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Topic: My lawyer received $6000 from dependants back benifits  (Read 1560 times)
jamess1970
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« on: January 08, 2017, 12:43:10 PM »

Was my lawyer entitled to this since the agreement did not spell out him specifically get part of dependant backpay? 
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Name: James
Location: ohio
Age at Application: 43
Disability: DDD, COPD, Post Laminectomy Syndrome (AKA Failed Back Surgery, Coranry Artery Disease, Multilevel Cervical Stenosis,
Date Applied: 12/2013
First Approval/Denial Date: 6/2014 Denied
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: 12/2014 Denied
Date Hearing Notice Received: August 2016
Hearing Date: Oct 5 2016 (Judge told me at hearing would approve claim)
ALJ Approval/Denial Date: Decision letter rec 10/31
Date Award Letter Received: Dec 5 2016
Date Back Pay Received: Dec 5 2016
Lit Love
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« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2017, 01:41:58 PM »

You can appeal it if it isn't in your contract.  My attorney did not attempt to collect on my child's benefits.  Some do, some don't.
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jamess1970
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« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2017, 04:09:00 PM »

Lit Love, how would I go about that?
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Name: James
Location: ohio
Age at Application: 43
Disability: DDD, COPD, Post Laminectomy Syndrome (AKA Failed Back Surgery, Coranry Artery Disease, Multilevel Cervical Stenosis,
Date Applied: 12/2013
First Approval/Denial Date: 6/2014 Denied
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: 12/2014 Denied
Date Hearing Notice Received: August 2016
Hearing Date: Oct 5 2016 (Judge told me at hearing would approve claim)
ALJ Approval/Denial Date: Decision letter rec 10/31
Date Award Letter Received: Dec 5 2016
Date Back Pay Received: Dec 5 2016
Helper
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« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2017, 04:24:00 PM »

Lit Love, how would I go about that?


Look at the letter from SSA outlining the attorney fees.  There should be information on appealing the attorney fee.  There is typically a very short deadline to appeal the fee.


Point of clarification  - when you say that the lawyer received $6000 from dependent's back benefits, do you mean that the lawyer received $6000 from you & $6000 from dependents.  Or $6000 total when your & the dependent benefits are combined?
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Age at Application: 26 age of onset (but I did not apply until 28)
Date Applied: August 2011
First Approval/Denial Date: November 2011
Additional Info: I was fortunate to be approved on my initial application due to extensive medical records (12+ doctors) & documentation of unsuccessful work attempts even with significant accommodations
jamess1970
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« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2017, 06:43:06 PM »

Helper, he received $6000 from my backpay then received $6000 from my sons backpay, for a total of $12000. Which in my opinion is wrong!
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Name: James
Location: ohio
Age at Application: 43
Disability: DDD, COPD, Post Laminectomy Syndrome (AKA Failed Back Surgery, Coranry Artery Disease, Multilevel Cervical Stenosis,
Date Applied: 12/2013
First Approval/Denial Date: 6/2014 Denied
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: 12/2014 Denied
Date Hearing Notice Received: August 2016
Hearing Date: Oct 5 2016 (Judge told me at hearing would approve claim)
ALJ Approval/Denial Date: Decision letter rec 10/31
Date Award Letter Received: Dec 5 2016
Date Back Pay Received: Dec 5 2016
Lit Love
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« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2017, 08:40:07 PM »

It's not wrong if you agreed to it.  It is wrong if you didn't.  I believe your attorney had to provide SS with a copy of the fee agreement, so read it again carefully.
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« Last Edit: January 09, 2017, 09:48:30 AM by Lit Love »
jamess1970
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« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2017, 09:00:27 AM »

Lit Love, I did read it again and it seems to be the total of both claims he should only receive $6000, here's a copy of it so in case I'm reading something wrong:

We agree the if SSA favorably decides the claim(s), I will pay my representative a fee equal to the lessor of 25 percent of the past due benefits resulting from my claim(s) or $6000.00. (Or such higher amount as the Commissioner of Social Security my prescribe pursuant to section 206 (a) (21) (A) of the Social Security Act)

We understand that Social Security past due benefits are the total amount of money to which I and my auxiliary beneficiary(ies) become entitled through the month before the month SSA effectuates a favorable administrative determination or decision on my claim.

