Finding The Right Disability Lawyer
10 Important Questions to Ask a Disability Firm Before You Hire Them
Does the firm specialize in disability insurance law?
DarrasLaw is the largest disability and long-term care insurance litigation firm in the nation focusing EXCLUSIVELY on individual and group long-term disability cases for policyholders. We are the most honored and highly decorated firm in the country. Our founding partner, Frank N. Darras has seen, evaluated, litigated and resolved more individual and long-term disability cases than any other lawyer in America.
What is your experience in handling claims with my disabling condition?
DarrasLaw has over 100 years of combined litigation and insurance claim experience representing people with every type of illness and disability imaginable, including: M.S., cardiovascular problems, Chrons, I.B.S., digestive issues, cancer, COVID-19, respiratory, lung and neurological conditions, back, neck and foot issues, and every type of accident causing disability.
What is your litigation experience against my insurance carrier?
Disability insurance carriers ALL know we get our clients terrific results due to our national success and repeated litigation victories. We have successfully litigated and resolved cases against Unum, Minnesota Mutual, Lincoln Financial, Hartford, Aetna, Prudential, MetLife, Lloyds of London, CIGNA, Mutual of Omaha, Liberty, New York and many, many more.
What do past clients say about DarrasLaw?
Our clients say we’re “Extraordinary,” “They were treated like family,” “They felt they were the only case in our office,” “We [DarrasLaw] constantly communicated effectively” and “We [DarrasLaw] empathized with them.”
Our attorneys are called “Exceptional at what they do,” “Supremely knowledgeable,” “Professional,” “Caring,” “The Best of The Best! Period!,” “You are in a disability league of your own!” “Thank you is so inadequate,” and “You changed our lives.”
Is your free case review and free claim advice truly free?.
At DarrasLaw, we always offer free consultations on all individual and group disability insurance matters. We know it is a different way to practice law, but we put our clients’ needs as our top priority. No matter the size of your claim you receive real help in addressing your medical, financial and occupational claim issues.
What are the firm’s online reviews?
With scores of online reviews going back many years, DarrasLaw has a perfect rating with AVVO, the top online attorney rating service and 4.8 out of 5.0 stars with Google reviews.
Are you recognized by these prominent award organizations?
Best Law Firms in America has rated DarrasLaw as Tier 1 law firm, LawDragon has put Frank N. Darras in its Top 500 Lawyers in America for 16 years in a row, the Daily Journal named Frank N. Darras a Top Healthcare Attorney in California, not to mention Super Lawyers, Martindale-Hubbell “AV-Preeminent,” the highest attainable rating, Best Lawyers in America rating every year since 2006, Top 100 Trial Lawyers in the Nation, Insurance Bad Faith Top 10 Trial Lawyer in the nation, LawDragon Top 500 Employment Lawyer, LawDragon Top 500 Consumer Lawyer, Lead Counsel Rated, Lawyers of Distinction, 10/10 “superb” rating from AVVO, A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, RUE rating is: Best Lawyers in America, ASLA Top 100 Lawyers, America’s Top 100 High Stakes Litigators, Legal Leaders Top Rated Lawyer and more.
Who is going to handle my case and what type of ongoing communication can I expect?
You’ll be assigned a point person, lawyer, paralegal, secretary and administrative contact support person on your particular case, but we take a team approach to every client we serve. We are here to quickly respond to questions and are always available if you need us.
How do you handle cases and are you willing to take mine to trial?
Insurance companies will tell you DarrasLaw hires the top medical, financial and vocational experts and prepares their clients’ files impeccably. We’ve taken cases all the way to the courtroom and won at trial or on appeal whenever appropriate.
What type of resources does the firm have at its disposal to represent me?
DarrasLaw has a renowned and honored disability insurance staff to providing a highly qualified, in-depth analysis of complex disability sickness and accident claims. We have the resources to do battle with any insurance company across the entire United States. You are never too far away or have a valid disability claim that’s too large or too small for DarrasLaw. We care about our clients, their issues and how we can ease the disability burden. Our legal expertise and repeated success takes care of the dollars.
DarrasLaw knows no one ever wants to be injured, sick or disabled. Unfortunately, there is a lot to consider when an injury or debilitating illness prevents you from working. Once you are disabled, your focus should be on a quick, complete recovery and getting better. In reality, your life will certainly get busier. Between doctor’s visits, testing, picking up prescriptions at the pharmacy and the never ending claim requests along with communicating with your disability insurance company, you’ll be in a potentially difficult situation. Adding worry about your current finances, while filing and trying to successfully complete confusing and tricky disability claim forms can be incredibly debilitating and overwhelming.
