THE BLOG
08/23/2009 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

America's Meanest Insurance Company

We've all heard stories of people having to fight tooth-and-nail to get insurance companies to pay for procedures they thought were covered by their policy, but the case of Jennifer Gentry appears to take insurer meanness to a new level.

Gentry, 39, suffers from an auto immune condition known as "relapsing polychondritis" that causes her body to attack its own cartilage and other formations, including her teeth. All of her natural teeth had to be extracted. Because her husband, Richard, is a Miami police officer, the procedure was paid for by the Fraternal Order of Police Miami Lodge #20 Insurance Trust Fund. Six months later, Gentry's gums had healed sufficiently to allow her to have restorations implanted where her teeth used to be. But her insurer refused to pay for the implants, claiming that they were "cosmetic" in nature.

Last week Gentry filed suit against the Fraternal Order of Police Miami Lodge #20 Insurance Trust Fund on the basis that her desire for teeth is not cosmetic and that she should be allowed "to have and use teeth to chew, bite, and eat food."

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