Thursday, October 12, 2017

7:45 a.m. Registration & Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m.

Welcome & Opening Remarks

Martin E. Rosen


Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP

8:45 a.m.


9:45 a.m.

Keynote Address — Why I Threw Away My Ivy League Degree to Do Magic Tricks

Matt Marcy

Master Magician


Track A

Track B

10:00 a.m.


10:50 a.m.
Putting It All Together: Improving Your Chances of Success in Disability Litigation With a Team Approach

Successful defense of a disability claim is most readily achieved when all three participants in the defense — outside counsel, in-house counsel and company witnesses — work together in harmony. The presenter will provide insights into how to ensure a highly effective defense team.

J. Christopher Collins
Of Counsel
Mirick, O'Connell, DeMallie & Lougee, LLP

Explaining and Distinguishing SSDI Awards in the Context of Denying LTD Claims

Recent court decisions and the Department of Labor's new disability claim regulations direct that LTD denial letters contain more than a cursory rejection of an SSDI award. The presenter will outline what courts have found to be insufficient language, what falls within the label of "boilerplate," what the DOL believes is insufficient, and best practices to consider in denying an LTD claim in the face of an SSDI award.

Bryan Bolton
Founding Member
Funk & Bolton, P.A.

11:00 a.m.


11:50 a.m.

Claims Toolkit: The Effective Use of Legal, SIU and Other Resources in Claim Handling

Representatives from a disability insurer's Claims, SIU and Legal departments will share their wisdom and offer suggestions for making the most out of the valuable resources available to claims personnel in evaluating IDI claims.

Sheila Farrar
Claims Consultant


Robin M. Fasoli


Julie Temlak
Cert. Fraud Examiner & Cert. Info. Systems Auditor


Co-Fiduciary Liability, Church Plans and Other Issues That Impact ERISA Disability Claims

The defense guru of ERISA esoterica offers his thoughts on a potpourri of ERISA topics that have recently received judicial attention.

Mark E. Schmidtke
Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.

12:00 p.m.

Networking Luncheon

1:30 p.m.


2:20 p.m.

DI Case Law Update

DI disputes that proceed to litigation often involve high stakes and the resolution of issues with no clear answers. The speaker will highlight recent legal decisions pertaining to DI disputes from around the county.

Adam Formus
Assistant Vice President and Senior Counsel
Guardian Life Insurance Company

Timing Is Everything: "Timing" Defenses to ERISA Claims

"Timing"-related defenses to ERISA benefit claims include issues related to proof of loss, exhaustion of administrative remedies, contractual limitation provisions, and statutes of limitation. The presenter will discuss recent developments and identify open questions for future consideration.

David A. Barron
Associate General Counsel
Mutual of Omaha Insurance Company

2:30 p.m.


3:20 p.m.

Return to Work: It’s More Than Just Physical
Returning to work after a disability is much more than physical healing, it’s complicated! We have all recognized for years that the longer someone is out of work the less likely return to work becomes but we often find ourselves too frustrated in what appears to be a lack of motivation to intervene in the right way at the right time. What we tend to fail to recognize is that thought process works against us from day one. It turns out immediate and ongoing preparation is the key to success. Prudential completed a study that included a quantitative evaluation of subjective diagnoses as well as completed interviews with employees who have successfully returned to work from a disability in order to understand what predicts return to work and how employers and disability managers can effectively intervene to facilitate RTW success.  


Kristin Tugman, PhD, CRC, LPC
Vice President, Health & Productivity Analytics and Consulting Practice
Prudential Group Insurance

ERISA Disability Case Law Update

Lawsuits addressing various aspects of ERISA litigation abound. Focusing on the most important cases from across the country, the presenter will break down what it all means and how to prepare for potential legal changes.

Daniel K. Ryan
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP

3:30 p.m.


4:20 p.m.

Oh, No You Don't! The Challenges of Rescinding a Disability Policy

The decision to rescind an insured's disability policy presents many potential challenges. The presenter will offer insights into the "do's and don'ts" to consider in making this decision, including how to effectively balance the interests of the company, the claims department and the customer.

Jennifer Price
Assistant General Counsel | Litigation Section
Metropolitan Life Insurance Company

The New ERISA Claim Regulations: What Is Clear, What Is Not, and What to Do

The 2016 revisions to the ERISA claim regulations have created some confusion for disability insurance professionals. The presenter will outline and help attendees understand the revisions and how they will impact ERISA claim litigation and claims handling.

James A. Keller
Saul Ewing LLP

4:30 p.m.


6:00 p.m.

Networking Reception

Friday, October 13, 2017

7:45 a.m. Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m.


9:15 a.m.
Individual Disability Income: A Historical Market Perspective

The individual disability income industry has a storied history of product design and risk management successes and failures. Much can be learned from this history as the industry sets its path to success in the future. The presenter will discuss lessons learned and will apply them to the current state of the market and its potential future direction.

Stephen Miller
Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer
Disability Management Services, Inc.

Pre-Litigation Settlement of Denied Disability Claims

Not every denied disability claim has to end up in court. The presenter will discuss the circumstances under which a disputed claim can and should be resolved prior to litigation through direct communications with the insured or his or her counsel.

Ann M. Courtney
Assistant Vice President and Senior Counsel
Unum Group

9:25 a.m.


10:10 a.m.
Managing the Claims of Doctors, Lawyers and Other Professionals

Managing disability claims filed by professionals presents unique challenges. With an emphasis on the financial and occupational aspects of these claims, the presenter will discuss why occupational analysis is critical to the claims process and identify the motivating factors that keep professionals from returning to work.

Ernest P. Smith

Senior Partner
Nawrocki Smith, LLP

Discovery in ERISA Litigation

Under the guise of uncovering bias, the ERISA plaintiffs' bar increasingly is seeking to conduct discovery outside of the administrative record. The presenter will examine this trend and court decisions discussing it, and offer strategies to effectively address the phenomenon.

Jenny H. Wang
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP

10:20 a.m.


11:05 a.m.
Making Mediation Work in Disability Disputes

Can your relationship with mediation be improved without you having to hug anyone? In this interactive session, the presenter will explore best practices to maximize the promise that mediation presents and reach cost-efficient, self-determined, sensible outcomes.

Jeff Jury
Burns Anderson Jury & Brenner, L.L.P.

A Little Privacy, Please! A Discussion of Employee Personnel Files, HIPPA, and an Insured's Behavioral Health Records

The presenter will discuss the circumstances under which the private information of company employees might be produced, and what the insurance companies and counsel can do to prevent the production. Additionally, the presenter will address the protections afforded to insureds, the proper maintenance of mental health records and other sensitive information, and compliance with HIPAA.

Dennis M. Lynch
Figari + Davenport

11:15 a.m.


12:00 p.m.

Individual Disability Claims Issues — What's Keeping Us up at Night?

Co-morbid health conditions, total vs. partial disability, legal vs. factual claims, and social media searches are just a few of the issues currently vexing disability insurance professionals. The presenter will explore these subjects and offer insights into how to effectively address them.

Elizabeth (Lisa) J. Bondurant
Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, LLP

LTD Overpayment Claims After Montanile: Are They Still Viable?

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Montanile v. Board of Trustees addressed important questions related to an LTD plan's ability to recover overpayments. So what to do now? The presenter will offer advice and recommendations for claim managers and counsel tasked with recovering overpayments under ERISA-governed plans.

Peter E. Pederson
Hinshaw & Culbertson LLP

Topics, speakers and times are subject to change.