Hiring the right disability lawyer to handle your disability claim is the best way to reduce your stress and get the benefits you paid for and you are entitled to receive. Below are six tips to use as a guide or checklist to determine which disability lawyer will work out best for you and your family.
Disability Lawyer Hiring Tips
1. Confirm that your lawyer exclusively litigates individual and/or group disability, insurance and ERISA claims.
Disability law is highly specialized and differs significantly from personal injury or other areas of the law. A general practice attorney is often not equipped to competently handle cases involving individual or group disability benefits. Specialization is required and is especially necessary when a complicated and continually evolving federal law, the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), is involved.
ERISA generally governs group and employer-sponsored disability insurance policies and has its own time sensitive, deadline demanding, unforgiving requirements. Fatal claim mistakes are easily made and often result in a legitimate claim being delayed, terminated or denied.
ERISA and disability insurance law is so complicated that few attorneys find long-term success in this specialized field. Make sure whomever you select as your lawyer has a stellar record of repeated favorable outcomes resolving individual and group disability claims.
2. Review your lawyers credentials.
Ensure that your potential lawyer focuses his or her practice exclusively on disability.
- How many ERISA disability cases have they resolved or litigated?
- How many individual disability cases have they litigated and where?
- Do they have memberships in legal associations and disability-related organizations locally and nationally?
- Is the website thorough and informative including videos?
- Oustanding client testimonials?
- Awards and acknowledgments from peers, legal associations and the media?
- Number of years in disability practice exclusively?
- Have they ever taken depositions at the home office of any billion dollar insurance company and how often?
- Have they taught, lectured, authored guides, aids and consumer information so people who are disabled have the resources to understand the battle they are in?
- Does your lawyer know who the judges are and do they know what law firm will defend your case?
- Does the law firm have milestone achievements?
- Are the law firms results favorable and successful?
Call your potential lawyer and ask important questions about your claim.
3. Assess your potential lawyer and how the firm is staffed.
In addition to the necessity of your lawyer having tremendous legal prowess and an ability to communicate clearly, disability lawyers need a foundational knowledge of healthcare, medicine and biology. They also need access to and the financial ability to hire the best experts to prove the clients case.
Knowing that your lawyer has direct knowledge or a line of communication to consult medical, financial and occupational experts will provide peace of mind and added confidence. Is your lawyer known nationally for hiring only the top doctors, CPA’s, vocational experts, functional capacity evaluators and claim file experts?
4. Ask: Is the lawyer willing to review your claim file or administrative record for free, no matter how large?
High-quality ERISA attorneys and individual disability lawyers rarely offer totally free initial consultations and claim file reviews. At DarrasLaw our, experienced disability attorneys and ERISA lawyers will review your policy, medical and financial records and offer honest feedback about whether you have a valid case that can be won or settled with the insurer. We do it for free so you know what your case issues are and how to successfully proceed.
5. Note your prospective lawyers’ approach to client service.
Most importantly, standout individual and group ERISA disability lawyers listen to their clients’ every need. While you may get a sense of a law firms’ stature and credibility through word-of-mouth and online reviews, the best way to really know, is to have an initial dialogue with the firm or lawyer you hope to hire. If you’re one of the millions of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, unfortunately, you don’t have years to wait for the approval or reinstatement of disability benefits. You need your disability benefits immediately. Experienced individual disability and group ERISA attorneys understand how to recover your benefits and do it fast.
6. Ask to see a “sample contract”
A contract and binding retainer agreement will spell out the terms and fee structure of your lawyer. The contract should also spell out—in clear and simple language—what the representation will cover and for how long. Review the contract carefully, ask for clarification when needed and only sign when you are comfortable after all your questions are answered.
Use the tips above to help find the right lawyer to competently and successfully handle your disability claim, so that you can focus on your recovery. An experienced, individual disability attorney or ERISA lawyer can act as your counsel and file your case or comprehensively complete your administrative appeal in your group disability case after denial. Your attorney is also able to work with you if you have both group and individual disability insurance to get your claim forms, medical documentation, financial and occupational forms completed properly.
The award-winning individual and nationally renowned group long-term disability attorneys at DarrasLaw always offer free disability policy analysis and free claim consultations to determine whether your individual, group or association related policy entitles you to short and/or long-term disability benefits.
If you are suffering from any type of mental or physical injury or illness that prevents you from performing the important duties of your occupation, or any other occupation, please call us today at (866) 276-3054 or contact us online.