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CIGNA Bad Faith Story

I am a 63 year old female, who was employed in the health care appeal industry for over 20 years. For years, I had paid for a portion of my disability insurance with after tax dollars. In 2007, I was diagnosed with severe osteoarthritis of both knees and had to undergo bilateral knee replacements. CIGNA covered me for the short term disability portion and long term disability portion of my disability period. In December 2007, CIGNA offered me a back-to-work incentive, so I returned to work for my company in a reduced capacity. CIGNA continued to provide the back-to work incentive so that I was making the equivalent of my former salary. In the fall of 2008, I began experiencing severe lower back and left groin pain. I could not sit for long periods of time or stand for more than 10 minutes without severe pain. I had to use a cane for ambulation. X-rays of my hips revealed no cartilage in my left hip at all and severe degenerative osteoarthritis of the right hip with joint space narrowing. CT and MRI of the back revealed severe degenerative osteoarthritis of the lumbar spine from L2 to S1. I had three areas where the central spinal canal was severely compressed and areas of severe neuroforaminal narrowing. My orthopedic surgeon advised hip replacements and my spine surgeon advised facet injections until after the hip replacements, and then possibly surgery. I was on narcotic pain killers. Facing three surgeries and over a year and a half of rehabilitation, I opted for early retirement and let CIGNA know I could no longer work. I applied for, and was approved by Social Security Disability within two months with no medical examination required. CIGNA continued to cover me until May 2009, my two year anniversary. They sent me for an IME to an occupational medicine doctor, who saw me for a total of about 15 minutes. He stated I could work a full time sedentary job. CIGNA then denied further benefits. I am in the process of appealing this decision with an attorney’s assistance. I have had one hip replaced and developed a postoperative wound infection. There is no way I can work in any capacity, yet this doctor, not even an orthopedist or spine surgeon, says I can work. I can barely walk with a cane. This was totally unfair and has caused extreme economic hardship for me.

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Bev November 12, 2009, 11:48 am

    Wow, that is terrible! I have Cigna Disability, too. My two years will be coming in June 2009. I dread that day because I, too will face economic hardship and likely will have to sell my townhouse. My doctor said that I can only work part time. I recently started working working for JLodge, a company who only hires disabled people to work from home. However, that money would not make up for what I get from Cigna. The stress caused by waiting for Cigna to “pull the plug” is very detrimental to my health.

  • Byron July 10, 2010, 10:41 am

    I too have Cigna LTD and received benefits from them for over 5 years until I went to an IME in which the doctor agreed I was disabled yet an in-house review by Cigna concluded i could work. I only reason Cigna paid the claim was I documented absolute proof of FRAUD. Cigna claimed I was not disabled because of an operation corrected the problem-only I NEVER had the operation cited by Cigna, it never happened. Our so-called legal system allows this crap to happen to sick folks by the thousands and does nothing. I intend to fight the crooks at Cigna

  • Jan W. October 2, 2012, 10:50 am

    I injured my back and was paid 5 weeks short term. Sent to a Chiropractor for therapy that done more damage to my back. I have three buldging discs. Denied short term because I was ordered to complete bed rest and could not take therapy. Cigna has my EMG and CAT scan results but refuse to pay me my short term. I filed a claim with the insurance commission. I have lost my job and my insurance because of this.

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