Published on: October 8, 2015
Disability Experts of Florida is staffed solely by non-attorney advocates and we pride ourselves on initiating cases and working on them zealously to provide the claimant with the best possible chance of being awarded benefits as expeditiously as possible.
We’re also proud to help those who have been turned down for SSDI or SSI in the past. If you choose to go with a Social Security disability attorney, there’s a good chance you won’t get the one-on-one attention you will receive at DEF.
What We Do: an Outline
If your first disability claim was denied, our advocates file an appeal called a Reconsideration. In comparison to many large Social Security disability attorney and law groups, DEF takes a different approach. We closely review past medical tests and assessments and update those with new medical information, along with other tests and or forms that we use to get a favorable result for our clients. We then diligently contact groups of doctors and speak directly with them with the goal of getting your claim approved. We can also help find reputable doctors who handle disability prospects.
Did you know that many Social Security disability attorneys won’t even bother filing your initial claim? It’s true. It’s often the case that a Social Security disability attorney will only handle reconsiderations and and hearings before Administrative Law Judges. That's where having former Social Security employees on staff can be of great benefit to applicants.
The hearing is the 3rd stage of case; it is filed if your initial application and Request For Reconsideration are denied. Don’t stress out. It isn’t that unusual. Remember, that the SSA is operating under increased scrutiny these days. DEF files the hearing request on your behalf and sends for updated medical information – we handle ALL OF YOUR PAPERWORK SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO - which we then submit to the Hearings office. If we feel your disability meets the criteria that allows for an early favorable decision, we will seek a favorable decision before your case gets assigned to a Judge. This isn’t always the case with lawyers. This could potentially save you 7 to 12 months of waiting and worrying while your condition worsens from the stress of dealing with bureaucracy. Not every disability meets the criteria for this type of decision, and it is sometimes necessary for the judge to actually meet with and speak to you and your advocate with regard to your specific disability claim.
Filing on Your Own
It’s a bit risky and confusing to file a disability claim on your own, especially after an initial denial. If you file the hearing request on your own, this means that both your initial application as well as your reconsideration application was denied. While it’s true that many Social Security disability attorneys are very good with helping their clients during this frustrating stage of the process, our Social Security advocates always work closely with you, start to finish, to help ensure you get the outcome you need.
When your hearing date is assigned, if you don't have representation, it is possible that the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) will advise you to obtain advocacy from either a Social Security non attorney representative or a Social Security disability attorney. The ALJ will then postpone your hearing date.
If you choose a disability attorney (especially from a large firm), you may never get to meet him or her until the actual date of your new hearing – this is not to your advantage! The paperwork that you need to sign is mailed to you with a return envelope – it’s a cold, disconnected approach and we feel it’s a poor way to do things. If you are seeking SSD and/or SSI, your disability is a crucible, a vital crossroads in your life, and you need support. At the hearing, you'll have no idea who your disability attorney is until he or she calls your name. Our non-attorney Social Security advocates are there for you every step of the way, unlike some of the larger private disability law firms.
DEF: Personal, Caring Attention when You Need it Most
We want to meet you and get to know you long before your hearing, should you need to have one. We listen intently to your story, handle all the paperwork, and proceed from there. By the time your new hearing is assigned, we'll know your case inside and out, and you'll also know us.