A company made an error in how they sold me my long-term disability insurance policy and they offered me a lump sum settlement. I did not fully understand the offer or the basis for the amount of the proposed offer. A colleague recommended that I contact Evan Schwartz at Schwartz, Conroy & Hack. Evan Schwartz and Scott Harrigan were extremely helpful. They explained everything to me in a manner that was clear and understandable and negotiated a substantial increase in the offer that was made. They explained the rationale for their believing that this increase was fair and justifiable rather than opportunistic. I did not want this to be adversarial, and they handled the interactions with the insurance company with tact and respect. These attorneys were efficient and their fees were reasonable. They alerted me to things I needed to know besides my original reason for consulting them. I found them extraordinarily knowledgeable, compassionate, capable and open-minded, and my experience heightened my appreciation of the importance of skillful legal counsel. The attorneys and everyone else I worked with at Schwartz, Conroy & Hack from my first call through the resolution of my situation were outstanding and exceeded my expectations.
After 20 years as an ER Doc I developed terrible insomnia and finally got a diagnosis of shift work sleep disorder, a relatively new illness. As there is no test specific to this illness, and given how new the whole field of sleep medicine was, I knew that filing a disability claim was going to be a challenge and that I would need professional help.
I did some research and selected Schwartz, Conroy & Hack to help me with the process. This choice was based on their experience and success rate in the area of disability law. I could not be happier with my choice. They helped me with every step of the very complicated process and today I received a settlement check. I can recommend Schwartz, Conroy & Hack without reservation.
When I came to see Evan Schwartz, I had already shut down my business, was in the midst of a horrible divorce, had no income and hadn’t even filed a claim. Evan and his team guided me expertly through the entire claims process from start to finish, got me paid and then, after being paid for 6 years, got me a great buyout. Evan’s law firm saved me and allowed me to move forward with my life.
Evan and his team are kind and compassionate, but fought hard to get me the benefits I needed to survive at a desperate time for me. I was blessed to have them on my side.
After being stonewalled with the insurance company handling my disability claim, I decided the thing that I needed was an advocate to speak on my behalf directly to them. After initially listening to my explanation of my claim and subsequent handling by the insurance company, Evan Schwartz took over and literally handled everything with his paralegal, Ginny Wielgus.
Evan responded to the insurance company on my behalf, kept me updated, discussed with me what actions had to be taken, answered my questions and concerns, and literally stayed with me for 10 years to insure that I, as his client, got what was due me. I have since recommended Evan Schwartz to others, and would not hesitate to use him in the future. He was excellent and well worth his fee.
My claim was denied by my insurance company. My medical condition wasn’t understood by my physicians. My first attorney gave me terrible advice. My family faced financial ruin without the insurance safety net I was due. Schwartz, Conroy & Hack and Michail Hack found me healthcare professionals who properly diagnosed me and supported my claim. Michail and his firm gave me legal advice that placed my financial interests above those of the law firm. The insurance company reversed their denial and I am being paid. I recommend Schwartz, Conroy & Hack without reservation.
As a dentist with a private practice knowing I had no choice but to file a long-term disability claim, hiring the right law firm was one of the most important decisions I needed to make. I couldn’t have made a better decision to choose Evan Schwartz and his firm. From the moment I placed myself in their hands, they knew exactly what to do, how to do it, and how to explain to me what I needed to do in order to ensure that I got paid.
I have been thrilled with their representation from the beginning, and they have continued to represent me now for over eight years.
I consider it a privilege to write this testimonial to tell any disabled professional to use Evan Schwartz and his team to assist you when you have a long-term disability claim. As a high functioning, hard charging business executive, it was devastating to me when a serious neurologic condition rendered me unable to work. The added stress of dealing with insurance companies who were incredibly difficult when I attempted to get my benefits was overwhelming. Evan and his firm did so much for me not only to help me financially, but also to help me mentally when I really didn’t think I could make it through this. Evan and his team are what people think lawyers are supposed to be.
Once a high functioning sales and trading VP at a bulge bracket investment bank, I began to really struggle emotionally esp. after the ongoing stresses of some devastating family health issues became unbearable. I kept working until my memory and cognitive functions completely gave out, and I mercifully was asked to leave. Rudderless and with no idea what the next day might bring, a psychiatrist soon urged me to call a disability firm.
