Doctor Wins $1.9 Million Settlement After Initial Denial

Doctor in Bicycle Accident Prevails Over Insurance Company for $1.9 Million After Her Disability Claim Was Denied

A $1.9 million dollar settlement was reached for a physician who was involved in a bicycle vs. car accident that left her unable to continue working.  

Our client, an OB/GYN who was riding her bike when she was struck by a vehicle, shattered her left elbow in the accident.  After undergoing two surgeries, she was determined not to let her accident prevent her from her lifelong dream of working as a physician, and she returned to work as soon as she could.  Unfortunately, upon her return to work, she continued to experience pain, numbness, and weakness in her left hand and forearm. As a result, she was eventually forced to stop working altogether.  Thereafter, she filed a claim for disability insurance benefits to replace the income she had lost. She could no longer work as a physician, treating patients and delivering babies.

Initially, the disability insurance company did the right thing and approved and paid her claim.  However, over the course of the next few years, the insurance company, even while paying the claim, harassed our client and left no stone unturned to unearth “evidence” to support a denial decision.  

For example, the company conducted deep internet searches, conducted surveillance, and located pictures of our client engaged in stand-up paddleboarding, which had nothing to do with her ability to practice as an OB/GYN.  The insurance company also hired a private investigator to follow and videotape her on a drive over 50 miles from her home – all while they were paying her claim.  She was so scared by this behavior, that being unsure who was stalking her, she called the local police department for help.  The insurance company went so far as to send someone to her place of employment (she worked part-time at a hospital in the Risk Management Department; not seeing patients) and improperly disclosed her private medical information to strangers.

Ultimately, the insurance company denied her claim, based on the opinions of its own in-house medical personnel, that based upon the surveillance activity observed, that she could return to work as an OB/GYN.  These opinions were formed without ever examining our client and were, of course, contradicted by her treating physicians who consistently stated that the injuries from her accident never healed to the extent needed to enable her return to work as a practicing OB/GYN.  

Working with our client, we filed a case against the insurance company for the wrongful denial of her insurance disability claim.  

In litigation, Donahue & Horrow LLP deposed the claims handlers and exposed numerous problems with not only their investigation of the claim, but also with their ultimate denial decision.  At a mediation, the insurance company agreed to pay a large settlement that our client accepted. 

If you believe that an insurance company improperly denied your claim for disability insurance benefits, you do not have to fight them alone.  Michael Horrow and the attorneys at Donahue & Horrow LLP have decades of experience fighting insurance companies and can help, at no cost to you.  Call our team at (877) 664-5407 so we can discuss how we can help you. 


If you are facing a wrongful denial of a private insurance disability claim, we are here to help. There are no out-of-pocket expenses for you whatsoever. Call our team today to learn more (877) 664-5407.