Contact Us for a Free Consultation 714-548-3292


"Should I hire a lawyer?"

Posted by Michael Kalish | Feb 21, 2018 | 0 Comments

Today, I received a pretty common inquiry from a person who has filed an application for both SSI and SSDI disability benefits, Here is how I responded: To answer your question,  as with so much in life, there are both pro's and con's.  I will start with the pro's: personally, I always like to be involved as early in the process as possible to ensure that things go as smoothly as possible.  There are a lot of forms that Social Security will be asking you to complete and in a case such as yours where you are applying for both SSI and SSDI, sometimes they will duplicate their requests to you.  Also,  I always assume that it will be necessary to take the matter all the way to a hearing so by working the case up from the beginning, I can help to lay a strong evidentiary foundation to present to a judge.  Lastly,  statistically represented claimants are more likely to be awarded their benefits then non-represented claimants.  The cons are that if you retain an attorney to represent you and you are awarded benefits, then Social Security will pay the attorney a portion of any back-benefit amount you are entitled to as the lawyer's fee for representing you. Most attorneys, including myself, use a standard fee agreement in which the lawyer is paid the lesser amount of either $6000.00 or 25% of the total back-payment amount. For example, lets say that you are awarded $10,000 in back-benefits.  Social Security will deduct $2500 to pay the lawyer and pay you the balance of $7500 because $2500 is less than $6000. If, on the other hand, you were to be awarded $40,000 in back-benefits, than Social Security will deduct $6000 to pay the lawyer and pay you the balance of $34,000 because the attorney's fee is capped at $6000.00 even though 25% of $40,000 would be $10,000. The attorney's fee award will only be paid out of any back-benefit amount owed to you - it is never taken from cash payments going forward.  Sometimes, claimants like to see if their initial application is approved on their own to avoid having to pay a lawyer's fee and then retain an attorney if their initial application is denied.  Other folks prefer to retain an attorney from the "get-go" to walk them through the process.   I hope that helps to answer your question.  If you have further questions,  please feel free to contact me at your convenience.  Yours truly,  Mike Kalish 

About the Author

Michael Kalish

Disabled individuals need an attorney who understands their pain and financial need, who knows their name, and who can guide them through the complicated maze of obtaining Social Security disability benefits.


There are no comments for this post. Be the first and Add your Comment below.

Leave a Comment

Contact Me Today

The Law Offices of Michael Kalish is committed to answering your questions about claims for Social Security disability benefits.

I offer a Free Consultation and I will gladly discuss your case with you at your convenience. Contact me today to schedule an appointment.