Thank heavens an online search led to Evan Schwartz and his team. They helped me understand and begin to acknowledge how far I had fallen, and later the disability claims began paying without contention. Since then, a carrier did challenge my status and withheld payment in part because investigators saw me helping move a washing machine around in my garage. Schwartz, Conroy & Hack dealt with this silliness well and got payments reinstated quickly. I still struggle and resist the notion of being disabled which I think is a good thing (see?), but I am forever grateful to have Schwartz, Conroy & Hack on my side giving me clear, fair, honest advice.
Thank You Evan Schwartz, thank you Scott Harrigan, thank you Ginny Wielgus, thank you to the whole Schwartz, Conroy & Hack team not so much for helping me but more for helping me provide and care for my family. I might not be here today without having met you all.
Desperate and devastated with everything to lose, I put my life in the hands of Evan and Michail on faith. In my heart I always believed they would deliver, and they did.
Coming to the realization that I actually couldn’t do my work anymore was an exceedingly painful and draining process. But receiving a denial letter from the insurance company who was supposed to be the safety net I had in the worst time in my life was like being brutally beaten when I was already down. Like in most other circumstances in my new reality I had to admit I needed help.
I am not an easy person to work with, and the course of events left me unsure of who to trust in what I believe is an ethically bankrupt insurance system. I did a lot of research but I struggled to make decisions about what was ultimately in my best interest. Because of that, I ended up vetting 5 different law firms.
As an attorney, I could immediately tell that many firms advertising “leading practice” credentials were wholly unqualified–I found myself correcting several oblivious junior attorneys in consultations. But what I noticed from the beginning of my experience with Evan and Michail was that they were truly GENIUS attorneys in this field. I was never once punted to a junior associate. They treated me with the utmost respect from the beginning, and I admit at times I wasn’t the same way toward them. I was afraid. I didn’t want to be abused by the system anymore.
Ultimately I bought in, and they took it from there. I can state that as someone who has been on the opposite side of the attorney/client table, transparency and honesty are the most important things in this relationship. I never once felt like they were anything other than transparent and honest. When I wanted the truth on our odds and options, it was provided to me. And at every point in this process I really believed these guys were the BEST people I could have on my side. I never once doubted that if we somehow lost this appeal, they would win for me in litigation.
I’m going through this process again next year. I have to. Its the way my policy is structured. And I will 100% invest my future in their hands.
I can unequivocally state that if you’re in the desperate and devastating position of filing for disability insurance, these guys are the ONLY people you should hire.
As Vice President of a large brokerage firm, I did anticipate having a problem with Hartford Insurance Company and, for that reason, I was advised to apply for long-term disability through a reputable law firm. It was the best advice I could have received and, if not for the efforts of Michail Hack and the firm, I would have had to fight for my rights and benefits all alone against a large insurance company.
Thanks to Michail’s efforts I received all the benefits I was entitled to which made my life bearable through a difficult time with my disability. I would advise anyone who feels they need someone to represent them against a major insurance company to use Michail Hack and his firm.
When you are ill, the last thing a person needs to deal and cope with is being hassled by your insurance company. With the fourth case manager assigned to my claim, it became apparent that my relationship with my insurance company was about to change for the worse. Evan Schwartz and his firm was the firm everyone I asked told me had the track record to go the distance, allowing me some peace of mind. Hiring Evan Schwartz and his firm is one of the best decisions I have ever made.
They listen to me, they don’t waste time, and are not alarmists. They’re supportive partners in all respects, delivering upon their word of providing continuity. They manage my expectations, listen to my concerns and have been worth every penny. It is a great relief knowing they have my back.
Thank you for successfully handling a long-term disability lawsuit for me. When I first spoke to Evan Schwartz, my insurance company was suing me for fraud and my current lawyer was telling me to give up my case against the insurance company and walk away from my claim or risk going to jail. But nothing about my case was fraudulent and I was disabled.
Mr. Schwartz evaluated my case at no cost to me and told me that walking away would be a big mistake, that accusing me of fraud was nothing more than an insurance company strong-arm tactic, that I was entitled to money from the insurance company and I did not commit any fraud nor did I commit a crime.
