The qualities required of a good disability lawyer are many and varied. Disability insurance cases make their way through the Civil Justice system and the skills required of any civil litigation lawyer are required in disability lawyers as well—but there are some additional qualities needed to be an effective and compassionate disability lawyer. Below is a non-exhaustive list, in no particular order.
Qualities of a Good Disability Lawyer
The ability to listen
A good disability lawyer knows how to listen—to opposing lawyers, to the medical providers, but most importantly to the client. Empathy and understanding of what the clients are going through and what they need from the process.
Patience goes hand-in-hand with listening. It is crucial that your disability lawyer always remembers that each client has likely not been through this process before and therefore their disability lawyer needs to have the patience to explain the process as though for the first time with each new client.
During the course of a case for a denied disability claim many decisions need to be made about the direction the case should take and watching out for cues regarding the evidence, the legal issues and the best outcome for the client.
A good disability lawyer has a command of the legal and factual issues that go into each case, coupled with the necessary experience to put the pieces of the puzzle together.
Civil litigation is not mortal combat but showing strength and backbone in the face of the aggressive tactics of the insurance companies requires disability lawyers that are prepared to confront such tactics and to push back on behalf of their clients.
A sense of humour
Disability insurance litigation is a serious business, however, being able to take advantage of a lighter moment to reduce the tension and to break down barriers, can often go a long way in negotiations. We are all, after all, human beings and an appropriate sprinkling of humour can often be a useful tonic in stressful situations—even for disability lawyers.
This is not an exhaustive list, but if your disability lawyer has the above attributes, they are already a long way towards being effective advocates in a disability claim.
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