How Social Security Appeals Attorneys Can Help

Often, claims are disapproved because the information provided is incomplete or improperly presented.  It takes an attorney who is familiar not only with the intricacies of the Social Security disability insurance system, but also understands the complex medical issues that arise during treatment and how those issues affect a person’s capacity to work.  Because there are also issues that cross over into the Workers’ Compensation arena, it can be beneficial to have an attorney with knowledge and experience in both areas of law.

Once a social security appeals lawyer is appointed, he or she will:

  • Obtain information from Social Security.
  • Obtain medical records or information to help support a claim.
  • Represent a claimant in any interview, conference or hearing with the Social Security Administration (SSA).
  • Request a reconsideration, hearing or Appeals Council review.
  • Prepare a claimant for a hearing and question witnesses.

Clients of Gordon, Edelstein, Krepack, Grant, Felton & Goldstein, LLP personally meet with the attorney who will be handling their appeal at all levels.   The attorney is available to explain the appeals process, answer questions and prepare for interviews, conferences and hearings before the Social Security Administration.

What a Social Security Appeals Attorney Can Charge for Services

An attorney cannot charge or collect a fee without the SSA’s authorization.  To charge a fee for services, a written fee agreement must be filed with the SSA.  Generally, if there are past-due benefits owed, and the fee agreed on is no more than 25 percent of the past due benefits, to a maximum of $6,000, whichever is less, the SSA will approve the fee agreement.

The attorney may also file a fee petition after completing work.  This is a written request that describes in detail the amount of time spent on each service.  The amount of the fee the attorney may charge is determined by the SSA.  However, out-of-pocket expenses, such as cost to obtain medical reports, do not require prior approval.
Generally, the SSA will withhold 25 percent of past-due benefits and pay the attorney directly. Sometimes a person must pay his or her attorney directly if:

  • The approved fee is more than the amount withheld and paid to the attorney by the SSA;
  • The attorney is not eligible for direct payment;
  • The SSA did not withhold 25 percent from past-due benefits, or
  • The attorney made a timely request for a fee and the money that should have been withheld was sent to the claimant.


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