My son’s case occurred as pretty open/shut in the context of these legal proceedings and how one sues for reimbursement. Well, we all know with this process things sometimes take unexpected turns and having received a deferral in the same year we were trying to get reimbursed we were denied for reasons one could only speculate. In comes Justin Killian from Michelle Siegel's office. I watched in awe as Justin meticulously prepared an appeal and committed to me we would take this to federal court all the way to the top if needed because of this odd ruling. I knew Justin’s passion, expertise and commitment was more tangible than anyone I’ve ever experienced doing their job. Short and sweet Justin is a pit bull- a very smart, methodical, articulate, take no prisoners- kind. I knew without a shadow of a doubt Justin was going to win on appeal and not only was he holding our hand throughout the entire process, he secured us full reimbursement. His knowledge of the law is one aspect of this process....Justin is a stand alone with impeccable soft skills and a passion for doing what is right and stopping at nothing to get what these kids deserve. Michelle Siegel’s culture and commitment to helping families played out in the best outcome even when the odds were against us, I know they were going to stop at nothing to come through for us. And they did. I can honestly say I have never had such a great experience working with and learning from these amazing lawyers. The law Office of Michelle Siegel is a stand alone and when it comes to our children and their education the buck stops here!
We are extremely grateful to Michelle Siegel and her legal team for their support and guidance over the last four years. During our initial meeting, Michelle took the time to really understand our situation, and asked many clarifying questions which really put us at ease. We actually met with a number of other attorneys that specialize in Education law, but after our meeting with Michelle and her team we knew that we found the right person to represent our daughter. Her caring and compassion made us even more confident that we made the right choice. MIchelle and her team are highly organized, follow up on every email and phone call, and explain every step of the process in minute detail. MIchelle and her team helped us to achieve a successful outcome with each of our cases. They really know all the complexities of the NYC Department of Education's policies and procedures. She has been a champion advocate for our daughter's rights to obtain an adequate and appropriate education. Throughout the four years we have been with Michelle we only had to attend one Impartial Hearing with the DOE. Thanks to Michelle we won all our cases and have received full reimbursements. The truth is we don't know where we would be without Michelle Siegel today. It is with great gratitude and confidence that we recommend her.
"My husband is an attorney and I am a social worker. We advocate for people every day. When our own child needed help, we realized that we ourselves needed an advocate for our family. We initially worked with a larger firm but eventually sought more individual attention to meet our child’s specific needs.Someone we greatly respected suggested that we call Michelle. From the first time we met her, we felt sure that she would be honest and transparent with us. Most importantly, we believed that she would fight her hardest to get our child exactly what she needed. Through the past 3 years, the amazing level of care that Michelle and her wonderful team have taken with our case has exceeded our expectations. Michelle’s knowledge, organization and planning have helped give our child the educational experience that has truly meant the difference between success and failure. Michelle and her staff have prepared and guided us every step of the way from submitting the necessary papers each year to getting us our reimbursement in the timeliest manner possible. They are on highly responsive, truly caring and just the absolute best! We can’t recommend Michelle and her practice highly enough."
"I have worked with Michelle for over two years and it has certainly been a pleasure working with her. She knows the intricacies of the NYC Department of Education policies and procedures, and she has been a strong advocate for my daughter's rights to obtain an adequate and appropriate education. She made the whole process very easy for me, and I ended up only needing to attend one meeting with the DOE throughout the two years. Thanks to Michelle and the fabulous settlements she was able to negotiate with the DOE, my daughter finished her junior and senior years of high school at a wonderful private school at virtually no out-of-pocket cost to me. The reimbursements that I have received from the DOE are enough to now fund a substantial part of my daughter's college education. I cannot recommend her strongly enough for anybody who feels that the NYC public school system has not adequately addressed their child's special needs and provided them with a suitable and quality education."
