Sunday, May 31, 2015

How Does Your Age Affect Your Social Security Disability Claim?

Each year more than 2.5 million disability applications are filed with the Social Security Administration. Of these applications, only 30 percent are approved at the initial stage of the application process. The remaining 70 percent must appeal the SSA's decision to deny benefits or give up hope of receiving benefits.

Many people wonder why applications are approved or denied and whether or not age plays any part in the SSA's decision as to whether or not they will award benefits. If you have considered applying for disability and wonder how your age will affect your disability claim, the following information will help you understand what role your age plays in your ability to qualify for disability benefits.

Age and Social Security Disability

Age is not always a determining factor when it comes to disability applications, but many times it does play a part in the SSA's decision on whether or not to award disability benefits. This is due to the medical and vocational guidelines that are set forth by the SSA.

When the Social Security office reviews a disability application, certain medical and vocational guidelines must be followed when deciding whether or not to approve a claim. There are guidelines set forth that pertain to one's age, but that does not mean your age will automatically disqualify you from receiving disability benefits.

When the SSA reviews your disability application, they must determine whether or not you are able to participate in gainful employment. Even if you have suffered a disability that prevents you from performing your usual job functions, your age may play a part in determining whether or not you can perform other types of work.

Let's say, for example, that you have no experience other than construction work. If you suffer a back injury and are unable to perform your usual line of work you may want to apply for disability benefits. Even if your condition falls under Social Security's Impairment Listings, this does not mean you will automatically qualify for benefits. Your age may also play a part in the decision.

Using the above example, if you are over the age of 50 your chances of being approved for disability benefits would be much greater than if you were in your twenties or thirties. This is because it would be much harder for you to enter into a new line of work. If you are younger, the SSA would expect you to obtain the necessary work skills to perform other types of employment. On the other hand, if your disability prevents you from performing any type of work whatsoever, you would likely be approved for disability benefits regardless of your age.

Determining the Role Your Age will Play

If you are applying for disability benefits, it can be helpful to understand how the SSA views the different age groups and work categories. If you are younger than 44 years of age, the SSA will view you as a young individual. Those who are between the ages of 44 to 49 are considered younger individuals and those between the ages of 49 to 55 are considered to be advancing in age. If you are over the age of 55 when you apply for Social Security Disability benefits, the SSA will consider you advanced in age.

Along with determining your age, the SSA will also determine what types of work you can perform. There are four categories into which Social Security groups functional capacities including sedentary work, light work, medium work and heavy-weight work. No matter how young you are, if you are unable to perform even the sedentary level of work due to your disability, you will likely be approved for disability benefits.

What to Do If Your Claim Is Denied

If you apply for Social Security Disability and your claim is denied, it is in your best interest to file an appeal with the Social Security Administration within 60 days of receiving the decision notice. If you feel that your age has played a part in your denied Social Security Disability application and that the Social Security Administration did not fairly take into consideration your inability to perform any type of work whatsoever, you should retain the services of a Social Security Disability attorney. Your attorney can increase your chances of a successful Social Security Disability claim and will ensure that all aspects of your disability are taken into account during the Social Security Disability appeal process.
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Thursday, May 28, 2015

Steps to Take When Choosing Divorce Lawyers

The practice of family law includes representing parties navigating the process of divorce. When you are dissolving your marriage, you may need to explore various attorneys to find one that you wish to represent you. Divorce lawyers are experts in this field, which enables them to help their clients during this difficult time.

Set Realistic Goals

Breaking off a marriage is often a messy process. Custody issues and the division of assets typically result in high stress and volatile emotions for both parties. To proceed successfully, you will need to know what you want to have on the other side of the divorce. Some goals may not be possible, necessitating that you adjust your expectations accordingly. For example, you may want to continue living in your house, but the asset division necessary may not make keeping the house possible. Once you set realistic goals, focus on them throughout the process.

Explore Your Options

Divorce lawyers are an integral part of this process for many proceedings, especially the ones that involve traditional litigation to disentangle assets and resolve child custody. However, if you have simple issues, you may not even need an attorney to represent you. In these cases, you might be able to hire a mediator instead of an attorney to save money. For situations with complicated settlement issues, you will need to explore legal representation to ensure that you have a litigator in your corner.