Mr. Schwartz and the firm agreed to take over my case on a contingency fee basis. Harold Levy, the principal attorney responsible for my case, was smart, aggressive, prompt and kept me in the loop about everything that was going on. Mr. Schwartz and Mr. Levy completely turned my case around and obtained a settlement for me on very favorable terms in a reasonably short amount of time.
Mr. Levy and I have remained in contact as friends ever since. I was blessed to have found Quadrino Schwartz and blessed to have hired them to protect and enforce my rights to obtain the money the insurance company never would have paid me without them.. They lived up to their motto: “We make insurance companies keep their promises.”
Dear Michail: Thank you and your firm so much for adeptly handling my long-term disability claim. Not only were you able to overcome the initial insurance company denial but your work ultimately resulted in the insurance company buying out my claim. You and your paralegal, Ginny Wielgus, gathered and organized all of my medical evidence and wrote a beautiful brief to the insurance company where they, to my surprise, actually reversed their claim determination and started paying me.
Due to the excruciating pain I live with daily, I could not continue as chief operating officer for the technology company I worked for; nor could I not muster the strength and energy required to fight the insurance company adequately. It was such a relief to have someone like you represent me in this battle.
In more than 30 years of professional life, I have never dealt with a more effective law firm. I was being pressured and hassled by my own insurance company regarding my claim before I retained attorney Evan Schwartz, and then he and his staff turned the situation around for my benefit. Mr. Schwartz’ command of the law is impressive — and he knows how to use it to help a client. I highly recommend his law firm.
Hi Michail and Evan!
Thank you for the great news yesterday that my benefits were re-instated. I was very happily surprised 🙂 Our whole family went out to celebrate. We had some tasty mexican food and it was really nice to have some closure on the insurance issue. We’re a pretty close family so anything that affects one of us, usually affects all of us.
We all appreciate the hard work that you both (plus all the others at your firm) put into this, particularly searching out and indentify the most credentialed expert in the country to verify my rare disability. I was briefly in NYC and I wished I had been able to stop by and visit you guys, hopefully sometime in the future I will be able to. Also, you both have an open invitation to visit down here anytime!
Best regards and thanks again.
I was a professional pilot for my entire adult life when I was diagnosed with a medical condition affecting my eyesight which ended my flying career. I had a private disability policy with an insurance company that was nationally known for its unethical claims practices. Thankfully, I turned to Michail Hack to help me negotiate this most important process.
Mr. Hack provided me with sound and practical advice on how to avoid the traps that insurance companies set during the claims process and advised me on how to effectively organize my proofs of loss. But for his help in this process, which was always courteous, attentive, and caring of my personal and individual concerns, I know that I may not have received the benefits that I had paid for so many years.
Evan Schwartz and his team of lawyers fought for me like no one has ever for fought for me before. After a series of bad experiences with both doctors and attorneys, I turned my lawsuit against the insurance company over to Evan Schwartz and his firm. They litigated aggressively on my behalf for many, many years and beat the insurance company at every turn.
After the insurance company refused to pay my benefits and refused to settle, Evan Schwartz and his team won in court, and then got attorney’s fees ordered from the court too. The insurance company continues to pay me to this day, but Evan and his firm remain as my attorneys, making sure they continue to do so. I am very grateful to have them on my side.
Florida Dentist It is with great pleasure that I write this letter of recommendation to other prospective clients of Quadrino Schwartz. I was a practicing General Dentist for 15 years when I began to have trouble with neck and arm pain. I was soon diagnosed with a Radiculopathy requiring rather invasive surgery. After exploring my surgical options and the risks associated, it was decided that I would take time off work to try to recover .
My single doctor very busy practice simply could not stand to be left alone for more than a few weeks and the decision to sell the practice was made. Thinking that my disability policy would cover me during this time, I simply filled out the paperwork and submitted my claim. My insurance carrier did nothing for 6 months when they decided to simply deny my claim despite extensive medical documentation of my injury. I now knew I needed a lawyer to help me. Quadrino Schwartz was hired and Michail Hack took over my case.
Despite me living thousands of miles away, from the very beginning his guidance was reassuring and he quickly developed a plan of action. The law firm continued to medically document my case, took over communication with the insurance company and let me concentrate on other things. After many phone conversations and countless letters written by the firm to my insurer, Quadrino Schwartz was able to obtain all of my benefits for me including 2 years of back pay.