"Michelle has represented me for the last two years in seeking tuition reimbursement for my daughter’s placement in a private school. She is an excellent advocate/attorney and has provided an unparalleled level of support and encouragement throughout the process. The DOE forced us to go to hearing the first year and we won, obtaining 100% tuition and legal fees! This year, Michelle filed our case during the first week of school and obtained 100% tuition reimbursement and fees within the first two months of the school year. She has worked tirelessly on our case, and is incredibly responsive to my emails and phone calls. I will never forget her traveling to my apartment during a snowstorm last year to prepare me for my daughter’s IEP meeting. Her dedication and commitment has been very comforting during this stressful process. I highly recommend Michelle Siegel."
"Our bright, talented but emotionally fragile teenage daughter had stopped attending school altogether. Michelle helped us through every step of the way to secure full DOE funding for a small private school that is now meeting our daughter's needs. Michelle is knowledgeable about the school placement process from A to Z: She provided us with excellent references for psycho-educational testing; met with us regularly and never kept us waiting; returned emails, texts, and phone calls promptly; and coached us through every twist and turn over many months. Just as important, she is warm and compassionate and probably the best cheerleader that overwhelmed parents can hope to meet. We absolutely recommend her services!"
"I can't thank you enough! This was not my first time with this process, but you spent a considerable effort to explain things and answer my questions. Questions sometimes I didn't know I had until you brought them up. You were exceptionally patient with me and fought for a settlement that my family was comfortable with. The way you spoke to me and guided me through the entire case was transparent with a sensitive hand. There are no words to truly describe my gratitude."
"Michelle Siegel is an exceptional lawyer and person. Our son moved from a gifted program to a private special education school. This was an emotional and legal feat. Michelle's expertise, vast knowledge, and efficiency led us to a quick victory obtaining 100% tuition. During this anxious time, Michelle was compassionate, reassuring, yet realistic. She also possesses a wealth of information on special education resources. I would highly recommend Michele Siegel to any potential clients and would welcome the opportunity to share my appreciation."
"We would like to express our sincere gratitude to Michelle Siegel. We could not have navigated the complex special education system without her thorough knowledge and expertise. Michelle provided guidance, support, a thorough understanding of the law and most importantly compassion in working on our case. The system is frustrating and stressful, and Michelle was always available to help us navigate through the process. She is passionate about children's rights for an appropriate education, and with her help, our son is able to attend a school where he is able to flourish, a school that understands his special needs while helping him to become a more confident individual. That is the best gift of all!"
"Michelle Siegel is one of a kind. I never felt like we were just another client to her. She encouraged me to fight for my son's education at a point when I was ready to give up. She's very knowledgeable and keeps you well informed. Knowing that you have an attorney like Michelle in your corner makes what appears to be impossible seem possible. For two years, my husband and I struggled to help our son overcome his academic challenges to no avail. With Michelle's help, our son is now in an educational environment that is better suited to managed his needs. He's more engaged and confident about his ability to learn and we are now able to rest better at night."
"Michelle Siegel helped us to achieve a successful outcome with our case. She is extremely responsive and knowledgeable, and she was always accessible to provide thoughtful guidance and assurance along the way. In addition to being an expert attorney, she is also a warm and wonderful human being. We fully recommend her to any parent facing this ordeal!"
"Michelle is truly amazing and so thankful to have had her support and guidance! We were referred to her by our neuro-psychologist who had just evaluated my son at a point when we were drowning in tears and just looking for things to get better for him at school so he can succeed as easily as his peers. He is a student who has learning issues which went unrecognized by the school even as he struggled daily but seen for so long in the gut of the parents. Michelle pushed me and my husband to be the advocates we needed to be for our son, stand up for him when no one in the school would. She is extremely knowledgeable in the law of board of education and was so responsive whenever we needed her. She truly is compassionate of children's rights within the board of education system. She guided us through communications we had with school, IEP meetings and our impartial hearing. She walked us through all the processes every step of the way. Because of Michelle, we fought for after-school help for my son's reading and we prevailed! It was an emotional rollercoaster but an amazing feeling in the end. We look forward to the start of the 2015-2016 school year, knowing the DOE is acknowledging our son needs help and willing to cover his private afterschool reading help so that it does not pull him away from his time in school when he is learning core content. We highly recommend Michelle Siegel!"
