Hey Dilane, first off, good luck on your case!! I had a similiar experience. The lawyer I hired had no partners, it was just him and 2 paralegals. I had 2 meetings with him and then the rest of my coorespondance was with the female paralegal and she and I did not mesh. She was short with me, made me feel stupid and when I got off the phone I did not have a warm fuzzy feeling! All turned out good in the end with a succesful win so alls well that ends well! Hang in there and if they get cranky, either tell them to not speak to you like that that you have every right to get answers to your questions, you are the client after all. Or if you are the non-confrontational kind, you are only a few short weeks of being done and hopefully they have done their job and you will win your case. I'm sending tons of good juju, good luck!!
I cannot add a whole lot here, Frances has done a wonderful job in her posts to you. It is a shame you were spoken to in the manner that you were. High caliber or not, thats no excuse. I have worked in the legal field over 20 years and know that is not how clients are handled when they have questions. In their particular field their clients are their bread and butter. I will say this, I would stop worrying about the atty getting his bvd's in a wad because you said he was rude or whatever. This guy will go to your hearing and do what he was hired to do. He is not going to go in there and sabotage your case, why, because he is not going to risk his license for any client. I think you were right, he probably was in the middle of something else when you called, but that's still no excuse to speak to someone like that.
As for the old man of the group, you can bet he keeps a tally on the wins in his office. He also keeps a reign on who is not winning their cases and I am sure they are short term employees. Like one of them said, if they don't win your case, they do not get paid one penny, so remember that, winning these cases is how he collects his paycheck every week or however their payday is set up. So keep that in mind when you start doubting things. Try to calm yourself the best you can.
I can answer your question about the old PCP. No, a letter from him/her would have no bearing on your claim. Your medical records for care as a result of your disability is the only thing that they are interested in. Character references are not part of a SSD claim.
As for not being able to find out info on the judge, he could be a visiting judge. I know many times we had visiting judges brought in to get some of the back log moved. This happens alot in areas where they are way behind on getting hearings set because of the backlog.
Really, no one here can say if they think you will be awarded benefits. We have no way of knowing that kind of info. As long as your conditions fall under SS guidelines and you have medical evidence to support this, your chances are as good as anyone elses.
I would just try to calm myself as much as I can. I know in another post of your you spoke of how anxious you were because of the pending hearing. This hearing is informal, no trick questions, so try to relax.
Post Edited (DiLane) : 7/18/2009 6:19:57 PM (GMT-6)
Please do not think I am defending your atty, by no means am I doing that. If it were me I would have fired them probably a week after I met with them or most likely not hired them to begin with. No, this is not how we treated a client, no there was never a "prep" by phone for anything, my boss hated the phone. You wanted to talk to him, you called me and I gave you an appt, real simple. In 18 yrs my boss never scheduled an appt for anything, thats what he hired me to do and he would tell you to call back and ask for me simply because he did not know how to put a call on hold & transfer the phone call lol. The man had no clue how to operate the phone system at the office, other than to place a call out or pick up a call and alot of times that was done wrong with alot of cussing & hollering because he screwed it up lol. True story. I made his haircut appts, his dr appt, I scheduled his surgery because of colon cancer, I scheduled his life. We were very laid back in office, our waiting room was fulll every morning, he worked till noon every day and thats its. He owned the place and we had our trial layers who handled litigation. We had two sections in the firm, pre-lit & lit. He & I were prelit. He never typed, wrote or dictated a letter in 18 yrs either that I worked for him, let alone sign a letter. He never read a letter, thats what he paid me to do lol. He paid me very well to take care of him and his practice. Litigation the same way. Our attys were taken care of and so was our clients. I settled cases, I was a licensed insurance adjuster (he sent me to school) which alot of plaintiff firms started doing in the 80's. I knew how to evaulate a claim. Our clients trusted us very much, if a client had a problem it generally got resolved, if not then no one would ever make that person happy and there are those kinds out there.
Furthermore, I do not agree with how your atty's office handles things, but my answer to that is every office is different on how they do things. Lawyers good or bad have one thing in common, they are greedy just like drs. Losing a case is a big deal, especially in a place like that when as I said its their bread & butter. Rude or not they do not want to lose a case. Frances hit on some good points about how many offices run things, I know how we did and it was not like that. I would probably never make a good client because I know how I would expect to be treated, the way I treated our clients. They spent more time with me than they did my boss ,lol. They trusted me and I heard more personal problems than I should have, but I would always listen, If I did not have an answer I got the answer for them. I realize not all offices do this too. In other words our clients were our paychecks and we handled them with kid gloves. We did not advertise on tv, thats repulsive the ones that do, we did not take out a $60,000 ad in the yellow pages, his business was built on word of mouth.
Post Edited (straydog) : 7/19/2009 8:52:10 AM (GMT-6)