What I know now is that I should have sought out counsel from the beginning of my claim. I would encourage any dentist to look at their options when it comes to an attorney and ask simply do they have the experience to navigate what is likely the most important case of their lives. Mr. Hack and the firm simply knew exactly how to proceed from the very beginning and did so without hesitation. Hiring Quadrino Schwartz has made a huge difference to myself and my family and I am always grateful for all the hard work they put in for my case.
Michail Hack has been a Godsend to me and my family. When I became very sick a well-known insurance carrier denied my disability claim and refused to pay the benefit that I had purchased from my employer. I was unable to defend myself and very distraught after conferring with several law firms that were recommended by friends who were attempting to guide me. I was left without hope. Michail reviewed my situation and took the case.
His professional approach and thoroughness resulted in a payment that was due from the start. Michail, his staff and their persistence were refreshing. He is a true professional. I will always be grateful for his efforts and the way he helped my family and me. He continues after 10 years to offer support and advise when needed.
Thank you Michail
Thank you all so very much for everything that you’ve done (and continue to do) on my behalf. I selected your firm after my best friend vetted dozens of firms across the country on my behalf. It turns out to have been one of the best decisions that I’ve ever made. I wasn’t exactly at my best when we got started on my case. But you all proved to be professionals in every sense, producing great results while balancing expertise with patience and compassion. I am so very grateful and would recommend you to anyone without reservation or qualification.
As former president and chief executive officer of a large, publicly traded company, I understand the need to hire good attorneys. When an illness prevented me from continuing to work and my long-term disability insurance companies started giving me a hard time, I knew it was time to find quality lawyers to protect my interests. Hiring Schwartz, Conroy & Hack was an easy decision because Evan Schwartz clearly understood the issues I was facing with the insurance companies, and how best to manage them. He and his team, including Scott Harrigan and Ginny Wielgus, did an excellent job of understanding and overcoming all of the obstacles the insurance companies used to avoid paying me my benefits. They got me my benefits and I continue to receive them. They are excellent, effective advocates and I’m happy to have them on my side.
Before choosing Schwartz law I was overwhelmed and confused about the whole LTD process and wanted to make sure I wasn’t making any wrong decisions for me and my family. Every law firm that I previously spoke with advised me that they would get a percentage of up to 40% of any compensation that I was entitled to. This made me even more concerned about my current physical and monetary situation. I had just been through over a year of chiropractors, epidurals, back stretchers and ultimately back surgery and was still suffering and out of work.
I met Evan for a free consultation the Garden City office and he immediately made me feel very comfortable. He explained that for my situation it would be best for me pay on a per-diem basis and that there would be no additional cost. Throughout the process I have found that the overall cost was very reasonable. Evan was very sincere and assured me that he and his firm would do their best for me. During our conversation he explained many employer and employee laws and information which the average person is not aware of or familiar with which helped me with my decision making.
Choosing to work with Evan and his staff was one of the best decisions I have ever made. Every interaction with anyone from the firm was always pleasant and professional. Everyone from the administrative staff including Ginny and Lisa are always pleasant and receptive. I must mention Michail Hack and Maria Campese (the Wizards), these two clearly displayed that they’re masters of the law and the processes involved in LTD litigation and they’ll fight for you using the law. If you’re entitled to it they’ll get it for you.
During the most trying part of my life, Schwartz, Conroy & Hack’s attorneys were fighting for my life. I was physically just barely up on my own two feet, with a diagnosis proving to be progressive and threatening my future capabilities.
Being diagnosed and suffering with fibromyalgia and spinal issues, surely to get worse, I felt as if I stood on an island completely alone. In addition, personal issues arose that would put me in a very vulnerable position financially, with no assistance medically at home. My heart felt like it would give up the fight.
For years, I fought the insurance company to get paid with the assistance of my partner, who no longer stood by my side consistently. Now, my island surely was isolated.
I had Schwartz, Conroy & Hack fighting for me in every possible way. My experience with an attorney on another front proved to be not only incompetent but didn’t value me as a person or a client. I certainly had to put all my faith in one place with many doubts whether anyone really had my back.