Initial Contact

Find at least three attorneys practicing local family law and evaluate the pros and cons. This professional will need negotiation experience, solid knowledge of the system, exceptional communication skills, and creative problem-solving abilities. You might find these initial names on the Internet, through personal recommendations, or in the phone book.

Research Tips

Speak with the divorce lawyers in an initial phone conversation. Ask questions about personal experience and any specialization within the practice of family law. Find out about typical clients the professionals represent, fees and retainers, free consultations, and the typical way each lawyer handles a case. Some attorneys handle most of their own day-to-day consultations, and others hand off these tasks to support staff. Ask about the other experts on staff who might also be assisting you, such as forensic appraisers, financial experts, and mediation coordinators. Examine each lawyer's trial record to learn about this history. If possible, make an appointment with each person you are considering to receive a consultation and recommendations for the case.

Final Selection

During a consultation appointment, you will have an opportunity to share details of your case. Divorce lawyers should be able to take this information and provide you with guidance about the process. The consultation will give you an idea of how compatible your personality is with the attorney's and whether you feel comfortable with this professional. When it comes to divorce, your comfort is essential, as the legal proceedings can involve extreme emotions.

Make your final selection based on professional style, affordability, and the responsive nature of the lawyer.

When looking for divorce lawyers in Stroudsburg, PA, residents consult Kash & Fedrigon Attorneys at Law. Learn more at
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Monday, May 25, 2015

Know Your Rights! Know When To Hire a Social Security Disability Attorney

Social security disability benefit provides disability payments on a monthly basis to those who are unable to engage in employment activities due to physical or mental issues. Have a social security disability attorney represent you for successfully winning the case especially when you are denied these benefits. However, for you to enjoy these benefits; there is a strict qualifying process that you need to pass. There are certain aspects a claimant must prove to the social security administration and this article throws lights on these pointers.

Qualifying process

In order to qualify for social security benefits, the claimant must prove to the administration that he or she is disabled as per the rules laid down by social security administration. Disability could be physical or mental and the claimant should not be able to gain from substantial employment activity. However, small amount of earnings from work can still qualify. A lot of time pin pointing the disability is somewhat skewed because on average 70 percent of applications are denied the first time. However, with the representation of an experienced social security disability attorney, you can convert denials into accepted claims either by reconsideration or through a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge.

Another point to consider is that the claimant should be fully insured for social security benefits. You should have worked to earn 20 calendar quarters of coverage from 40 calendar quarters before you became disabled. This means if you have worked 5 out of 10 years before becoming disabled, you become eligible. If you fall below 30 years of age, you qualify with fewer quarters of coverage. When these eligibility criteria are met, you must finally prove that you are disabled. Benefits are available if you have total disability; If you are partial disabled it will not qualify. You have to be unable to find employment because of medically determined mental or physical impairment. This condition should have or continue to last for at least twelve months.

Legal representation by a social security disability attorney in proving facts

Due to specific significant aspects, you might consider having a social security disability attorney represent you. An attorney helps to gather the right material that is favorable to you in a court of law. It's important to define what qualifies as substantial gainful activity (amount of earning change every year, 2009 saw this threshold amount to be $980 per month), severity of impairments (medical proof of severity of the disability must be produced), listings of impairments (your disability should meet one of the set of impairments as published in the regulations), past relevant work (incapability to do any work you did in the past), other work (incapability to do any other work as well).

Strict guidelines are mentioned in grids that are social security circles. When work capacity, past relevant work, education and your age fit into one of the grids, the legal system determines if you are considered to be disabled or not. However, this is only an indicative framework and if you have other proof to produce, you can do so with the help of a social security disability attorney who can effectively represent you and win the case successfully.

Make an educated decision when looking for the right ssd attorney.

It's wise to know what you need to qualify, what to do if you've been denied a claim, and things to be careful of when filing. will break down each medical condition in an easy to understand way, and will help you win your claim!
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Friday, May 22, 2015

Get a Workers Compensation Lawyer on Your Side

Workers compensation is an insurance program required by a state to reimburse workers for medical costs and loss of wages that may occur if they are injured on the job. Under the law, employers must carry a workers compensation insurance policy that provides benefits to workers who become disabled due to illness or an accident sustained in the course of performing their job. Unfortunately, as is the case in most states, these laws can be complex and often times confusing. This is where a lawyer can help. An attorney should be contacted as soon as possible after you are injured.

