Social Security Disability FAQ

Written by Sheri R. Abrams, Attorney at Law

Continued from page 1

What may be most frustrating about applying for Social Security Disability benefits isrepparttar process itself. Those who apply are often made to feel like they are asking for something that they do not deserve, and nothing could be further fromrepparttar 119299 truth. Social Security Disability is not a welfare program; these benefits are paid for by you and were intended to act as a financial buffer in case you or a family member became seriously ill or injured. Therefore if you are unable to work, but you have been denied benefits, you should appeal.

DO I NEED AN ATTORNEY? You haverepparttar 119300 right to have an Attorney represent you in your Social Security Disability case. Statistics have shown that claimants represented by Attorneys have been much more successful than people without representation. You should seriously considerrepparttar 119301 advantages of having an Attorny represent you by examining what an Attorney would do in your Social Security Disability case.

WHAT WOULD MY ATTORNEY DO TO REPRESENT ME IN MY SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY CASE? Every case is different. Your Attorney's role depends onrepparttar 119302 particular facts of your case. However, a few ofrepparttar 119303 things an Attorney may do are: Gather medical and other evidence Analyze your case under Social Security Regulations Contact your doctor and explain Social Security Regulations to obtain a report consistent with those regulations Obtain documents from your Social Security Disability file Ask that a prior application for benefits be reopened Advise you how to best prepare yourself to testify at your hearing Protect your right to a fair hearing by objecting to improper evidence and procedures If you win, make sure thatrepparttar 119304 Social Security Administration correctly calculates your benefits If you lose, request review ofrepparttar 119305 hearing decision byrepparttar 119306 Social Security Administration's Appeals Council If necessary, represent you in a Federal Court review of your case

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO HIRE AN ATTORNEY? Most Attorneys who handle Social Security Disability cases will accept them on a contingent fee basis of 25% of past-due benefit or $5,300 whichever is less. That is, there is no fee if you lose, although you will be obligated to pay any out-of-pocket expenses incurred byrepparttar 119307 Attorny in your representation. Such expenses usually involve charges for photocopying and payments to doctors and hospitals for medical records and reports, and other miscellaneous charges. Total expenses usually are less than $100.

WHEN SHOULD I CONTACT AN ATTORNEY? As soon as possible, preferably as soon as your inital application is denied. An Attorney will then be able to start assisting you in determining if you are disabled, as that term is defined byrepparttar 119308 Social Security Act. You will then be able to decide whether or not you want to pursuerepparttar 119309 first appeal stage--Reconsideration; and your Attorney can begin developing ways to prove torepparttar 119310 Social Security Administration that you are disabled.

Attorneys in Social Security Disability cases do much more than sit in at a hearing and ask a few questions. Much pre-hearing preparation, analysis and evidence gathering go into adequate representation for your case. For this reason you should not wait until a week or two before your hearing to contact an Attorney. The earlier an Attorney is able to start working on your case,repparttar 119311 better your chances of winning.

Please note that not all Attorneys practice beforerepparttar 119312 Social Security Administration. You will do best to find an Attorney familiar withrepparttar 119313 complex Social Security Disability regulations andrepparttar 119314 somewhat unusual Social Security Disability procedures.

Sheri R. Abrams is an Attorney who practices Social Security Disability Law in Virginia, DC and Maryland. Ms. Abrams is a graduate of the George Washington University Law School and the Boston University School of Management.

Criminal Law Overview

Written by SWI Digital Staff

Continued from page 1

All statutes describing criminal behavior can be broken down into their various elements. Most crimes (withrepparttar exception of strict-liability crimes) consist of two elements: an act, or "actus reus," and a mental state, or "mens rea." Prosecutors have to prove each and every element ofrepparttar 119298 crime to yield a conviction. Furthermore,repparttar 119299 prosecutor must persuaderepparttar 119300 jury or judge "beyond a reasonable doubt" of every fact necessary to constituterepparttar 119301 crime charged. In civil cases,repparttar 119302 plaintiff needs to show a defendant is liable only by a "preponderance ofrepparttar 119303 evidence," or more than 50%.


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