We understand the Social Security past due benefits are the total amount of money to which I and any auxiliary beneficiary(ies) become entitled through the month before the month SSA effectuates a favorable administrative determination or decision on my Social Security claim and the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) past due benefits are the total amount of money for which I become eligible through the month SSA effectuates a favorable administrative determination or decision on my SSI claim. We further understand that the fee for both claims may not exceed the lessor of $6000.00 (Or such higher amount as the Commissioner of Social Security may prescribe pursuant to section 206 (a) (2) (A) of the Social Security Act) or 25 percent of the combined past due benefits.
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Name: James
Location: ohio
Age at Application: 43
Disability: DDD, COPD, Post Laminectomy Syndrome (AKA Failed Back Surgery, Coranry Artery Disease, Multilevel Cervical Stenosis,
Date Applied: 12/2013
First Approval/Denial Date: 6/2014 Denied
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: 12/2014 Denied
Date Hearing Notice Received: August 2016
Hearing Date: Oct 5 2016 (Judge told me at hearing would approve claim)
ALJ Approval/Denial Date: Decision letter rec 10/31
Date Award Letter Received: Dec 5 2016
Date Back Pay Received: Dec 5 2016
grove800
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« Reply #7 on: January 10, 2017, 03:40:56 AM »

It sounds to me in plain English that he should only be receiving 6,000.00 total.  Are you sure you read all the fine print that put in the agreement?  You will need to contest that at the proper level by letter.  I believe helper ot lit love told you what to do.
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😊
Name: Vicki
Location: IL
Age at Application: 59. Age now 62
Disability: Hypogammagobulimannenia , aggressive arthritis spine, 4 level cervical fusion, chronic pain, DDD,COPD,
Date Applied: 7/2013
First Approval/Denial Date: 11/2013
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: 5/2014
Date OTR requested: 6/2014
Hearing Date: January 19, 2016
Date Award Letter Received: February 3, 2016. per benefit letter on my SS website
Date Back Pay Received: February 4, 2016 direct deposit
Additional Info: fully favorable letter by mail Feb 6, 2016. Medicare started Dec 2015
jamess1970
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Posts: 100


« Reply #8 on: January 10, 2017, 06:10:15 AM »

grove800, I have a simple one page agreement. What I typed is what all the agreement says. I plan on filing a appeal today because I thought how I read it, it  was $6000 period!
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Name: James
Location: ohio
Age at Application: 43
Disability: DDD, COPD, Post Laminectomy Syndrome (AKA Failed Back Surgery, Coranry Artery Disease, Multilevel Cervical Stenosis,
Date Applied: 12/2013
First Approval/Denial Date: 6/2014 Denied
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: 12/2014 Denied
Date Hearing Notice Received: August 2016
Hearing Date: Oct 5 2016 (Judge told me at hearing would approve claim)
ALJ Approval/Denial Date: Decision letter rec 10/31
Date Award Letter Received: Dec 5 2016
Date Back Pay Received: Dec 5 2016
jamess1970
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Posts: 100


« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2017, 09:38:12 AM »

Does anyone know if this goes back to the Judge who approved me or does it get reviewed by SSA in Falls Church?
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Name: James
Location: ohio
Age at Application: 43
Disability: DDD, COPD, Post Laminectomy Syndrome (AKA Failed Back Surgery, Coranry Artery Disease, Multilevel Cervical Stenosis,
Date Applied: 12/2013
First Approval/Denial Date: 6/2014 Denied
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: 12/2014 Denied
Date Hearing Notice Received: August 2016
Hearing Date: Oct 5 2016 (Judge told me at hearing would approve claim)
ALJ Approval/Denial Date: Decision letter rec 10/31
Date Award Letter Received: Dec 5 2016
Date Back Pay Received: Dec 5 2016
Bonzai
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Technical Support


« Reply #10 on: February 11, 2017, 11:41:50 AM »

In a straight award after an ALJ hearing and no appeal involved, the ALJ will review the Administrative Review of attorney fees that you have to ask for.  Just send a copy of your fee agreement with a letter asking Social Security to review the attorney fees, and why you feel the attorney overcharged you.
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"If one of these engines fails, how far will the other one take us?"
"All the way to the scene of the crash!" - Ron White
Name: Bonzai
Location: TN
Age at Application: 47
Disability: BP 1, OSA, HTN, DM II, Arthritis Knee
Date Applied: Feb 08
First Approval/Denial Date: Denied Dec 08
Reconsideration Approval/Denial Date: Denied Mar 09
Hearing Date: second hearing June 2012
ALJ Approval/Denial Date: Approval - Aug 2012
Date Award Letter Received: Oct 2012
Date Back Pay Received: Late Sept 2012
Additional Info: remanded
dLow12
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« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2017, 03:55:16 AM »

Was my lawyer entitled to this since the agreement did not spell out him specifically get part of dependant backpay? 