For example, the law requires that a sick or injured worker notify their employer of an injury within a specified period after an accident or an injury has occurred. Since you could be in the hospital during the notification period, it may be difficult to notify the proper employer personnel within the allotted time. If notification is not made on time, benefits can be denied. Your attorney work with you at this critical time ensure that you properly show that were injured performing your job, that proper notification is made and documents are collected for submittal to the insurance carrier. Similarly, if you are an independent contractor, a workers compensation attorney can help you determine your legal eligibility for compensation under the law.

Once the employer has been properly notified, the employer notifies the proper state departments and also the workmans compensation insurance carrier. While benefits should start at this time, for a variety of reasons, the compensation carrier may reject the worker's claim. In such cases, again, it is in your best interest to contact a lawyer. They are experts in the field of workers compensation and will represent you before the state entities and the insurance company to ensure that you receive the compensation to which you are legally entitled.

In another area, depending on your situation, you may be eligible for social security disability benefits while also receiving workers compensation. Your attorney and his/her associates can help you determine if you are also eligible to receive both benefits, and if so, provide the service you need to efficiently claim both benefits. Since these two disability programs are not related, navigating through both of them requires an attorney or law firm with expertise in both programs. It is vital that you choose a firm or an attorney that specializes in both programs to be sure that you have comprehensive representation.

Workers compensation is a complex area of the law and multiple benefit programs can be applied depending upon your situation. Should you become injured on the job, lawyers are there to be your advocate and help you obtain the benefits you legally deserve.

The Philadelphia workers compensation lawyers at Oxenburg & Franzel have been successfully representing injured workers since 1978. Whether you are looking for a Philadelphia workers compensation attorney to help you from the beginning of your claim or just a consultation, your attorney can explain the PA workers compensation laws in a way so that you can be confident in filing your claim. Contact the Philadelphia workers compensation lawyers at Oxenburg & Franzel and put them on your side.
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Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Solano County Bar Association Recognizes Young Attorney

Amber R. Hayes, an attorney with Hodson & Mullin in Vacaville, was recently named Young Attorney of the Year by the Solano County Bar Association. Hayes, a native of Napa, specializes in family law, but also sits on two state boards, one being the Family Law Executive Committee, which assists the state bar in working with the legislature to develop family law legislation. Ryan Chalk -- The Reporter

A short time after entering the legal profession as a second career, a local attorney has been recognized by her peers for her contributions to the legal community.

Amber R. Hayes was recently named the Solano County Bar Association’s Young Attorney of the Year during their annual installation dinner in January. The state bar recognizes a young lawyer as a member who is in his or her first five years of practice in California or who is age 36 or under.

Hayes, a Napa native, is an attorney with the Vacaville law firm Hodson & Mullin and specializes in family law.

It was her first career as a juvenile probation officer in Napa County that helped steer her in the direction of becoming a lawyer. It was in Napa County that she was assigned to the juvenile probation office’s court unit.

“I knew I wanted to go to law school when I became a probation officer,” Hayes said.

Already holding a degree in psychology from University of California, Santa Cruz, Hayes decided to enroll at Hamline University School of Law in St. Paul, Minn., where the draw was to be involved with legislative work.

However, upon graduation, Hayes eventually followed a path to family law, an area of law that is often challenging.

“I enjoy the complexity. I enjoy that it really requires a higher level of analysis than some fields require,” Hayes said.

However, Hayes still gets involved with the legislative side of things, as she sits on two state Bar Association boards, notably the Family Law Section and its Executive Committee (FLEXCOM), which, among its duties are assisting the State Bar in working with the legislature to develop family law legislation.

According to Hayes, receiving the Solano County Bar Association recognition, came as a surprise.

“It was a shock, honestly. I’m still a little floored,” she said.

However, Hayes is quick to point out the great work being done by other young attorneys in the area.

“A young attorney brings a fresh perspective to a practice,” she said.

Bernadette Curry, president of the Solano County Bar Association, remembers the first time she met Hayes and quickly became impressed with her work with the California Young Lawyers Association in seeking to facilitate mentoring opportunities for other young attorneys.

