When should a lawyer get involved in my case?

In my experience as a Miami disability lawyer, a lot of people wait until they need to request a hearing before contacting a lawyer. Although most people believe that having a lawyer’s help is essential at the hearing stage, and even though the great majority of people with counsel win their cases at a hearing, exactly how necessary it is to have representation in the early stages is a topic of disagreement.

Over one-third of those who file the initial application for Social Security disability benefits without a lawyer will be found disabled. And approximately 15% of those who appeal initial denials are found disabled at the reconsideration stage, mostly without a lawyer’s help. If you succeed in the initial or reconsideration steps, you will save on attorney’s fees. However, it’s hard to predict which cases may benefit most from a lawyer’s assistance.

Generally speaking, lawyers never get involved when someone is simply filing an application. The SSA makes it difficult for a lawyer to assist at this point. As a rule, disability lawyers won’t get involved until after an initial denial is issued and a legal controversy exists. Very rarely, however, a claimant brings us a rather unusual legal problem. We may consider handling such cases before an initial determination is issued.

At the reconsideration stage, we will agree to evaluate the case even though it’s harder to evaluate at this stage than at the hearing stage. However, it is often difficult to determine if a claimant will be disabled for twelve months, which is required by the Social Security Act. It’s also harder to access a file at the SSA at the reconsideration stage if we have questions. Therefore, if you want us to represent you at the reconsideration stage, we may ask you gather more records so that we have more information.

If you want us to assist you in the initial or reconsideration phase, call us to discuss your individual situation. Otherwise, the best time to contact us is right after you get the reconsideration denial.

Contact Miami disability lawyer Dierdre DiBiaggio, today – by phone, email, or the Free Claim Evaluation form – for a confidential consultation.