What does Disability Advocate mean?
A disability advocate is a professional who is trained to help applicants apply and win Social Security Disability benefits. Disability applicants are entitled to representation at every stage in the application and appeal process. Choices for representation can include a disability advocate or a disability lawyer. Most people who hire an advocate or legal representative do so after they have been denied benefits at the application level.
Disability advocates often claim to have more direct contact with their claimants than a disability lawyer, although this would depend on the lawyer and the number of cases they handle. Disability advocates can do the same services as a disability attorney: gathering medical records, helping prepare the disability appeal and arguing a Social Security Disability claimant's case before the Administrative Law Judge. If you hire an advocate you will not pay them any money up front but will pay them 25% of your back pay if you win your SSI or SSDI case. If you do not win your case the disability advocate is not paid.