“She’s excited and is really trying to create opportunities for young attorneys to grow,” Curry said.

“When you have that type of energy you want to recognize it,” she added.

The Solano County Bar Association also recognizes a law firm of the year and attorney of the year.
Julie Hilt, executive director, said that Young Attorney of the Year is someone who goes above and beyond to raise the bar on standards for the legal profession.

“I’ve always been impressed with her enthusiasm,” Hilt said.

“She gets involved to make a difference,” she added.

Article Source: The Reporter 

Saturday, May 16, 2015

How Does the Social Security Administration Approve a Social Security Disability Claim?

The Social Security Disability application process can be confusing, stressful, overwhelming and lengthy. It is often hard for disability applicants to navigate their own responsibilities regarding their disability claim, let alone try to understand how the SSA will decide whether they will approve or deny their claim for benefits. If you are applying for disability benefits and want to understand how the SSA reviews and approves claims for disability benefits, the following information can help.

What Does the Social Security Administration Look For in a Disability Claim?

There are a few things the SSA looks for when an applicant files a claim for disability benefits. If you are applying for Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), the SSA will determine whether or not you have enough work credits to qualify for disability payments. If you are filing for Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the SSA will check to see if your household income falls below the set limits.

Meeting the SSA's Disability Guidelines

If all of the other criteria set forth by the SSA are met (e.g., work credits or income requirements), the SSA will then need to determine whether or not you are disabled, the severity of your disability and whether your disability meets their specific guidelines. This is why it is crucial that you provide as much medical documentation as you can with your initial disability application.

When reviewing claims for disability benefits, the examiner reviewing your claim will refer to a published listing of impairments known as the Social Security "Blue Book." This Blue Book lists all of the disabling conditions that could qualify an individual for Social Security Disability benefits. The Blue Book also contains guidelines for each listed condition and applicants must meet the guidelines set forth in the section that pertains to their specific disability in order to be approved for benefits. For example, if you are suffering from a traumatic brain injury, that condition is indeed listed in the Social Security Blue Book. However, a diagnosis of a traumatic brain injury in and of itself will not qualify you for benefits. The Blue Book lists symptoms from which an applicant must suffer in order to qualify under this section of the publication. If you have a traumatic brain injury that does not meet the published guidelines, you will not qualify for disability benefits.

If your condition is not included in the SSA's Blue Book, you may still qualify for benefits but will need to prove that your disability prevents you from performing any type of work-related activity. In order to prove your disability and the severity of your condition to the SSA, you will need to provide as much medical documentation as possible. Make sure you include all medical records and the names and addresses of all of your doctors when submitting your application for benefits. If you have had hospital stays, emergency room visits or trips to an urgent care center because of your disability, make sure the SSA is provided with information about each and every encounter. You can never provide too much information when filing a disability claim. Provide as much documentation as possible to help the SSA approve your disability application.

When reviewing your claim for disability benefits, the SSA will also look at your work history and your age. It is sometimes easier for those who are more advanced in age to qualify for disability benefits than it is for a younger person. For example, if a fifty-year-old man who has always worked in construction suffers a back injury and is unable to perform work because of the injury, he is more likely to be approved for benefits than a twenty-five-year-old male who suffered the same injury and had the same occupation. This is because the twenty-five-year-old could, if necessary, change to a different career path and perform a different type of work, whereas it would be nearly impossible for the fifty-year-old male to make a career change so late in his life.

What to Do if Your Application for Benefits is Denied

If your initial application for disability benefits is denied, do not be alarmed. The fact of the matter is that nearly 70 percent of disability applications are not approved at the initial stage of the application process. If your application is among those that are denied, it does not mean that you can't receive the disability benefits you need. It only means that you will need to go on to appeal the SSA's decision to deny your benefits.

If you have received notice from the SSA that your claim for benefits has been denied, contact a Social Security Disability attorney. Your chances of successfully appealing the SSA's decision to deny your disability benefits are statistically higher with proper legal representation.
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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

When To Hire A Family Law Attorney

Family is what binds us, by heredity and by love. Sometimes families break up; sometimes families just need something in writing to ensure that their loved ones are protected. And, with the family structure constantly evolving, more and more people are seeking legal protection and advice to empower their lives. Family law is a diverse set of laws that work with many of the issues that families are now dealing with. The law covers issues dealing with marriage, custody, wills and estates, and domestic violence. Here are a few situations that require a family law attorney.