Michail Hack, Evan Schwartz and their team proved all my fears to be unfounded. From the day I first met Mr. Hack, I was pretty sure he would value my situation and me. Circumstances arose mid-stream that would cause more doubt I would be taken care of the way I deserved. After losing my job, and my only personal support, and in declining health, I was not very hopeful, but Evan Schwartz, Michail Hack and Matthew Conroy fought even harder. I believe they fought for ME, as much as they wanted to be successful for the firm. With my personal circumstances becoming more difficult, they had to work harder at protecting me. I was discouraged and exhausted.
I never dreamed Mr. Schwartz, Michail Hack and Matthew Conroy would rally around me, right to the successful end of this awful journey, and fight harder and with integrity and compassion to make sure I received the help I deserved. Their persistence and skill in my lawsuit forced a powerful Insurance Company to give in, an insurance company who until then was doing everything to make sure I would end up with nothing and completely indigent. The day we together settled my case was like having 3 angels sitting around me and. They made sure I received what I deserved and to feel I was completed protected by them.
Their staff was professional, kind, efficient and always made me feel valued, from Lisa, Ginny, and Angela to every other member of the Schwartz, Conroy & Hack team.
I will always feel a bond with Mr. Hack, Mr. Schwartz and Mr. Conroy… in addition to their staff.
In the most challenging period of my life physically and emotionally, they were my rocks, filled with knowledge, commitment and compassion. I am forever grateful.
Applying for disability, even when the need has become obvious to both yourself and those around you, is not necessarily an easy decision. In my case it meant having to walk away from a long-term career that I loved, and, as is probably true for most people facing a disability and having to make a disability clam, a very real threat to the financial security of myself and my family had my claim been denied or unduly delayed.
As an almost 30-year attorney, with considerable employee benefit law experience, I felt qualified to make and process my own claim. I was wrong. As I quickly discovered, the cruel twist to making a disability claim is that at the very point in time that you need to be at your very strongest, physically, emotionally, and financially, to protect your rights and the financial security of your family, you find yourself at your weakest and most vulnerable. It can be a very lonely and frightening time.
The attorneys and staff at the Schwartz, Conroy & Hack Firm understood this. Phone calls and emails were responded to in a prompt manner. My attorney was always available, even on short notice, to discuss my concerns. The attorneys and staff at Schwartz, Conroy & Hack worked tirelessly with both my employer and medical care providers to both establish and file my claim, and got it approved in a timely manner. Not only the legal advice, but the practical advice I received from Schwartz, Conroy & Hack, based on their decades of representing disability clients, proved invaluable.
The best advice I could give anyone facing a similar situation is that you do not have to go it alone, nor should you. You need strong, experienced, and dedicated legal counsel to fight for your rights and the financial security of yourself and your family. I found that at the Schwartz, Conroy & Hack Firm, and will be forever grateful for their assistance during a very difficult time in my life.
We as a society are not prepared to deal with catastrophic illness, and although I was smart enough to have taken out a Long-term Disability policy in my thirties, the third-party administrator for the policy has a reputation for being unethical.
After my fourth case manager in four years, it became evident that the firm was trying all they could to stop my disability payments, and I was referred to Evan Schwartz and his team to handle the situation to reduce the stress and uncertainty being experienced.
Living on the opposite coast did not prove difficult at all. The ease by which Evan and his team understood the situation, took over, notified the third-party administrator, and removed me from the picture was the first step in an eight (8) year relationship that was supportive, pro-active and provided me wise counsel.
Each time the insurance administrator attempted to terminate coverage under false pretense, the response was not only a hard-hitting reminder of the basic facts in the case, it also reminded the insurer of their fiduciary obligation to me as the policyholder and their lack of good faith.
It was the smartest decision I made. I focused on health related issues and Evan provided substantial peace of mind, knowing my back was covered. Schwartz, Conroy & Hack had seen all of the underhanded tactics before, he was smarter than the insurer. I found the firm to be “Top notch with people I could trust.”
Dear Michail: I just received the box containing my copy of the appeal you sent to the insurance company. To say I was overwhelmed would be a complete understatement. My husband and I could never in a million years have handled this continued battle on our own – especially in such an intelligent, educated, clear and professional manner. (It was difficult to read it all … it was sort of emotional seeing all my health issues laid out in front me in writing like that – but what I know for sure is you know what you’re doing, you’re good at your job and I am so happy to have you on my side).
