Finding the Right Disability Attorney for Your Social Security Case
The procedure for obtaining Social Security disability compensation is lengthy and convoluted. Your attorney and her employees will become your closest collaborators. You need to do your research before retaining legal representation. The methods below will lead you to an attorney who fits your case well.
First, before consulting an attorney, arm yourself with as much knowledge as possible. Visit her online presence first. Does the website provide helpful information about applying for and receiving Social Security disability benefits? Or is it only a webpage for the attorney and her firm? You need a counsel willing to educate you on the Social Security disability system and share any relevant information they may have with you.
How are you dealt with when you contact the attorney’s office? Does the personnel seem hurried, or do they make you feel at home? Could they be useful? Do they have empathy? The attorney is the office’s unofficial leader. How her assistants treat you is indicative of the attorney’s character.
Third, confer with the attorney in person or over the phone if traveling to the office is impractical. Did you get a say in the matter? You need to be!
Ask the attorney how many Social Security disability cases she has worked on. How long has she been working with situations like these? How much of her business does she devote to SSDI claims? However, some attorneys only spend a fraction of their practice on such matters, making it challenging to keep up with regulatory developments. They also may not be as acquainted with the judges who preside over these instances. Find a counsel who focuses at least half of her practice on helping people get benefits from Social Security Disability.
5. Inquire about the lawyer’s track record of winning Social Security incapacity cases. No attorney has a 100% success rate, and no counsel can promise you anything about the outcome of your case. Each circumstance calls for its unique analysis. Asking this will give you insight into the lawyer’s approach to case evaluation at various stages. Medical records are the deciding factor in Social Security disability situations. Your disability attorney should constantly assess the evidence to see if she can establish your disability. A competent disability attorney will be honest with you and not pursue the case further if the evidence does not support the claim. Find a lawyer who has won at least 85% of their patients.
6. Find out if the attorney has ever tried a case before. Trial attorneys learn how to build a case, gather evidence, and submit it to a judge or jury. A hearing before an Administrative Law Judge may be required for Social Security disability benefits. You should hire a lawyer with expertise in representing clients in court trials.
7. Ask the attorney if she has ever worked as a nurse or doctor. The medical evidence and evidence of limitations in either physical or mental functioning can make or break a Social Security disability application. It would be best to have a lawyer who is well-versed in medicine because only they can adequately develop the evidence and submit it to the judge to support your claim of disability.
8. Inquire as to the lawyer’s strategy for building your case. You should feel confident that your attorney will keep track of all relevant medical documents and present them to the Administrative Law Judge at the appropriate time. In addition, your attorney needs details from your physicians about the restrictions that make it impossible for you to work. Your attorney will use medical surveys and specialized disability reports for this purpose. You can use these records as supporting evidence. If the attorney you’re interviewing isn’t willing to go the extra mile to collect evidence, you should keep searching.
9. Inquire about the attorney’s motivation for specializing in SSDI cases. The response to this inquiry is instructive. One of the most rewarding aspects of my job is representing clients in their pursuit of disability compensation. Together, my team and I will positively impact our customers’ lives. People who seek my help typically arrive at my workplace experiencing various negative emotions. The joy of calling clients to tell them they’ve been approved for Social Security disability benefits after working through the procedure with them is immeasurable.
Tenth, make sure you know which attorney will be handling your case. The legal team should have staff members to help you collect medical documents and build your case. Disability claims with Social Security require a lot of paperwork. Having enough workers to gather, update, and submit all the required paperwork is crucial.
When you go to the attorney, how do they handle you? Feel like a valued guest or just another face in the crowd? Find out who you can contact with follow-up inquiries as the matter progresses. When can you anticipate a callback? The standard response time for phone inquiries is 24 hours. There should be enough staff to answer your concerns, even if the lawyer cannot return every call personally.
12. Do you trust the attorney and her team? You should feel at ease in this new connection because it will likely last long. Were your concerns addressed during the preliminary meeting? Were you accorded proper courtesy? Were your questions answered about filing for Social Security incapacity benefits? Were the office policies and processes outlined? If you answered “no” to any of the above, it’s best to keep searching.
Ask the lawyer’s customers what they think of her in Question 13. Visit her online profile. Can I read reviews written by satisfied customers? Can you get references from previous customers? Talking to other customers is the best way to get a feel for the expected service.
The best thing you can do to increase your odds of being approved for Social Security disability benefits is to hire a lawyer. But you need the proper lawyer to help you out. If you take the time to consider all the factors mentioned above, you should be able to make a wise choice.
Towson, Maryland resident, and nurse/lawyer Sharon Christie. She deals with situations involving Social Security disability benefits and catastrophic injuries. Learn more about Sharon A. Christie and get a complimentary copy of her best-selling book on Social Security Disability claims by visiting. Her phone number is 410-823-8200.