Prenuptial and postnuptial agreements are terms set out by both parties prior to marriage detailing what each person has and can leave with should the marriage end. Reconciliation is a part of family law that seeks to help both parties find common ground on making the marriage better. If reconciliation does not work, many couples file for divorce. In most states, there are grounds for which divorce will be granted, including adultery, imprisonment, domestic violence, and irreconcilable differences. Many laws also deal with civil unions between same-sex couples as well as couples who may not want a traditional marriage.


Custody issues generally necessitate an attorney. There are usually two types of custody: joint and sole. Joint custody is when both parents share equal time with the child. Sole custody is custody granted to one parent. In some cases, though, the custodial parent needs permission from the non-custodial parent and the court to do things like move to another state. Custody also includes children in the foster care system, as well as guardianship. The court helps to decide what is best for the child based on certain criteria.

Wills and Estates

A will is a legal document created by an individual to state his or her wishes in regards to property and/or other assets. To ensure that your wishes will be upheld after your death, it is important to seek the advice of a legal representative when drafting your will. There are three types of wills: last will and testament, living trust, and living will. A last will grants last wishes to beneficiaries, including property, last wishes of the individual, and guardianship of minor children. Not having a last will means that the court can make decisions on your behalf. A living trust transfers property to beneficiaries. Unlike a last will, a probate court does not have to acknowledge it. It can be dragged out in court for years, costing you high attorney and court fees. A living will deals with health-related issues, including life support and power of attorney over health care decisions.

Domestic Violence

Domestic violence negatively affects everyone. Abuse is never okay. Domestic violence laws are in place to protect women and men, young and old, regardless of socioeconomic status. They also protect those who are falsely accused of domestic violence. Family lawyers help access restraining orders, secure residence, and defend the wrongly accused.

Legal issues, even seemingly easy ones, can be scary. Protecting yourself and your family is very important. It is important to pick an attorney that is reputable, empathetic, and can guide you through the legal system.

To learn more about family law, Hudson County, NJ residents should visit
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Sunday, May 10, 2015

The Workers Compensation Lawyer - A Brief History

Workers compensation attorneys as we know them today did not exist more than 100 years ago. The history of workman's compensation goes back thousands of years, to the time of Hammurabi and his Code. But the rise of the workman's compensation lawyer did not come about until the development of a common law in the late Middle Ages.

This common law created a legal framework that set the stage for workers' compensation attorneys to enter the scene during the Industrial Revolution.

At the onset of the Industrial Revolution, worker's compensation attorneys were not known by that name. In general, they were grouped together with all other lawyers, be they a workman's compensation lawyer specifically or not. Strict principals governed workmen's compensation attorneys during the Industrial Revolution and made it difficult for workers to file complaints or receive compensation, even with the help of their workers compensation lawyer.

Compensation for injuries or sickness was not awarded if there was contributory negligence, injuries caused by fellow workers, or if the injured worker has the assumption of risk when accepting the job in the first place. These restrictions made it extremely difficult for workman's compensation lawyers to even file, let alone win a case.

The extremely high costs of pursing a workman's compensation case left most common workers with no recourse but to pay for their injuries and try to find a safer job less likely to put them in harm's way.

To help combat the exorbitant costs of a case, societies were formed to assist the more affluent workers by providing them with workers compensation attorneys who could help purchase a variety of different kinds of liability insurance. Such protection was minimal, but was better than nothing. On the rare occasion a workers' compensation lawyer prevailed in court and won his client compensation, it was considered a great stride forward for all workers compensation attorneys.

Near the end of the 19th century workman's' compensation began to become more popular through the adoption of worker compensation laws in Europe. Workers were now able to hire an attorney who specialized in that area of law, and file and appeal cases through the government for redress. It is important to note that while workman's' compensation attorneys could file a suit with the government, a lawyer was prohibited from filing a workers compensation suit in civil court, as the government court was considered the only valid court for workers comp cases. This helped secure employers against false claims and fraud.

Workers compensation did not begin to become popular in the United States until after the turn of the 19th century. Taking their cue from Europe, American workman's compensation lawyers worked hard to implement a system to help protect workers on the job. By the early 19th century several states had adopted comprehensive workman's compensation laws.

