Need to Hire a Long-Term Disability Lawyer? 4 Questions to Ask

If you have been injured and it doesn't look like you will go back to work anytime soon, you will need to hire a long-term disability lawyer. A long-term disability lawyer can help you with the detailed process of applying for disability benefits.

Question #1: Professional Experience

First, you are going to want to ask if the attorney has experience in long-term disability insurance. Find out what percentage of their practice is focused on long-term disability cases. The paperwork required for both short and long-term disability claims is very complicated.

You want to make sure you are working with an attorney who understands the ins and outs of the particular type of situation you find yourself in. Find out how long the attorney has been working on long-term disability claims and how much of their practice is dedicated to this area of law. If this is just something they occasionally do, try to find someone with more experience.

Question #2: Settlement Versus Court Cases

Second, you will want to find out what percentage of disability insurance claims they can settle before going to court. Going to court can drag your case out and require you to wait longer to get the money you need. Going all the way to court should be a last-ditch option.

Instead, look for an attorney who has a high settlement rate before taking them to court. That means they have a high rate of taking care of their clients first, which you need when you are waiting on the money from your case to help support yourself.

Question #3: Fee System Arrangement

Third, it is essential to ask about how your attorney will get paid. There are a variety of different fee arrangements that an attorney could use. Some attorneys will collect all their fees from your settlement. Others may ask for you to make payments as they work on your case.

Or they may ask you to pay for legal filing fees related to your case. Find out what an attorney's fee structure is, and make sure that you can afford that fee structure. If you decide to work with an attorney, always get the fee structure explained in writing.

Question #4: Approach to Paperwork

Finally, you want to find out what the attorney's approach to paperwork is. You want to work with an attorney who will handle the primary burden of gathering all the paperwork for your disability filing. You may want to look for an attorney with an administrative assistant or legal assistant who will help them get all the paperwork done.

When it comes to hiring a disability attorney, you will want to look for one with professional disability insurance experience, who has a handle on paperwork, has a detailed fee schedule, and focuses on settlements, not court cases.