Applying for Federal Disability Retirement requires a lot of attention to detail; knowing when filing deadlines are, ensuring you have the proper documentation required, and completing all the paperwork necessary for the OPM to accurately make a decision on your claim. Many federal workers are understandably unsure of how the process works and who they can ask for help. While it’s certainly not required to hire an attorney, many people have found hiring one has been extremely helpful. Below are some attributes and questions to keep in mind when searching for a disability attorney.
Communication is key is every part of our lives. When finding an attorney to handle your Federal Disability Retirement case, this should be at the forefront of your mind! We all know that having open and honest communication makes life easier. This is especially important when dealing with an attorney. Would you like it if, after the initial consultation and paying your attorney, you didn’t hear from them for months? No, just like you wouldn’t only talk to your friends or family once a year. Make sure you hire someone that will stay in constant contact with you throughout the process.
Your attorney should be passionate about helping federal workers. Find someone who loves what they do and is constantly learning more about their specific practice. Generally, if you’re passionate about your field, you want to learn as much as possible. This is the type of attorney you want representing you; one that aims for success and gets a sense of accomplishment from helping federal workers.
Hire an attorney who has experience with federal disability claims. You don’t want someone who is a general practice attorney. Chances are, this person would not be able to navigate the tedious process of disability retirement claims, especially if you are denied by the OPM. Find someone who knows the system and is well established. Also, don’t be afraid to look for an attorney outside of your local area. The team at Harris Federal Law Firm has been successfully navigating the OPM and MSPB process for more than a decade and we have helped countless federal workers in all 50 states. Hiring someone with experience is key!
Ask about Fees
Make sure you ask any attorney that you call what their fees are. Find out if they charge a flat fee or aby-the-hour fee. If they charge on a by-the-hour basis, follow up by asking them for an estimate on how long they expect to work on your case. This will give you a better idea of what you can expect to spend. Some offer discounts for union members, so don’t be afraid to ask if you are a member of a union.
Do your Research
You can find just about anything on the internet these days, so use it to your advantage when looking for an attorney. Do research on attorneys you’re considering and find and read reviews on them. Don’t be afraid to ask the attorney if they have former clients who will be willing to speak with you over the phone or in person. Most happy clients are excited to share their success story with others.
Hiring an attorney is an investment. You want to make sure you are getting your money’s worth and that your attorney has your best interest in mind. We would love the opportunity to speak with you if you think you qualify for Federal Disability Retirement. Our consultation is free! Give us a call at 877-226-2723 or fill out this inquiry form.