"My wife and I worked closely with Michelle for seven months as our son went through the Turning 5 Process. We consider ourselves very fortunate to have an attorney as intelligent, articulate and compassionate as Michelle. At the very first meeting. Michelle took the time to understand our specific situation, explain the daunting process to us, and empathize with us. Going forward, she was very responsive to our endless questions and provided us with a range of options available to our son. Her counsel did not end with legal matters; rather, she also referred us to an excellent neuropsychologist, discussed different schooling options and connected us with parents who have children in special needs schools, so we could learn more about their institution.Prior to our DOE meeting, she not only thoroughly prepared us, but she also worked with our son's other advocates to make sure we as a team got our son what he needed. Ultimately, we prevailed. While there are many excellent attorneys, we chose Michelle because we knew she would tirelessly advocate for our son as if he was her own child."
"I highly recommend Michelle Siegel to represent you and your child. She just settled our case for 100% reimbursement plus attorneys’ fees. Wecouldn’t be more thrilled. She made it easy for us, guiding us through every step of the way. This was the first time we sued the city. The endless bureaucracy of the Department of Education seemed daunting; however, Michelle led us through the maze with clear, step-by-step instructions. She answered emails on weekends and late at night. No question was too small. She brought a dedication and a winning strategy to our case. I can see why she has a great reputation at our school. I will use her again and recommend her to other families in my community. "
"I have worked with Michelle for over two years and it has certainly been a pleasure working with her. She knows the intracacies of the NYC Department of Education policies and procedures, and she has been a strong advocate for my daughter's rights to obtain an adequate and appropriate education. She made the whole process very easy for me, and I ended up only needing to attend one meeting with the DOE throughout the two years. Thanks to Michelle and the fabulous settlements that she was able to negotiate with the DOE, my daughter finished her junior and senior years of high school at a wonderful private school at virtually no out-of-pocket cost to me. The reimbursements that I have received from the DOE are enough to now fund a substantial part of my daughter's college education. I cannot recommend her strongly enough for anybody who feels that the NYC public school system has not adequately addressed their child's special needs and provided them with a suitable and quality education."
"Michelle helped us when our family was at breaking point and it seemed no school was willing to take a chance on our son. When we found an appropriate private school, she guided us through the funding process and reassured us every step of the way. Now our son is thriving and we received 100% reimbursement. We can highly recommend Michelle’s services and her expertise has proven invaluable to our family."
"I know X is one of the best-known ones, but there are other "super lawyers" you may wish to call. I have consulted with four lawyers regarding placement, and ultimately went with Michelle Siegel. I absolutely *love* this woman. She comes at a cost, as they all do, but she is worth it. Like X, she will consult with you for about an hour, and explain what she is thinking very well. Unlike X, she does not charge for the consultation. Their fee structure is otherwise pretty similar. In my experience, she has been really generous with her time. Once retained, she was available for whatever questions I had, and I had many. She has a child with SN herself, has been through the T5 process herself, and understands the opposing forces that are at play. She was clearly knowledgeable and razor sharp, crystal clear with her instructions, and though we did not need to go to court, I had no doubt that the opposing side would have been on the receiving end of a flaying or two, had we needed to go that route. She was appreciative of my humor (always a bonus), and made me feel understood, appreciated and worked at keeping me positive. I had an absolutely top-notch team; Michelle worked closely with everyone on it to provide a united front, and that was a key element for us. To tie that in to the other thread currently going: X was our neuropsych, and besides all the good things everyone already says about her work, which are true, she is a phenomenal human being. She has stood by us for years, brainstorming with me, coming to IEP meetings, etc. There was a time when I had frankly lost hope that I would be able to help my daughter be in a place right for her; it was X who insisted I not give up, and it was X who recommended Michelle. I hope that you end up not needing the services of a lawyer, that things get resolved satisfactorily for you, but should you need representation, I wholeheartedly recommend Michelle."
