Most everyone has seen the advertisements that encourage Social Security applicants to take advantage of having professional legal services free of charge. That may seem like a scam or a tease to some, but in some instances, you may actually get a Social Security attorney to work on your case without having to pay any upfront legal fees. How is this possible? Read on to learn more about this benefit.
Help Just When You Need It
Not everyone gets their Social Security application for benefits approved right away. The time between your medical condition starting and the final approval can take months and sometimes years. For those unable to work and earn a living, it may seem unimaginable that you could afford to hire an attorney to help you get your claim approved. The Social Security Administration (SSA) understands that the long and complicated nature of the approval process can be taxing on applicants, so they have agreements with attorneys that allow them to work together for your benefit.
The Funds to Pay
Attorneys need to earn a living as well, and all those years of law school should account for something, so you can rest assured that they are not representing you entirely free of charge, nor are the taxpayers footing their bills. Instead, Social Security attorneys are paid a percentage of an applicant's back pay.
Since the application process is so lengthy, several months may have elapsed between the time you become unable to work and the time your application finally gets approved. The period of time that you should have been earning benefits, but were not yet approved, allows funds to accumulate for you. Those funds are made available to you in a lump sum payment upon your approval, and these attorneys take a certain percentage of this back pay as payment for their services.
Limits on Percentages
Before you accept the help of an attorney, you will come to an agreement that must be accepted by the SSA. The SSA limits these fees to no more than 25% of your back pay. You and your attorney are free to come to an agreement that stipulates less than that amount but not more. Not only is this agreement approved and overseen by the SSA, the money is actually paid directly to the attorney from the SSA when your back pay distribution is approved. You may still be billed for miscellaneous incidentals, like shipping and mail expenses, but you will know about these expenses well in advance.
To learn more about getting representation to push your claim through, contact an attorney such as Cook, Glen today.