Skilled Legal Representation In Social Security And SSI Disability Appeals

Photo of Richard A. Gutstadt

Richard A. Gutstadt

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Practice Areas:

  • Social Security Disability (SSDI/SSI) Claims
  • Social Security Disability (SSDI/SSI) Appeals
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Claims
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Appeals
  • Medi-Cal


Richard Gutstadt, an Oakland, California attorney, has successfully represented Social Security Disability claimants for over 35 years, winning thousands of cases and appeals. There is no greater professional satisfaction than helping individuals obtain their well-deserved Social Security Disability benefits.

In his 35 years of legal representation, Mr. Gutstadt has won just about every type of disability case one can imagine. It never ceases to amaze Richard, however, how different each case is. Even though medical conditions may carry similar diagnoses, each individual has a different set of circumstances and compelling story to present to Social Security.

Social Security Disability is an all or nothing system. Either you are – or you are not – considered disabled by Social Security. The stakes are high, indeed.

A claimant’s disability need not be ongoing, but must last at least one year. Someone who is disabled for more than one year, but then gets better and can return to work, may be entitled to benefits during the period of disability. This represents a so-called closed period of benefits.

Richard’s philosophy is to develop the strongest possible case before Social Security, generally an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ).

Richard’s strategy is to work hard and build a case with all available medical and other non-medical evidence. Based upon careful preparation, the goal is to convince Social Security that an individual is legally deserving of Social Security Disability benefits.

This Web site is an evolving entity. Please visit various components and learn more about Richard and the Social Security Disability process.


  • University of San Francisco School of Law, San Francisco, California
    • Doctor of Jurisprudence - 1975
  • Stanford University, Stanford, California
    • Bachelor of Arts - 1971

Bar Admission:

  • California, 1975

Fraternities Or Sororities:

  • Alpha Sigma Phi

Professional Associations:

  • West's Social Security Advisory Service, Member, Editorial Advisory Board, 1984
  • American Red Cross, East Bay Chapter Chairman, 1988 to 1989
  • Social Security Advisory Service, Co-Author, 1986 to 1999