SOCIAL SECURITY & DISABILITY OVERVIEW

A Social Security Disability Legal Team With Experience and Heart

Disability is never the plan. No one goes into life thinking they’re going to end up disabled and unable to work or even care for themselves. The Social Security Administration helps by providing income and benefits to those who qualify, but getting those benefits isn’t easy.

And that’s why we’re here.

Many Qualifying Disabilities, One Firm to Help With Them All

No matter what caused your disability – a car accident, a workplace injury, or simply failing health, among many other causes – the help that Social Security Disability offers could make an enormous difference in your quality of life. They are benefits worth fighting for.

The Law Offices of James Scott Farrin has helped thousands of injured North Carolinians, and our teams are adept at working together on different aspects of our clients’ claims when needed. Our Social Securityauto accidentworkers’ compensationpersonal injury, and product liability attorneys and professional staff recognize opportunities and can cooperatively fight on your behalf if necessary. In particularly complicated cases like car and work injuries, or any situation that leaves a person permanently disabled, it’s not uncommon for us to coordinate those cases and represent all aspects of them.

We Fight for the North Carolina Social Security Disability Benefits to Which You May Be Entitled

We take pride in representing each and every client, particularly in light of North Carolina’s lengthy Social Security Disability hearing wait times and long history of case denials. With an average hearing wait time of more than 21 months, North Carolina’s Social Security Disability offices have some of the longest wait times in the country.

As if waiting all that time isn’t bad enough, once claimants finally get an initial hearing, more than two-thirds are denied. And more than 85% of those filing a second time are denied!

That doesn’t stop us from persevering and trying to get our clients what they may deserve in our efforts to help ease their financial burdens. Don’t just take no for an answer. Fight for the benefits you may deserve.

A Social Security Disability Team With Experience, Compassion, and Dedication

We know from firsthand, inside experience how the system works, what they look for to accept a claim, the importance of filing the correct forms and meeting strict deadlines, and what medical records to present. How? Several members of our team have prior Social Security Disability experience working inside the Social Security Administration.

Meet the Attorneys

Headshot of Rick Fleming, Social Security Disability Attorney at the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin

Attorney Rick Fleming

Rick Fleming is a firm shareholder and head of our Social Security Disability department. He is an NC State Bar Board Certified Specialist in Social Security Disability law – a claim only about 50 out of more than 30,500+ North Carolina licensed attorneys can make.3

He is also a board member and was voted secretary of the National Organization of Social Security Claimants’ Representatives (NOSSCR) in 2020. NOSSCR is a dedicated bar association for those who represent the disabled for Social Security Disability benefits. It advocates for improvements in Social Security Disability programs, and works to ensure that the disabled have access to highly qualified representation.

 “NOSSCR works for all sides—the disabled, their attorneys, and the adjudicators. Its intention is to keep the system fair and accessible. Social Security is a proven anti-poverty program that has laid the foundation for millions of American families, not just a fortunate few. NOSSCR provides the leadership and the tools that help attorneys provide top-notch representation.”

Rick is fluent in Spanish and takes pride in representing North Carolina’s Hispanic/Latino community – a culture he admires. Rick is admitted to the US Supreme Court, US Court of Appeals, and the US district courts for the Eastern and Middle Districts of North Carolina. As a past chair of the NC. State Bar’s Social Security Disability Law Specialty Committee and an active member of many other advocacy organizations, he is a tireless advocate for our clients and others outside our offices whose voices may otherwise go unheard.

Headshot of Michael Williams, Attorney at the Law Offices of James Scott FarrinAttorney Michael Williams

Michael Williams’ experience spans more than two decades, with time on both sides of the negotiating table. He worked as an insurance adjuster, and upon graduating law school, worked as defense counsel for insurance companies. His experience as an adjuster, researcher, litigator, and advocate gives him a profound perspective.

He’s often the first attorney people speak to when they want our help. He uses his knowledge and experience to anticipate the obstacles each client may face. He knows how to ask the right questions, evaluate each case on its merits, and determine whether or not we can help.

