(740) 374-5346 ethan@fieldsdehmlow.com


Attorney Ethan Vessels understands that you exchange your labor and time for the benefits your employer provides. When needed benefits like life, health, COBRA, disability, or accidental death and dismemberment benefits are denied when they are needed most, you have legal options to pursue and enforce your rights.  He has experience in successfully taking on life insurance companies and forcing them to honor their contractual obligations. Attorney Vessels has represented clients throughout Ohio and West Virginia. Attorney Vessels represents clients in the following types of insurance cases:

  • Health insurance claim denials
  • Life insurance claims, including eligibility decisions 
  • Accidental death and dismemberment policies
  • Long-term disability insurance
  • Automobile insurance claims, uninsured/underinsured motorists coverage
  • Specialty insurance policies, such as mortgage payment disability policies

A former insurance company attorney, Attorney Ethan Vessels understands personal injury law from the perspective of both the plaintiff and the defendant. He will thoroughly investigate and prepare your case, then negotiate or litigate your case with full knowledge of the legal strategies used by the insurance companies. Ethan Vessels has successfully obtained benefits for employees throughout Southeastern Ohio, including claims for:

  • Pension benefits
  • Health insurance coverage, benefits, and payments
  • Long-term disability payments
  • Life insurance claims
  • Accidental death and dismemberment insurance claims
  • Insurers have many excuses for taking your hard-earned insurance premiums, then denying benefits.

Have you been denied life insurance benefits? Of all cases involving insurance company misconduct, wrongful denials of life insurance policy claims are perhaps the worst. These denials can occur with privately-procured life insurance policies, employer-sponsored life insurance policies (governed by ERISA), and accidental death or dismemberment policies. Attorney Ethan Vessels is experienced in representing beneficiaries in Ohio and West Virginia for wrongfully denied life insurance benefits. Insurance companies often employ the following tactics to deny or delay valid life insurance claims:

  • Accusations of fraud in procuring the policy or filling out the initial application
  • Falsely claiming that the deceased died from “self-inflicted” causes
  • Eligibility disputes arising from the ending of employment (“conversion” disputes)
  • Unreasonable delays in investigating the cause of death
  • Blaming employers for mistakes in enrolling employees in employer-sponsored life insurance plans
  • Retroactively revoking life insurance policies based on medical conditions

Sometimes the insurance company’s behavior rises to the level of insurance bad faith, which can entitle the beneficiary to recover punitive damages and other extra-contractual relief, including attorney’s fees. Has your claim been denied because:

  • Your medical procedure was “experimental”?
  • You have an alleged pre-existing condition?
  • You are deemed ineligible for COBRA?
  • You allegedly missed an eligibility period?
  • An accidental death was deemed “not an accident”?
  • Your insurer is claiming you are not really disabled?

Insurance companies are required to handle claims honestly and promptly. Often insurers will deny claims unreasonably or without legal justification. Sometimes insurers will unreasonably delay paying a claim or will refuse to make a decision at all. Other times, insurers will make an unreasonably low offer to settle a claim. Insurance companies often will use hard-line tactics with their own customers. Claims quickly become more difficult to document and pursue, so it is important to start the fight early. If you have questions regarding a denied claim and must fight for the benefits you are owed, contact a lawyer for tested legal representation. Since he began working to protect the rights of people following serious and fatal accidents, he has recovered millions of dollars in compensation for clients, including a recent settlement in excess of $1,000,000. If you are a patient, plan participant, beneficiary, or a medical provider who has been wrongfully denied coverage or payment for a valid health, life, retirement, or private disability benefit, please call us. In many cases, we can take your case on a contingent fee, meaning that you will not owe a fee unless we obtain a recovery.


Located in Marietta, Ohio, Attorney Ethan Vessels is one of the few lawyers (perhaps the only lawyer) in Southeastern Ohio that regularly helps employees pursue their job benefits under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).  ERISA governs all employee benefits disputes and mandates that you exhaust your internal appeal rights before trying to appeal to the courts. Has your long-term disability claim been denied or delayed? Has your disability insurer wrongfully claimed that you are not disabled? Under your disability policy, you have the right to financial compensation if you get hurt and cannot work. This is true whether you have a private policy or a policy purchased through your employer. Disability insurers will do everything they can to deny your claim, usually claiming that you are not disabled.

Click here to read our recent blog, What Is ERISA?

We have experience in forcing long-term disability insurers to honor their contracts. We will prepare and pursue an appeal through your disability insurer. If necessary, we sue disability insurers to enforce their contractual obligations. Attorney Ethan Vessels have experience handling long-term disability claims under the federal Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). If you receive a denial letter from your insurance company denying your claim under ERISA, we know the necessary steps to pursue an appeal. And, if necessary, we will file a federal lawsuit to pursue your benefits under ERISA.  We can investigate your claim, create a comprehensive appeal package, and draft an argument detailing the merits of your case and why you are entitled to your benefits.

Ethan Vessels has experience in taking on insurance companies and forcing them to honor their contractual obligations.   Attorney Vessels pursues all claims including claims for the disability benefits under your policy, insurance bad faith damages and, in some cases, punitive damages against your insurance company.  


If you have questions or you need representation, contact us at 740-374-5346 or fill out a contact form and we will get in touch with you.