Within the next one hundred years, workers compensation attorneys all across the country worked diligently to provide their services for the hundreds of thousands of workers in the labor markets, and in the process brought workers' compensation attorneys to the forefront of the legal world.

The experienced Philadelphia workers compensation attorneys at Oxenburg & Franzel will work to get you the compensation you deserve. Get to know your Philadelphia workers compensation lawyer, and learn how Oxenburg & Franzel can help you win your case.
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Thursday, May 7, 2015

What Is the Difference Between Social Security Disability Benefits and VA Disability Benefits?

Many of the individuals who receive VA disability benefits assume that they will also be eligible for Social Security Disability benefits. When these applicants go on to apply for disability benefits from the Social Security Administration (SSA), some are surprised to find out that their application for disability has been denied by the agency. Why is it that some people are eligible for VA benefits but not for disability from the SSA? To understand the answer to that question you must understand the differences between the two programs and how the regulating agencies determine whether or not an individual is disabled according to their guidelines.

The Determination Process

When an individual applies for VA disability benefits, he/she must prove that he/she is a military veteran who has not received a dishonorable discharge and that the injuries that caused his/her disability is related to his/her service in the military. The VA's two-step process qualification process is much less stringent than the SS Disability application process, which often makes it easier for applicants to qualify for VA benefits. Individuals who are applying for benefits from the SSA must go through a five-step qualification process, proving that they are unable to earn more than $1,000 per month, that their medical condition prevents them from performing gainful work activity, that the disability falls under the published SSA impairment listings (or that it is equal to one of the listed conditions) and that the specific condition results in a residual functional impairment, which prevents the applicant from performing any type of work in the national economy.

Since it is often harder to qualify for Social Security benefits than it is to qualify for VA benefits, it is not uncommon for individuals who are receiving VA disability to be denied disability payments from the SSA. On the other hand, veterans who do not qualify for VA benefits may be able to qualify for disability payments from the SSA in some situations. For example, if the disability that a person is suffering from did not occur as a result of service-related activities, but falls under the Social Security impairment guidelines, that veteran may indeed be able to qualify for Social Security Disability benefits if the extent of their disability can be proven, even though they can not qualify for VA benefits due to the nature of the disability.

The Ability to Work

Another distinct difference between VA disability benefits and Social Security Disability benefits is that individuals cannot qualify for Social Security Disability benefits if they are able to perform any type of work activity. If the individual is able to work, they will not be awarded disability benefits from the SSA. VA benefits work differently. The ability to work does not prevent an individual from being able to receive VA disability benefits. A VA disability beneficiary can maintain their benefits even if they are able to perform work and earn an income, although individuals who are not able to work are eligible for additional compensation under the VA disability program.

Benefit Amounts

In addition to distinct differences in how the VA and the SSA determine a disability, there is also a significant difference in the amount of benefits paid to the individuals who are eligible for benefits under these programs. VA disability benefits tend to provide more financial assistance than Social Security Disability benefits. The average VA disability benefit payment is approximately $2,700 per month while the average SSA disability payment is only about $1,100 per month.

Qualifying for Both

There is nothing preventing an individual who qualifies for VA disability from receiving Social Security Disability. If you have earned enough work credits to qualify for Social Security Disability payments and you meet the disability guidelines set forth by the SSA you could technically receive both VA disability benefits and Social Security Disability payments. Participation in one program does not prevent you from receiving benefits from the other.

Appealing a Denied Application

If you are receiving VA disability benefits and feel that you are entitled to Social Security Disability payments as well, you need to apply for disability through the SSA. If your initial application for benefits is denied, you will need to go on to file an appeal. Nearly 70 percent of applications are denied at the initial stage of the application process so it is not uncommon for an applicant to have to go through the appeal process.

If you need help applying for or appealing Social Security Disability you should consider retaining the services of a qualified attorney. Hiring a qualified attorney can help increase your chances of receiving a favorable decision during the disability appeal process.
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Monday, May 4, 2015

Getting a Divorce? What to Look for in a Family Law Attorney

Going through a divorce is not something that anyone finds easy. By choosing the right lawyer, the process can be made easier. Finding the right attorney is critical to the outcome of the divorce and it is more than worth the time it takes to do it right.