"As a parent who went through battles with the DOE for 4 years I'm happy to speak frankly about Michelle Siegel, the attorney who represented me the last two years, one of which, my case went to Federal Court when the DOE appealed our victory. After having experienced Michelle's expertise, knowledge and incredible litigation skills, I would never ever use another attorney when taking on the NYC DOE again. The greatest thing about Michelle is that she communicates with you constantly, every single detail and decision she involves the parent in an understandable discussion. There is NO other special ed attorney in NYC that does that. I've talked to alot of parents who use alot of different special ed attorneys so I feel pretty knowledgeable in the skill level of Michelle, based not only on my own experience, but on the information I've been given by other parents. The biggest complaint from parents is that they never get to see or speak in detail to their attorneys. From the moment Michelle got my case we were in communication constantly benefiting from her expertise and impeccable intuition. Last year when my case went to the federal level, Michelle constantly kept me in the loop and worked tirelessly to ensure my success. Michelle never sent me a form letter to fill in but always worked hand in hand with me and told me EXACTLY what I needed to do. Because she was so hands on, I have no doubt that my cases were built strong from the ground up and did not have the same "pat" appearance that many other cases do. Her litigating skills are supreme. I had the opportunity to see her in action during my hearing and I was awe struck by her strength, knowledge and skill. I never once doubted the hands that I was in and felt totally safe and secure under her guidance. Michelle is exceptionally smart and has an intuition that is flawless. However, the most striking asset is the clear fact that she is the most compassionate attorney I've ever met. She loves her work and our children and she will fight for you like nothing I've ever seen. Michelle Siegel is an expert special education attorney. The entire staff at my son's school were mesmerized by her skill and attention to detail. She stopped at nothing to make sure everyone was clear on exactly what they needed to do. This extra time, attention and detail made a huge difference in my hearing. Michelle prepared every single witness and worked countless hours on behalf of my son. I can't imagine there ever being a question as to who would best represent any parent in this horrifically stressful endeavor. It's a clear choice. You will never, ever regret bringing your most precious asset, your child's education, to Michelle Siegel. Special education law is not cheap but I can assure you that after working with 2 other attorneys, you will never get as much hands on attention from any other attorney as you will with Michelle. Michelle Siegel is hands down worth every single penny. I am personally indebted to her forever. She made the most stressful days of my life as a mother of an autistic child, seamless."
"Choosing Michelle was THE best decision I have made regarding my son's education! Michelle was referred to me through my son's reading specialist and upon meeting her I was 100% certain that I would retain her as our attorney! Michelle has impeccable character and integrity. The special thing about Michelle's approach to her work is that she creates partnerships with her clients and keeps them fully informed throughout the entire process and I always felt like I was a valuable player. Additionally, Michelle was approachable and easily accessible. I always received prompt responses to my emails, voice mails and texts. Choosing a boutique law firm like Michelle's instead of a huge firm was a no brainer to me. I received more time, advocacy, attention to detail and customer service than I ever would anywhere else. Michelle's fierce advocacy on behalf of my son resulted in 100% tuition reimbursement. With great confidence and appreciation I will continue to recommend her services!"
"I cannot tell you how much we, the parents of a special needs private school 4th grader, appreciate Michelle Siegel. We switched from a big law firm and it was the best choice for our family. We did not feel like a priority at our previous firm, things fell through the cracks. Michelle and her office gave us exceptional service, and we are very impressed with her negotiating skills!"
