Getting the Help You Need
Lawyers, insurance advisors, estate and financial planners, health insurance, Medicare experts and other professionals can be invaluable in assessing your legal rights and related financial concerns. Professionals with meaningful experience assisting people with Parkinson’s tread these waters can be particularly helpful; as a fallback, someone experienced in assisting people with other disabling conditions often have useful insight.
Depending on your situation, you may need legal assistance in different areas of law including: the ADA and discrimination, employment, long term disability (income replacement) and other insurance policies, Social Security, Elder Care, Medicare and more.
- Few lawyers specialize in more than one of the above legal issues, so you may need to retain more than one attorney to get the complete job done
- If you don’t know or can’t seem to find attorneys with the necessary expertise, it can be helpful to contact your state or local bar association. Most will have referral services based on areas of legal expertise. And perhaps an even better approach is to ask for the name and telephone number of the attorney who chairs the association’s committee on the area(s) in which you need help. Then call and ask the chair who on his/her committee spends a good portion of his/her day on the area in question, say ADA employment issues for example, and which of them the chair might recommend.
- For employment issues, a useful resource is the National Employment Lawyers Association. In addition, there are a few free employment law clinics sprinkled across the county – most are associated with law schools, so a call to the local law school might uncover one.
It is worth noting that a non-attorney representative may be equally or, some would argue, more effective to represent you than a lawyer on some of these issues, perhaps especially for SSDI. For example, companies such as Allsup have very high success rates in the prosecution of Social Security claims.
Content for this section provided by Mark Rubin, J.D.