 

Jennifer TaylorAttorney Jennifer Taylor

Jennifer Taylor has a strong background in representing and advocating for low-income and disabled clients. She has worked in the Social Security Disability field for many years and was formerly North Carolina State Bar Board Certified as a Social Security Disability Specialist. Jennifer is also a former Chair of the Disability Advocacy Section of the NC Advocates for Justice. She has taught and planned many continuing legal education seminars in the field of Social Security Disability law.

Paralegal and Administrative Leaders

Kevin Midkiff

Before coming to the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin, Kevin spent six years as a Disability Determination Services examiner for the Social Security Administration, rising to Level II. As a Level II examiner, he not only determined the merits of Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) initial applications, but was also active in the reconsideration process and in conducting continuing disability reviews.

As a paralegal who works directly with our Social Security Disability clients, Kevin is now using his prior knowledge to try to help clients get the benefits they may deserve.

“Our attorneys and our entire Social Security Disability team, in general, have a lot of experience not only in the legal arena but within Social Security itself. Most of the folks we deal with are hardworking people who, whether from an illness or injury, can’t work anymore, and just don’t know how to advocate for themselves. What layperson would? The system can be very complicated and cumbersome, and you need experienced people to advocate on your behalf. I know. I’ve been on the other side.”

Kevin holds a Bachelor’s and a Master’s Degree in English from North Carolina State University.

Amy Casey

Amy has worked exclusively as a Social Security Disability paralegal for nearly 20 years. Prior to that, she was a Social Security Disability Determination Services Examiner. Part of that time was spent as a Single Decision Maker Examiner – a person with authority to make medical determinations on certain cases without the review or signature of a medical consultant, such as a doctor.

After seeing the bureaucracy involved in making some Disability determinations, she decided her knowledge and skills would better serve those seeking Social Security Disability benefits on the other side as a legal representative.

“I felt that the focus at Disability Determination Services was too numbers-driven, and it seemed more important to the Social Security Administration to make quick determinations – sometimes without having all the facts. As an experienced paralegal, I try to make sure that we provide as detailed information as possible on behalf of our clients so that the determiners can do the best job possible processing their claims.”

Amy finds that many formerly hopeless clients regain encouragement once she explains what the process entails and reassures them that they have the Farrin Social Security Disability team working to try to make their claim successful. She holds a BA in Criminal Justice from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

Wendie Roberts

Wendie worked as a Disability Determination Services (DDS) examiner for five years until she became disenchanted with its inherent bureaucracy. She left DDS to work, first as an insurance adjuster and later as a paralegal in workers’ compensation and Social Security Disability. Wendie has been a paralegal for more than 15 years, leveraging her experience as a DDS examiner and a paralegal to assist claimants in building their cases to try to get the benefits they may be entitled to. She takes pride in getting to know her clients and giving them her best.

“Having worked for Social Security and insurance companies, I know how hard it can be and how long it can take for many well-deserving people to get benefits. I use my experience as a former SSD insider to try to build cases, so our clients are presented to SSD in the most favorable light.”

Wendie holds two BAs from North Carolina Wesleyan College – one in Justice & Public Policy and another in Psychology. She is also a Notary Public in the state of NC.

India Streeter

India is our Administrative Case Manager. She works with the team and our clients to ensure cases get up and running promptly and that evidence/medical records are requested and received. India is pursuing her degree in Business Administration.

Call the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin and Tell Them You Mean Business

The Social Security Administration has its own agenda. While they’re providing necessary benefits to people in need, they do not necessarily make it easy, simple, or convenient to obtain those benefits. If you’re having trouble claiming Social Security Disability benefits that you believe you deserve, we may be able to help!

Call us any time 24/7 at 866-900-7078, or you can chat with us or contact us online. We’re happy to evaluate your case at no charge, and we’ll tell you whether or not we believe we can help you. Don’t hesitate – the Social Security Administration makes people wait long enough as it is!

North Carolina State Bar, February 2021

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