What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?
How do you Win Benefits under Social Security Disability or SSI?
If I am determined disabled, how far back will Social Security pay benefits?
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition?
What Can I Do to Improve My Chances of Winning Disability Benefits
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Denial of Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
How to File for Disability - Tips for Filing
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How much does a Social Security disability attorney get paid?
Social Security Disability SSI Criteria and the Evaluation Process
How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
What do you Need to Prove to Qualify for Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability SSI and Fibromyalgia
Social Security Disability SSI and Degenerative Disc Disease
Can I Qualify For Disability and Receive Benefits based on Depression?
Answers to questions about SSD and SSI disability
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability Status
Social Security Disability Tips — how a claim gets worked on
Social Security Disability, SSI Disability - Terms, Definitions, Concepts
If You Are Represented For Social Security Disability or SSI, When Do You Pay The Fee?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
Social Security requires disability attorneys and non-attorney disability representatives to follow Social Security fee payment guidelines when they represent disability applicants. If you obtain representation services from an attorney or non-attorney representative, you do not pay a retainer or a fee upfront. Social Security allows your representative to collect a representation fee equal to twenty- five percent of any back payment up to a specified maximum (currently, this is $6000.00 but the max is subject to change every few years) if your disability claim is approved.
approved, they are not entitled to a fee for their representation. But while they may not be entitled to a representation fee if you have no back payment or are denied, they still may be entitled to collect payment for incidental expenses.
Incidental expenses are outlined in the fee agreement you sign with your representative. Incidental expenses might include but are not limited to copy expenses, telephone calls, medical records, travel, or any other expense incurred during your disability case. Social Security fee agreements are legally binding contracts for payment. Some collect agreed upon incidental fees whether you win or lose your disability claim, while others collect only if you win, and still others charge no incidental fees at all.
It is important to read your fee agreement thoroughly. Only sign the agreement if you agree with the fee and incidental expenses.
Generally, Social Security pays your representation fee prior to paying you your back payment benefits. However they do not pay your agreed upon incidental expenses prior to paying you your back payment. Consequently, you are still obligated to pay your representative for any agreed upon expenses once you receive your back payment.
While Social Security pays most disability representation fees through fee withholding, there are exceptions. There are some non-attorney representatives are not eligible for fee withholding and there are attorneys who prefer not to use fee withholding. In these cases, you are still for paying the representation fee and incidental expenses out of your disability back payment.
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Topics and Questions
SSD and SSI are Federal Programs
The title II Social Security Disability and title 16 SSI Disability programs operate under federal guidelines and, therefore, the program requirements--medical and non-medical--apply to all states:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Recent approval and denial statistics for various states can be viewed here:
Social Security Disability, SSI Approval and Denial Statistics by state
Special Section: Disability Lawyers and unnecessary claim denials