How Do you Hire the Best Social Security Lawyer for You?

DisabilityLawyer.com
Andrew Kinney

Lawyers go to law school, become licensed, and receive much on-the-job training in their area of practice.  In this age of specialization, we should expect to hire lawyer with on-the-job training in the area of law we want help with.  If you want to hire the best Social Security lawyer in a law firm, you have a right to know how many years’ experience your lawyer has practicing Social Security Disability law.  You should also find out how many lawyers practice the same area of law in the law firm.  Dust, not experience, develops well in a vacuum.

If you have a Social Security denial, you have a right to hire a licensed lawyer to help you.  You face the possibility of meeting a federal Social Security judge who will question you under oath.  Experts may testify against you.  You need your Social Security lawyer to cross-examine those experts and argue the law to your judge.  High expectations.  Here is a list of what the best Social Security lawyer should do for you.  Use this list to decide who to hire before signing anything. The best Social Security lawyer should listen to you.  Your lawyer and law firm should, above anything else, listen to you and understand your medical problems.  The best Social Security lawyer for you will need to know exactly what your medical problems are, and how they limit you day-to-day.  If a potential lawyer or law firm does not show a willingness to listen to you, do not show a willingness to hire them.  There are others. The best Social Security lawyer should understand the course of your medical treatment.  The best Social Security lawyer for you will need to read all your relevant medical records.  The best Social Security lawyers cannot outsource this or hand part of it to underlings.  Why?  Your Social Security lawyer will need to compare what your medical complaints are with what your medical records show.  If there is any disconnect, your lawyer will need to argue why deficiencies in the medical record are not fatal to your Social Security claim.  This takes patience.  The best Social Security lawyers should be able to explain to you early on what your medical evidence must prove to get Social Security benefits.  If your lawyer or law firm is unable to unwilling to give you this important kind of legal advice right away, consider another firm before signing any papers. The best Social Security lawyer should get a treating medical opinion from the doctor who knows you best.  The best Social Security lawyers understand that Social Security must consider opinions about your medical limitations from your doctor.  Your medical records generally do not explain your limitations in a way that makes your disability clear.  Social Security must put numbers on you, such as how long you can walk in blocks and how many pounds you can lift and carry 2-hours a day.  The best Social Security lawyers ask your doctors these questions at the right time and in the right way.  If you want to hire Social Security representation, and you immediately get forms for your doctor shoved in your face, consider another firm before signing any papers. The best Social Security lawyer should know your judge professionally.  The best Social Security lawyers go to hearings about three or more times per week.  In this way, they get to know the Social Security judges in your area.  If you want the best Social Security lawyer, you want the Social Security judges to find them effective, efficient, and credible.  So, ask anyone you know about the reputation of the Social Security lawyers in the area where you will have your hearing.  You can also look online to see who has leadership positions on Social Security issues in the area bar association.  The best Social Security attorney and law firm you can hire is one that is well-respected by clients, judges, and your local Social Security hearing office.  A positive reputation matters.  Another note:  Google your Social Security lawyer.  Look past the ads.  Also look past the normal, disgruntled reviews.  Positive reviews may shed clear light on the best Social Security lawyer for you. The best Social Security lawyer should know how to skillfully cross-examine your hearing experts.  This takes smarts and experience.  Make sure you have called a law firm, not an “advocate” corporation.  Social Security lawyers are licensed by going to law school and taking a real bar exam.  They are trained and licensed to do a full court trial, which in some ways is what your hearing will be.  The best Social Security lawyers are in hearings every week and have years of Social Security experience under their belts.  The best cross-examiners should be able to explain what medical and vocational experts might say about your claim right now!  So before signing anything, ask, “What might ME’s [medical experts] and VE’s [vocational experts] say against my claim at my hearing?”  Listen carefully for a thoughtful answer.  If you can’t get answers, even general ones, move on before signing ANY paperwork. The best Social Security lawyer should know how the Social Security laws will apply to you.  This is as easy to understand as it is to check.  If a lawyer you’ve called is willing to handle your claim, ask why.  The best Social Security lawyers should be able to explain what regulations, listings, and rulings apply to your claim before they hire you.  If they can’t, move on.  No one should start a journey with eyes closed.  If your lawyer can explain how you will win, and what you will need to get there, you may have called the best Social Security lawyer for you. Andrew Kinney, Esq.

Author’s VIDEO: Top 5 Ways to be Approved for Social Security Benefits