You can find plenty of disability attorneys by searching online, asking friends, or looking through a list at your local Bar Association. But here is how to know which attorney you can trust.
Looking for a Disability Lawyer
Before contacting a lawyer look for these signs of a reputable attorney. If you are searching online, this information should be easily available on the attorneys website. If you are finding attorneys through friends, ask them these questions before reaching out.
Experience: A reputable attorney should have lots of experience providing legal services, and specifically working cases with your disability. Look at how long they have been an attorney, and look through some of the cases they have worked on. Do they have experience with Social Security disability cases, Supplemental Security Income cases, veteran cases, etc.
Approval Rating: The internet is a great tool for crowdsourcing an attorney’s reputation. Look at the reviews previous clients have made about the attorney either on their professional website or on other platforms. High approval ratings are a good indicator that the attorney has a good reputation amongst clients.
Credentials: Lawyers and attorneys do not need formal credentials to be able to represent you in court. However, it is best to have an attorney who has studied law. Pay attention to which credentials an attorney has before deciding if you want them representing you. Some reliable credentials include a bachelor’s degree, or a Juris Doctor degree from an accredited university.
References: References are important indicators of how an attorney is viewed within their own community of professionals. Attorneys will either provide formal references, or they will share associations they belong to. Individual references are useful in understanding an attorneys politics or personal history. Looking into the associations an attorney is part of helps assure they are well-respected and well-known in their field.
Meeting with a Lawyer
Once you have decided on an attorney, you will need to contact them. When reaching out, here are some details to pay attention to in making sure they are reputable.
Accessibility: Attorneys can get very busy working on cases, so your initial contact might be through an assistant. You should be able to ask them most questions you need to know before working with an attorney. However, it is standard procedure to meet with your attorney at least once in person before working with them. You should definitely ask how accessible your attorney will be during the case itself, or if you will be mostly in contact with one of their assistants.
Promise of Outcomes: Be careful if an attorney only promises great outcomes. There are always possible risks involved. A responsible and reputable attorney will do their best to win the case, but they can not promise you the results. If they only highlight the positives, make sure they have a strong track record to back up their confidence.
Trust your Feelings: You should feel comfortable talking with your attorney. You should feel they will prioritize your case, and that you are not being judged in any way. Use the tips explained here. But most importantly, you must feel you can personally trust the lawyer.
Ask the Right Questions: Meeting your attorney for the first time is not the time to be shy! Ask a lot of questions. By asking questions will know exactly what kind of an attorney you’re working with. This will make it easier to trust them as well!
Some important topics to ask about include:
–documentation they will need
–documentation counseling they provide
–how long the process will take
This is also your chance to ask any other questions you may feel are important to you. It is better to ask beforehand than to be surprised later.