Yes, but you're paying them to do stuff they never had to do, if you happened to be one of those people who would be approved the first time with or without a lawyer. (That would be like getting a lawyer to read a standard contract to buy a car. You can buy a car without a lawyer's help, but they'll be happy to take the money, if you want them to read it anyway.)
It's best to do the work on your own. The long-winded forms don't become less long-winded by having a lawyer write down the answers for you, and you'll have to be equally involved either way.
Most people don't get lawyers until after they've been denied to the point of going to court, but I didn't have the energy to wait that long, and, frankly, I already knew my disability didn't fit into all the pre-required conditions, so I would be denied. (Botched surgery caused chronic pain around waist. Who gets that to put it down as a regularly occurring disability?) I had done enough research to know that 60+% of people who claim disability denied the first time, so that's when I hired a lawyer, thus getting help on the particulars.
As for who to get? The truth is lawyers don't guarantee success and they only get paid, if they win, so Binder and Binder doesn't look any worse or better than any other lawyers. My lawyer told me even lawyers average a 25% rate, because SSDI is that hard to get on, and so many people try who can still work, but don't want to because it's harder with the disability. The only advantages they have is they know the laws, they get to know the judges enough to know what they want, and they can present that better.
My lawyer didn't want me in the courtroom, so I didn't go. I needed Disability, because the chronic pain stopped me from doing enough things I cannot work. Little did I know, he got me in because the pain was so bad I was suicidal, until doctors helped with the pain. Who'd have thought a year of fighting to not kill myself works, but I can't lift more than 12 pounds, can't sit or stand for more than 90 minutes at a time (without having to lie down for a while), have trouble leaning over for more than 5 seconds, or a bunch of other things just crazy enough to stop me from having an employer keep me for more than half a day, wasn't enough?
He had four cases that day. I was the only one he won. I wouldn't have won, unless I had a lawyer. (It seems my main problem in life is I gave up looking like I'm in pain, because looking like I'm in pain never lessened pain levels, so was a waste of time and energy. That I refuse to act like a victim was the same reason he didn't want me in the courtroom. lol)
Get a lawyer if you're denied, but don't waste your back pay on a lawyer to fill out forms. As for Bender and Bender? I went local lawyer, because that firm would know local judges. Bender and Bender is national, so I don't know if they're lawyers move or are part of the community. To know that Judge Smith is a hard-nose leglist, while Judge Jones wants an emotional tale along with the evidence is the very reason I got a local lawyer.
When I was disabled, my lawyer was a one-man company trying to look big. Three years later, when hubby needed a disability lawyer, we went to the same firm, only to find out there were three lawyers now. I only saw my old lawyer once in passing. (He remembered me. Apparently, I was one of his first cases. lol)
i cant remember who said " a person who represents themselves has a fool for a client"
but it rings true
a lawyer will run rings round a layman unless you have vast legal knowledge
thats why they cost so much
8 years to pass the bar isnt for nothing i'm afraid
when it comes to child custody, i wouldnt leave anything to chance