Thrivent egregious contract breach and misrepresentation, 1985 contract provision allowed litigation, Replaced contract benefit with mandatory MDRP dispute resolution of appeal, mediation and binding arbitration


I took out a disability insurance from AAL on March 24, 1985.

I believed then that I could trust them.

The certificate contained the following provision/benefit.

No legal action may be brought to recover on this certificate until after 60 days from the date written proof of loss has been given. No such action may be brought after 3 years from the time written proof of loss is required to be given.”

Thrivent is a Fraternal Benefit Society.

They use the term benefit extensively in what they offer.

What matters here are benefits included as part of the contract.

Benefit legal definition:  n. any profit or acquired right or privilege, primarily through a contract.

Clearly, 5.8 Legal Actions above qualifies as a contract benefit.

From the Thrivent Bylaws:


Section 4. The certificate of membership and insurance, together with any riders or endorsements attached to it, the application, the declaration of insurability (if any) signed by the applicant, the articles of incorporation and bylaws and all amendments to them, constitute the entire contract when it is issued. Any subsequent changes to the articles of incorporation or bylaws shall be binding upon the applicant benefit member, certificate owner, beneficiaries and other persons affected, and shall govern and control in all respects, except that no changes shall destroy or diminish benefits promised in the certificate when it was issued.”

NC Statutes  § 58-24-90
The benefit contract

“(b) Any changes, additions or amendments to the laws of the society duly made or enacted subsequent to the issuance of the certificate, shall bind the owner and the beneficiaries, and shall govern and control the benefit contract in all respects the same as though such changes, additions or amendments had been made prior to and were in force at the time of the application for insurance, except that no change, addition or amendment shall destroy or diminish benefits which the society contracted to give the owner as of the date of issuance.  ”

Thrivent vs Perez 2016

“29. … The Fraternal Code provides that changes to the laws of a fraternal apply to previously-issued policies and “bind the owner and any beneficiary under the policy or certificate as if they had been in force at the time of the application, so long as they do not destroy or diminish benefits promised in the policy or certificate.” Wis. Stat. § 632.93(2).”

So Thrivent can change their Bylaws/Contract as long as “they do not destroy or diminish benefits promised in the policy or certificate.”

In 2000 I increased the payout amount of my disability policy. This was allowed in the original policy provisions. There was no mention in my amended contract I signed on April 19, 2000 of a contract change to require MDRP.

My first claims experience with Thrivent was in 2001.

December 7, 2001 Ann Weyenberg letter.
“If you have additional information about this matter, or would like to appeal this decision, please send your written reply to my attention. If after further review we are unable to accommodate you, you will be provided with additional information about subsequent steps in AAL’s Dispute Resolution Program (as set out in Section 12 of AAL’s bylaws).”

I had a more significant claim in 2009.

September 1, 2009 Faye Erickson letter.

“I have enclosed a brochure describing Thrivent Financial for Lutherans Member Dispute Resolution Program (MDRP) and Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws. Members are required to seek resolution through MDRP in lieu of litigation if they do not agree with the decision.”

This is just the tip of the iceberg in terms of the fraudulent/misrepresentative behavior I have experienced with Thrivent.

I might have been ok with dispute resolution and arbitration as an option but having experienced Thrivent’s actions, mostly adversarial and certainly not Christian, I must resort to other actions.

I contacted the NC Insurance Commission on the recommendation of an attorney in 2003 and was very disappointed in how they “handled” the complaint.

Thrivent misrepresented the policy in the letter they sent to the commission and apparently the commission took the word of Thrivent instead of investigating the details of how Thrivent treated me.

The next time I will be fully prepared.

I plan to contact the NC Insurance Commission soon and will insist upon a complete investigation.




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