Frequently Asked Questions

Do you work in my area?
While each state has some differences in the way the laws are implemented, IDEA is a federal law and as such is applicable in every state. I am happy to complete a virtual appointment should you not live within driving distance.

What are your fees?

I do charge for my time, please contact me for current rates and contract information.

Do I need an Advocate or Attorney?
I am a non-attorney advocate and cannot provide legal advice.  If you are wondering whether you need an attorney, it’s not a bad idea to consult an attorney.  Many will do an initial consultation at no charge.

Every situations is unique and as such the question of “advocate or attorney” depends on the specific situation.  But in general here are some guidelines.

  • If I need someone to represent me in a due process hearing?  I would talk with an attorney.  In Texas, advocates may represent families in due process hearings, but I would highly recommend calling an attorney.  Families may also represent themselves in hearings and are allowed to be accompanied by an advocate.
  • If my child has been referred to an expulsion hearing?  Or arrested?  Or the school district has referred my family to CPS?  I would retain an attorney ASAP.  If you need referrals and/or can’t afford an attorney, call or email me for additional resources.
  •  If I need help getting my child evaluated or identified?  Advocate.
  • If I need help understanding evaluations and school records?  Advocate.
  • If I need help developing my child’s program?  Or identifying resources for evaluation or instruction?  I would talk with an advocate first.
  • If I need help persuading the school to pay for an expensive consultant or program?  Talk with an advocate about your specific situation.
  • If I need someone to attend an IEP meeting with me without setting an adversarial tone? Advocate.  A good Advocate will be able to keep emotions in check and speak to the facts.
  •  If I am going to mediation?  A mediation agreement is a legal document, enforceable in court; so if I could afford it, I would bring an attorney to mediation.  If the cost is too high (especially compared with what I am seeking), I would bring an advocate who has experience with mediation.
  • If I’m filing a state complaint?  Advocate or attorney.