What do you want?

What is it exactly that you want to accomplish? Are you going to have an uncontested divorce and if not, will there be the possibility of mediation? Has the relationship gone so far south that all you need is a true gladiator who can go and handle the bloody battle that is inherent in the divorce proceedings?

Are your affairs simple enough for any attorney with a basic understanding of the law and equipped with decent people skills can handle or do you happen to have property holdings that are complex enough to call for a lawyer with a financial and tax related awareness who can assist you in designing a plan that will get you the most after tax money? If you know what type of legal services that you are in need of then it will make shopping for an attorney more effective.

Once you have made a list of prospective attorneys, use these guidelines to screen them initially and narrow the list to only a few candidates.

  • Look at their biographical information. This can be found on their web sites. They should have experience in family law in the particular area that you need.
  • Google it. Search both the name of the firm that the attorney represents and the attorney him (her) self. Are there any FAQs, articles or anything else related to this particular attorney that offers you a measure of comfort?
  • Ask people. Ask about the specific attorneys that you are considering. Ask if they have ever heard of them and if they are familiar with any work they have done.
  • Contact the bar association in your state. Find out of the attorney(s) has a good record. This can also be done on the bar association's web site.
  • Yes, this is old school - check out the yellow pages in the phone book. Is the particular attorney you are investigating advertising there? If they are, is the advertisement tasteful, helpful or compelling?

Many times an attorney will spend a lot of time in court, which means that when you call you will be talking to someone else. What is the overall impression you get from this person? Are they well informed, pleasant, able to get you what you need? If not, this might be indicative of the type of service provided by the attorney too.

Use your gut instinct and your common sense to evaluate the attorneys who have made it this far. You will need to be comfortable with the attorney that you ultimately hire. You need to choose the attorney who you think can get you the best results. So, what are you waiting for? Get to researching!

Kathryn McDowell recommends you contact a family law attorney to protect your rights and help set up an amicable divorce settlement.
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Friday, May 1, 2015

How to Find a Good Family Law Attorney

When you need a lawyer you need to take your time and find one that will be able to handle the type of case you have. Not all lawyers practice family law, and not all lawyers will represent all types of family law cases.

When you need a lawyer to help you with a matter of family law you are more than likely going to be emotionally stressed by the situation you are in. Do not allow your emotions to cloud your judgment. Research the law firms in your area and consider your options carefully.

1. Ask friends and family to make referrals

You more than likely have at least one family member, or one friend that has had a reason in the past to hire a family law attorney. You trust your family and friends, and they will be honest with you about the divorce attorney, their fees, their office practices, and the way they treat their clients. This may be the most important information that you gather during your attorney search.

2. Look in the local phone directories

The lawyers in your area will be listed in your local phone book. Many of them will have full page advertisements that explain the type of law they practice. The information in these advertisements will be generic, but you can find out the physical address of their offices, and the type of law they practice, and their web address may also be listed. You need to find an attorney that is within an easy travel distance from your home or office.

3. Go to their websites

A divorce attorney will more than likely have a website that their potential clients can visit. The website should have information concerning the credentials of the lawyer, their experience as a family law attorney, their office location, their office hours, and other critical information. They may even have some articles on their site that could give you helpful hints on what you are going through.

4. Read news stories and press releases

Look up the local newspapers from the county that you are going to go to court in and look for articles concerning the lawyer you are considering. You want a lawyer that has had more positive stories printed about them than negative stories. You may also be able to determine the success rate the attorney has had in the past by the news articles you find written about them.

5. Look at social media sites they are on

Check out sites like Twitter, and Facebook, and see if the attorney has an active account. You can often gain valuable insight about a person from what they are willing to post on social networking sites. You will also gain access to comments from former clients, and possibly get a better understanding of the lawyer, and how they treat their clients.

6. Look at online reviews

You can find reviews of a divorce attorney at sites like Avvo,, and Findlaw that can help you to determine which family law attorney to choose.

A family law attorney handles delicate situations concerning divorce, child custody, and other personal matters. You want the divorce attorney that you hire to be experienced, and licensed to practice in the state you reside in. You can get more information from family law attorney Orange County and divorce attorney Orange County.
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