The Only Utah Attorney Certified in Social Security Disability Law by the National Board of Trial Advocacy (Accredited by the American Bar Association). Compassionate, Efficient and Competent legal services.
For over thirty years, my firm has provided quality legal services to people in need who have been unable to help themselves. It is not that they lack abilities (although some do); It is that they are stymied by a bureaucracy that gives fragile and tenuous support when it does give support, and most of the time is indifferent. Filing for and receiving Social Security disability is a long process, made more so by having medical problems and not working. Social Security disability is an informal, nonadversarial system without a person on the other side to negotiate with or argue against. Our team has helped provide encouragement, structure and continuity to a chaotic process. I have done Medicaid hearings for terminations, Continuing Disability review hearings for people on Social Security, Special Needs trusts for over asset SSI clients, housing list intervention for HUD vouchers, and assistance with creditors and utility companies. We have assisted with real estate sales for clients in foreclosure. You may think that because you know you are disabled that all you need do is get your own doctor to say you are disabled and then the award is automatic. Not so! You may have heard of someone who easily got disability yet does not look or seem disabled as you. These beliefs are far from the truth. The system's legal definition of disability is exceptionally strict, the waits are long and getting longer, the average award is much less than the working minimum wage, and only the most severely disabled are awarded benefits (67% at the first stage, 10% at the second, 40% at the hearing). I started out my legal career thinking I would be a tax attorney. I worked close to 15 years with IRS and then an accounting firm and then on my own. I took my first non-tax Social Security case and saw what I thought was injustice. My client's heart condition killed her before we got to a hearing. One of my first AIDs cases was a 3rd grade-educated woman who had been abused as a child, married her husband because he wore a white-shirt and a tie, and got infected on a dirty needle from monies earned in the oil fields. Her husband divorced her and went to medical school. Her family had a mock funeral for her because the neighbors shunned them because they were afraid of infection. I visited her hospital bed where she lay dying in order to try and get some SSI benefits for her children. If you are disabled and are reading this, KNOW THAT IT IS A LONG, (sometimes lonely) PROCESS and what we offer is consistent, quality representation through the whole process and not just when you get to the hearing. (Copr. 2018)
115 East Social Hall Avenue
Salt Lake City UT 84147
One-half hour free consulation
Social Security Representation until Administrative Law Judge Hearing for twenty-five percent contingent fee limited to statutory amount. Federal Court Social Security Representation for contingent fee limited twenty-five percent. Special Needs Trusts, Estate Planning and Medicare planning for fixed fees.
$300.00 per hour
Monday through Thursday 9-4, Friday by appointment
Stacy Holtfeltz (Post hearing) Miriam (Pre-hearing)
Our style is holistic. Social Security is insurance intended to be a safety net and shield for the aged, disabled and unprotected against poverty and medical expenses. Unfortunately, there are holes in the net which is also too far off! Our job during the process is to assist our clients by lessening the stress of developing the right medical and factual records of disability. True, eventually the financial and medical benefits for our clients make a world of difference; but in the meantime clients have to live physically, mentally and emotionally. It is necessary to provide support in the interim. Our staff is very carrying and concerned. (Copyright 2018) We assist with all documents. We encourage clients to write their documents in pencil and sign them and let us review them before we edit and scan them. The problem is that we are not good observers of ourselves and those close to us may have distorted views that interfere with the correct perception of our abilities and handicaps. We encourage work, if possible. The first question to ask is --If I work, what are the disadvantages? In response you should think... what will happen to my self esteem if I lose another job, what will the exertion do to exacerbate my physical and mental problems, how will I be able to handle the rest of my life while I work. If the detriments seem manageable, then think of the advantages in the survival, in the compensation, in the socialization, and increased self esteem. However, only then think of the effect on Social Security. Social Security does not pay enough, takes too long to get, and denies too, too many people. Why let the possibility of getting it dictate your life? If you work, there are three good outcomes -- you may succeed (in which case you will make more than Social Security could pay you), you may fail (in which case you -- and your boss --can tell the judge what kind of work you failed at and what you experienced) or you may find a work level at which you can both work and get Social Security.
J.D. Hastings College of Law, San Francisco, California B.A. Philosophy, University of California, Berkeley, California
Past and Present Professional Organizations:
Utah No. 384 (1974) and California No. 50158 (1972) State Bar Associations,
Utah Association of Certified Public Accountants (1981),
National Organization of Social Security Representatives (1993),
National Board of Trial Advocacy Specialization in Social Security (2001), and
National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (1996).
* Nolo has confirmed that every member attorney has a valid license and is in good standing with the state agency that licenses lawyers. Any past disbarments and suspensions (with possible exceptions for minor violations or nonpayment of dues, in our discretion) will be indicated accordingly in the badge. Member attorneys are required to notify Nolo immediately if they become the subject of any disciplinary action by any state licensing agency.