Here is the link to your answer straight from SSA.  Pretty much unless your attorney individually represented your child for his auxiliary benefits he is only receiving 25% or $6,000 which ever is less of your combined back pay. So, in other words he is not supposed to be getting $6,000 from each of your entitlements. Provide them SSA's own word for reference, and see what kind of nonsense they try and tell you.

https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0203920035 (SEE B. Policy)

https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/hallex/I-01/I-1-2-12.html (SEE A3)
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Lit Love
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« Reply #12 on: February 12, 2017, 06:20:48 AM »

Was my lawyer entitled to this since the agreement did not spell out him specifically get part of dependant backpay?  

Here is the link to your answer straight from SSA.  Pretty much unless your attorney individually represented your child for his auxiliary benefits he is only receiving 25% or $6,000 which ever is less of your combined back pay. So, in other words he is not supposed to be getting $6,000 from each of your entitlements. Provide them SSA's own word for reference, and see what kind of nonsense they try and tell you.

https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0203920035 (SEE B. Policy)

https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/hallex/I-01/I-1-2-12.html (SEE A3)

Thank you for the links.  I disagree with your interpretation after reading Part D of the POMS link though, which does allow for the attorney to collect fees from the unrepresented auxiliary beneficiary and says to refer to: https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/rulings/oasi/39/SSR68-61-oasi-39.html

The OP can certainly contest the fee amount if he hasn't already, but it sure appears that the Supreme Court ruling is in the attorney's favor.
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dLow12
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« Reply #13 on: February 12, 2017, 12:09:57 PM »

Was my lawyer entitled to this since the agreement did not spell out him specifically get part of dependant backpay?  

Here is the link to your answer straight from SSA.  Pretty much unless your attorney individually represented your child for his auxiliary benefits he is only receiving 25% or $6,000 which ever is less of your combined back pay. So, in other words he is not supposed to be getting $6,000 from each of your entitlements. Provide them SSA's own word for reference, and see what kind of nonsense they try and tell you.

https://secure.ssa.gov/apps10/poms.nsf/lnx/0203920035 (SEE B. Policy)

https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/hallex/I-01/I-1-2-12.html (SEE A3)

Thank you for the links.  I disagree with your interpretation after reading Part D of the POMS link though, which does allow for the attorney to collect fees from the unrepresented auxiliary beneficiary and says to refer to: https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/rulings/oasi/39/SSR68-61-oasi-39.html

The OP can certainly contest the fee amount if he hasn't already, but it sure appears that the Supreme Court ruling is in the attorney's favor.


The example used to justify the attorney collecting fees from both the wife and child's auxiliary benefits in the case of (Raymond Hopkins, Petitioner, v.Wilbur J. Cohen, Acting Secretary ofHealth, Education, and Welfare) as seen in https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/rulings/oasi/39/SSR68-61-oasi-39.html is that the attorney subsequently did represent the interests of the wife and children when he litigated the question of the husband's disability in federal court. Thus, the attorney is able to collect his fee based on the accrued amount of benefits unless, the amount collected from the amount SSA withholds from the primary beneficiary is sufficient to pay the representative the maximum payable fee, SSA does not withhold past-due benefits from any affected auxiliary.

please correct me if i am wrong as this is a learning process for us all.
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Lit Love
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« Reply #14 on: February 12, 2017, 02:03:58 PM »

If you read D, the policy and even the ruling listed it specifies that the beneficiaries were unrepresented but benefited as a result of the attorney's work on behalf of the claimant.  That's my interpretation.

I'm not discouraging anyone from submitting a review of their attorney's fees, but I'm giving the op a heads up that the prevailing legal opinion seems to allow for what their attorney pulled--and I do mean pulled.  It should be clearly stated in their fee agreement IMO, and leaving negative feedback publicly may be appropriate regardless of the outcome.
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