Social Security Disability Resource Center
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When is the time to get a disability lawyer?
Some people will get an attorney or non-attorney representative at the very start; however; most wait until they receive their initial disability decision. That isn't a bad approach to take. At the initial disability claim level, i.e. the application, a representative usually has very little involvement with the case. If you obtain representation at this stage of the process, you will have to pay a fee if the case is won and there is a back payment of benefits. In most cases, that will be a fee paid for not much being done on your behalf.
How much is the attorney fee? This is set by law. The Social Security representation fee is 25% of your back payment or 6000.00 whichever is less. So, if you have a lawyer at the very beginning and you win...you would have to pay that fee if you are approved, even if the representative has not yet performed any service.
When you should get a disability lawyer from the beginning
Now, having said that, this does not mean all disability applicants should exclude the idea of getting a disability representative when they first file. For example, if you have memory problems or other conditions that would make it difficult for you to provide the necessary information to aid in the processing of your disability claim, it could be wise to have a disability lawyer or representative to handle your disability claim for you.
This is how it should go for most individuals, though. If your disability application is denied and you do not feel you are able to complete your appeal online or via paper forms, it may be time to consider a competent disability lawyer or representative. They can file your reconsideration appeal for you to make sure you do not exceed the 60 day appeal period. This is important, of course. If you do not file your reconsideration appeal timely, you may have to begin your disability claim again.
Certainly, if your reconsideration appeal is denied, it may be time to get a disability representative. Simply because the next level of the Social Security disability appeal process is a disability hearing before an administrative law judge. While these hearings are somewhat informal, they still involve a judge and complex disability vocational rules. It would be prudent for you to have a lawyer/representative who is familiar with the case law and medical vocational rules that may help you win your disability claim. The wait time for a disability hearing is more than 24 months in some areas; therefore you would want to give your disability claim the best chance of being approved.
Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center
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Social Security Disability Requirements
Social Security Disability list of impairments
Social Security Disability Application
Can you get disability for arthritis of the knee?
How much income can you earn on Social Security disability?
If you get denied at a disability hearing, can you win later?
How much can an attorney charge for Social Security disability?
Can you get approved for disability based on Ulcerative Colitis?
The Most Basic questions about Getting Disability Benefits
Social Security Disability SSI and whether or not you can work
Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability
Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers
More Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers
Common Questions about Social Security Disability and SSI
Winning Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
The SSI Disability Benefits Program
Medical exams for disability claims
Applying for Disability in various states
Social Security Disability SSI and Doctors - Yours and Theirs
Social Security Disability and SSI Claim Reviews
Social Security Disability SSI System and Benefits for Children
Denials, Appeals, and Getting a Disability Lawyer or Representative
What you should know about Social Security Disability and SSI Denials
Questions about Disability Lawyers and Hiring a Disability Attorney
Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits
FAQ on Disability Claim Representation
Disability hearings before Judges
Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers
Various Types of Benefits including SSI, Mental, and Child benefits
Social Security and SSI based on Mental Disability
Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits for Children
Disability Benefits through Social Security
Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
Social Security Disability SSI: Medical Evidence and Records
Filing your claim for disability benefits
Eligibility for receiving disability benefits
Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved
FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions
The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration
Resources on this site
Social Security Disability, SSI Terms and Definitions
Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI
About the Author of SSDRC, Tim Moore
For Individuals living in North Carolina
Applying for Disability in North Carolina
North Carolina Disability Lawyer
Social Security Disability for insomnia or sleep disorders
What does a child get if a person is approved for disability?
Will working part-time affect my SSD?
How long do you have to be out of work to get disability benefits?
Can disability be denied because of not enough doctor visits?
Can I get Social Security disability off my spouse’s record?
Do I need an attorney to get disability?
Getting the Status of your Disability Hearing Request
Will I be sent to my own doctor for a disability examination for SSD or SSI?
Disability Judges and getting information for your disability claim decision
What do I do after being denied disability?
Can I receive temporary SSI disability benefits?
How to get an SSDI reconsideration appeal approved