Bethany K. Laurence


Bethany Laurence is a Senior Legal Editor at Nolo, where she has worked since 1997. She holds a J.D. from the University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and is a member of the California Bar. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa and Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English from Boston University. 

Disability law. At Nolo, Bethany is the editor for the Disability Law Center and the Social Security and Medicare Center. She edits the books Nolo's Guide to Social Security Disability; The Complete IEP Guide; Social Security, Medicare, and Government Pensions; and Long-Term Care. Bethany is a member of NOSSCR (National Organization of Social Security Claims Representatives).

Business law. Bethany has also combined her legal and financial expertise to edit many Nolo small business books, such as LLC or Corporation and How to Form an LLC, and is the lead editor for Nolo’s online LLC and corporation services. Over the years she has co-written several business books, including Business Buyout Agreements: Plan Now for Retirement, Death, Divorce or Owner Disagreements; Save Your Small Business: 10 Crucial Strategies to Survive Hard Times or Close Down & Move On; and Bankruptcy for Small Business Owners: How to File for Chapter 7. 

Other pursuits. In addition to her work at Nolo, Bethany co-founded several educational nonprofit organizations, including River Montessori Charter School and Red Barn Montessori, and served on their boards of directors. She most recently served on the board of the Magnet Program Foundation of Hillcrest Middle School. Bethany has also volunteered her time at a disability law clinic in the Tenderloin district of San Francisco.  

Originally from Rhode Island, Bethany enjoys reading and hiking in the redwoods of Northern California.

Articles By Bethany K. Laurence

Social Security Survivor Benefits: Eligibility and Filing
If a disabled person who was receiving SSDI dies, the money that they were receiving can potentially go to his or her dependents.
What Do I Need From My Doctor to File for Disability Benefits?
The right medical records and statement from your doctor will go a long way in getting approved for disability benefits.
Do I Need a Lawyer for a Disability Reconsideration or Appeal?
Learn about the benefits of hiring a legal representative when attempting to have your denial of disability benefits reconsidered and when a lawyer is advisable.
Calculating Your Social Security Disability Payment
Your monthly disability payment is based on your average lifetime earnings before you became disabled. The severity or type of disability does not factor in, although payments from other sources can.
Can You Get Social Security Disability Benefits for Celiac Disease?
If your condition is severe enough, or combined with impairments caused by other illnesses, you may get Social Security Disability benefits for celiac disease.
Can I Get Disability Benefits for Alcoholism?
You can no longer win Social Security disability by claiming alcoholism as an impairment, but many alcoholics suffer from other disabling conditions that may qualify.
What Happens If I Get an Overpayment of Social Security Disability?
There are several reasons you might receive an overpayment from Social Security. Here's how to avoid trouble.
How Long Do Social Security Disability Benefits Last?
Assuming your disability doesn't improve and you remain unable to work, your benefits should last until you reach retirement age, at which point you'll switch over to retirement benefits.
Can You Get Disability for Hearing Loss or Deafness?
Deaf applicants, or those with profound hearing loss, should be able to qualify for disability benefits—either by meeting the SSA's listing, or through a medical-vocational allowance. Here is how it works.
Can You Get Social Security Disability for Depression?
Social Security has a list of criteria you must fulfill to qualify for disability benefits for depression.