what does a lawyer cost?

1 Answers. Asked on May 06th, 2012 on Social Security Disability - California
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Answered on May 13th, 2012 at 4:19 PM

I have good news!  Attorneys charge no "fees" until the case is over.  Some require an upfront deposit for expenses, but if you shop around, you may find someone that does not.  It greatly depends on where you live.

The Social Security Administration (SSA) closely regulates how the "fee" is paid.  According to the SSA website:

Prior to charging or collecting a fee from a claimant or a third party for services provided in any proceeding before the Social Security Administration (SSA), a representative generally must obtain SSA's authorization. To do so, the representative must use one of two mutually exclusive fee authorization processes:

Fee Agreement Process

Fee Petition Process


Typically, the fee is 25% (¼) of your past due benefits, and are usually withheld from your past due benefits to pay the lawyer directly.  The expenses are not withheld, and are to be paid, according to your agreement, directly to the lawyer.


Usually, an initial consultation, either by phone or in person, is free.  The website you used to ask this question is a good one.  Follow this link to find someone in your area that handles Social Security Disability.
Finally, insist on a written agreement when you hire the lawyer.  

PLEASE NOTE that an in person consultation is always best when you have a legal problem. DO NOT RELY on information for a legal remedy without having contacted a lawyer. Facts and circumstances of every case have to be applied to the law that is relevant for the state or location in question.


NEVER rest on a right or defense you may have. Legal rights are not like wine - they don't improve with age or time. Time limits can completely prohibit recovery. SEEK LEGAL ADVICE IMMEDIATELY.
Be sure to visit my website for answers to other Social Security Disability questions.

No attorney-client relationship has been established because of the information provided. Seek local counsel to address your particular facts. MJHJ

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Social Security Disability
If you're suffering from a disability that prevents you from working, you may be entitled to benefits under Social Security disability insurance (SSD or SSDI). Social Security disability attorneys can work with you to file your application for benefits. Because the Social Security Administration routinely denies the majority of initial claims, your SSD lawyers can also prepare for your hearing before an administrative law judge, attend all hearings, advocate on your behalf and file an appeal if your application has been denied. Hire an SSDI law firm as soon as you need to apply for SSDI. The faster your application is approved, the more quickly you will begin to receive benefits.
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