

Additionally, specialist long-term disability insurance lawyers will likely also have a panel of medical experts associated with the firm who can help provide updated medical reports, reviews, and testimonies to help your case.

Dealing with long-term disability is extremely stressful in its own right, let alone having to deal with insurance providers and lawyers. So make sure that your long-term disability insurance lawyers are understanding, compassionate, and upfront about the entire legal process you will have to go through.

How to find a disability lawyer near me?

Finding disability insurance lawyers near you is easier than you might think. Simply start by doing a quick online search for "disability insurance lawyers near me".

If you're in Toronto, for example, you could also type "disability lawyer Toronto" or "long term disability lawyer Toronto" or "Toronto disability lawyer". This should give you a list of lawyers in your area who specialize in this field.

Once you have a list, you can start looking further into each lawyer individually. Look at their website, check out their reviews, and see what their past clients have to say about them. You should also contact the disability lawyers directly, either by phone or email, to get a feel for their professionalism and approachability.

Remember, in addition to experience, it is important that you find a lawyer that you feel comfortable with enough to trust with your claim. After all, your representation will become an intimate part of your life, working with doctors to confirm your medical diagnosis and getting to know your situation inside and out.

How to find disability insurance lawyer reputation?

Online reviews are an excellent way to qualify your disability insurance lawyer. Remember, if they have the experience and reputation to charge a higher fee, they might just be worth the additional cost!

How to contact disability insurance lawyers in Canada?

Don’t be afraid to reach out! Disability insurance lawyers exist to help you with your insurance claim and they want nothing more than to speak to you about your specific situation.

When you have found a suitable disability insurance lawyer, give them a quick call or send them an email detailing your situation. Most will provide you with a free initial consultation to help determine if they can take on your claim and if they think they can get you a positive outcome on your case.

The free consultation is also an excellent time for you to get a feel of the law firm and if you think you want to work with them. Sometimes, the fit just isn’t right so make sure that you contact several disability insurance lawyers before settling on your representation.

Finding the best disability insurance lawyers in Canada is not an easy task, but it's well worth the effort. With the right lawyer on your side, you can hopefully overturn a negative claim outcome and get the disability benefits that you deserve.

Are there short term disability lawyers?

In Canada, while there are lawyers who specialize in disability law, they typically do not distinguish themselves as "short-term disability lawyers" specifically. However, these legal professionals do handle cases related to short-term disability claims. These lawyers are generally well-versed in various aspects of disability insurance, including both short-term and long-term disability policies.

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Patrik Shore Ex: Financial Crime Investigator

Patrik Shore has nearly a decade worth of experience in the financial industry and has been writing for HelloSafe over the past year. Having started his career investigating financial crime to moving on to financial planning, Patrik has a deep understanding of all things personal finance.