What is an EDPNA?
EDPNA stands for eligible for direct pay non-attorney. This designation was created by the Social Security Administration to enable and regulate non-attorney advocates that represent clients before the administration.
How does one become an EDPNA?
An individual with the EDPNA designation has passed a competency test on Social Security rules, laws, and regulations. To maintain an EDPNA designation, an individual must take continuing education courses annually and maintain professional liability insurance.
EDPNA applicants must also pass a background investigation, have no felonies, and meet certain experience and education requirements see: https://secure.cpshr.us/ssa/About.asp
What benefits does the EDPNA designation confer?
The EDPNA designation allows an individual to represent clients in disability cases and be paid a fee directly by Social Security. If you represent a client, have submitted a “representation package” consisting of valid (signed) forms SSA-1696 and an acceptable fee agreement, Social Security can withhold from a client’s back-pay up to 25% of the funds and pay you – the representative a representation fee of up to $7,200.00.
Non-attorney representatives (that are not EDPNA’s) are not eligible for automatic fee withholding.
For more information see: https://secure.cpshr.us/ssa/About.asp
What background or experience does one need to become an EDPNA?
EDPNA’s come from all walks of life. The most common backgrounds for EDPNA’s are: former SSA employees, disability adjudicators, paralegals and people with social work or mental health backgrounds. Check with CPSHR to find out the specific education and experience requirements necessary to become and EDPNA.
Where can I get training to become an EDPNA?
Organizations like NADR.ORG offer training classes and mentoring to help train new advocates to take the EDPNA exam and establish a business.
Dibcase is a cloud based case management solution used by attorneys and EDPNA’s to run their advocacy businesses.