When Should I Hire A Social Security Attorney?

Aug 24, 2011 Comments Off on When Should I Hire A Social Security Attorney? by

Question: When should I hire a Social Security attorney?

Answer: As early as possible.

Nobody really wants to have to pay an attorney fee. A few people decide that they will wait until the last minute to hire an attorney, figuring that they will give themselves every opportunity to win without an attorney. They wait until a hearing is actually scheduled. Maybe they figure, incorrectly, that their attorney fee will be less if they wait until the last minute.  Of course, simple procrastination may be a big part of this. Don’t do this.

First, it is accepted wisdom among attorneys that there is a high chance that a prospective client calling you at the last minute is a prospective client that should be avoided. There seem to be a lot of problems in the cases of people who call at the last minute. Thus, if you wait until the last minute, you may not be able to find anyone to represent you.

Second, it takes time to properly represent a Social Security claimant. The time is measured in months, usually at least three, by my reckoning. I need to meet with you. I need to get access to your file at Social Security. I need to review it. I need to request medical records on you — which takes the most time.  Give me time to do my job properly and I’ll do a better job for you.

Third, it’s unlikely that you’ll save any money by delaying. The fee certainly won’t be less. You’re pretty unlikely to win after an initial denial until after a hearing. There’s a good chance that you’ll get discouraged and fail to file an appeal or make a mistake and fail to perfect an appeal.

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About the author

Charles Hall is the lead attorney for the Charles Hall Law Firm in Raleigh, NC. He has been practicing in the Social Security Disability law field since 1979, is published, and is ready to help new clients win their benefits in North Carolina.