I can’t thank you enough for your hard work on my case – and kudos to Ginny and Lisa for the parts they played in preparing the appeal as well. The kind attention and caring each of you has shown me throughout this process has truly been appreciated more than you could ever know. Michail, I am so grateful you decided to go to law school and that Evan’s kindness at the beginning of this journey brought me to you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. If that insurance company doesn’t honor their commitment this time … well, I can’t even imagine how you’ve left them any room for them not to … but if they don’t, I’ll be glad to have you at my side in court.
Dear Michail: Now that we have cleared what seems to be the last major hurdle in obtaining my long-term disability benefits, I wanted to take the time to write this brief e-mail to you to thank you for what you have done for me and my husband. Given my neurological diagnosis, it was initially hard for me to believe that my long-term disability insurance carrier denied my claim.
After I stopped cursing the insurance company, I began to take action. My husband and I carefully researched all of the attorneys in our area who dealt specifically with ERISA governed long-term disability claims and you and your firm’s name kept on coming up on the top of the list. We knew that we needed attorneys who specialized in ERISA claims, which is something neither of us had more than a passing knowledge of. As we are both attorneys, you know we were only going to go with a firm that we were confident would work as hard for us as we would work for our clients, and one that the insurance companies would know (and hopefully fear) as successful litigators in this area.
You answered all of our questions, and addressed all of our concerns. We both felt comfortable with you, and confident in your knowledge and your plan to obtain the benefits we were entitled to. You, and your staff, were always available to us to provide information and answer questions. Best of all, you were able to obtain my benefits for me without resorting to a long and costly litigation. You provided the insurance company no alternative but to accept the facts that proved our position. Thank you again. If you ever need a recommendation, please have your potential new client call me.
After practicing law for many years, it became clear that the multitude of my illnesses were preventing me from being effective as a lawyer. I had no experience with long-term disability claims, and the policies I owned for many years were vague and confusing. Evan Schwartz at Schwartz, Conroy & Hack explained exactly what the policies meant and exactly what I would need to do to make sure I got paid. He and his team led me through the process, step-by-step, protecting my rights and making sure that the insurance companies paid me. My family and I can now rest easy, secure in the receipt of my benefits and my ability to move on to the next phase of my life.
About 8 years ago I was hit with a diagnosis of Stage 4 cancer and was given a 40% chance of a 5-year survival rate. Fortunately, I had kept up payments for an individual disability policy with a major carrier, payments for which began three months after disability started. One night I was alarmed by a late night commercial from a law firm stating “If you have been denied payments or payments have been dropped by your carrier for an illness which has not resolved–call this 800 number”.
That carrier was mine. Well, long story short I didn’t call that number but used Google to see who would best represent me vis a vis my carrier (the 800 number was clearly a referral service only) and found that Michail Hack’s firm had extensive dealings with my carrier, including a class action. I’m pretty certain that I too would have had benefits wrongly dropped while I remained disabled (as I am to this day) without Mr. Hack’s and his law firm’s excellent and highly professional handling of my case. Michail is not only a highly competent lawyer but has also become a personal friend.
He has made sure that proper testing and documents were proactively provided to my carrier so that there could be no question of my continuing disability and my carrier never once attempted to think of ceasing monthly payments–payments which are legally due me under the terms of my policy. I have had other legal matters arise in the past few years for which Mr. Hack and his law firm handled in a most professional and timely manner and which saved me a lot of unnecessary stress, cost and needless travel across the country.
I can’t recommend Mr. Hack and his firm any more highly. They are thoroughly trained in their chosen field and stand ready to offer a vast experience to needy clients like myself. I often tell Mr. Hack he is offering me vital and necessary representation. What I call an ‘insurance against my insurance”. I can sleep well at night knowing he is just a phone call away if problems arise, He has even flown to my town to meet with myself and a rep from my insurance company.
My disability worsened over a period of years. My ability to work got increasingly difficult. After many visits to my doctor, it was determined that the best option would be to file for disability thru my insurance company. Although I had much medical data to back up my claim, I was having a hard time getting the insurance company to recognize my disability. I hired disability consultants, lawyers etc, but it was to no avail. I felt the insurance company was putting-up unjustified resistance. It was only until I retained the assistance of SchwartzLaw that the Insurance company saw that my disability was justifiable.
Without Schwartz, Conroy & Hack, I could be still battling with the insurance company to this day.