Diana Chaikin

Attorney · Seattle University School of Law

Diana Chaikin is a legal editor specializing in disability law at Nolo. She started writing articles as a freelancer in 2021 and joined the staff in 2022. Diana has worked as a solo practitioner based out of Seattle representing claimants before administrative law judges in Social Security disability hearings.

Education. Diana received a B.A. in Political Science from New York University and a J.D. from Seattle University School of Law, where she served as article editor on the Seattle Journal for Social Justice. During law school, Diana interned at the American Civil Liberties Union of Alaska and Corbis Corporation. She also wrote an article on the Visual Artists Rights Act and how it pertains to outsider artists.

Disability experience. Fresh out of law school, Diana worked as Attorney Advisor for the Social Security Administration Office of Hearings Operations (formerly Office of Disability Adjudication and Review). While there, she worked for several administrative appeals judges to ensure disability decisions met the administration’s standard for quality. She then decided to work on the other side of the bench, successfully representing disability claimants for over 10 years before coming to Nolo.

Goals and interests. Diana finds satisfaction in making complex areas of the law seem intuitive to nonlawyers. She is a member of the Washington State Bar Association and the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives (NOSSCR), and is on the board of the Washington Lawyers for the Arts.


Articles By Diana Chaikin

Getting Social Security Disability Benefits for Dementia
You may qualify for disability if you have significant cognitive decline that keeps you from working for at least a year.
How to Find a Good Disability Lawyer
Asking the right questions will ensure you find a qualified, experienced, and ethical disability attorney.
How Much Does a Social Security Disability Lawyer Cost?
Disability lawyers generally cost about a quarter of your SSDI or SSI back payments—if you win.
Receiving Social Security Disability Benefits After a Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)
If you've suffered a traumatic brain injury that prevents you from working, you may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits.
When to Talk to a Social Security Disability Lawyer
If you think you won't be able to work for a long time, consider a consultation with a Social Security disability lawyer.
Getting Disability Benefits for Autism
Adults and children with autism who have serious difficulty with interpersonal communication may qualify for SSDI or SSI benefits.
Understanding Your Unfavorable ALJ Decision (Social Security Disability Denial)
Here's how you can understand an ALJ's decision denying you Social Security disability benefits.
Qualifying for Disability Benefits for a Listed Impairment
If you have strong medical records, you may qualify for disability automatically by meeting the description of an impairment listed in the SSA Blue Book.
How Social Security Judges Your Physical or Mental Capacity (RFC) for Work
Your residual functional capacity (RFC) is an important part of a Social Security disability determination.
How Much Can You Work While Receiving SSI Disability Benefits?
You can work as long as your countable income doesn't go above the SSI income limit.