"Michelle was recommended by a colleague who hired Michelle to work on her daughter’s case. We were nervous moving forward about hiring a lawyer and taking a stand against the Board of Education, but after meeting with Michelle, we felt assured that she was the best lawyer to advocate for our son. Michelle is very knowledgeable about the entire process and was a huge help in explaining to us what to expect. Whenever we had questions, she would respond to us right away. Michelle is honest, diligent and she will always have your back. Michelle fought for our son and he is now receiving the services he deserved."
"A public school student struggled in the (D.O.E.) System since seventh grade for many years. Hearing the teachers explaining your child is not focused, unable to keep up with his homework, projects and failing all his tests. As my son entered high school ,same words from his teachers, same frustrations, tutoring after schools and out of pocket tutors, spending time hours, nights, weekends making sure my son try to stay on task, but getting worse. The emotional roller-coaster my son and I encountered daily was very hard. As a mother to see her son frustrations, emotionally devastated knowing he was capable of doing his work, such a gifted child especially as an artist (Drawing & poetry) The mother start researching, making phone calls looking for a better way, better schools for her son. She was recommended to the Law Office of Michelle Siegel. The mother and son first appointment with Michelle was such an emotional relief. Michelle emotional energy brought tears to myself and hope in his, eyes. Michelle was kind, understanding "First" and foremost. This is very important. Michelle gave such wonderful legal advice & our legal rights. Most lawyers target less advice and more Financials when and how to pay "Not Michelle". She's honest direct up front, dedicated hard worker and a butt kicker. She's not giving up. She's not complete until the job is done. She's trustworthy. Michelle explains each step of the way, how, when, what, to expect, she's patience understanding and a very good listener. At first I must admit I had an trust issue, Michelle said PLEASE TRUST ME! with that said, I did. 10th, 11th, & 12th grade Michelle have won all my son cases with D.O.E. My son enter a better school Robert Louis Stevenson graduated with an 3.4 G.P.A.(DOE "He was way below") 6 college's accepted him each colleges with scholarships the college he chose started August 2016 with an $64,000.00 scholarship. As of 09/18/16 my son is doing well, he started a work study group in his dorm every night, he also has an art & poetry group . He loves it. Thanks to Michelle Siegel law office, my name is Charlene Williams the mother of my son. AND I APPROVE THIS MESSAGE!"
"Michelle and her team were not only a well organized, knowledgeable, and result-driven team, they had that special caring component that helps a family plow forward during a very difficult time. All children, whether toddlers or teenagers deserve a fair and appropriate education to help them to navigate school successfully. Michelle put our minds at ease and instilled confidence in us from day one that we would have the DOE provide the services/placement that best suited our child. DOE has agreed to reimburse 100% of the tuition and large percentage of our other fees. The team also provides families with the tools and knowledge to be a part of the team that ultimately achieved our goal. We cannot thank Michelle and her team enough and we highly recommend her services to parents who need an advocate that will surely have their best interests at heart and fight for the services / placement their child is entitled to receive. Best choice we made and we will recommend Michelle to any and all parents in need of a professional to help them obtain results!!!"
"In Michelle Siegel you couldn't ask for a better advocate and support for your child and you in navigating the DOE. Michelle made it possible to provide my child with the educational resources needed. I wholeheartedly recommend her."
"Michelle Siegel Delivers! My relationship with Ms. Siegel began when BOTH my son's psychologist and the admission's advisor at our desired school recommended her. They knew that Ms. Siegel could assess my son's case accurately and then win it. In a warm, caring, thoughtful and efficient first meeting, Ms. Siegel gathered all she needed to say we had very good case. She also knew the lay of the land with New York City schools—especially which one would serve my highly intelligent son with ADHD and an emotional disability. Going forward, Ms. Siegel's caring and efficient team supported me with preparation for IEP Meetings and gathering all the needed documents. Whenever I had a question, I sent an email and got an immediate response. Ms. Siegel referred my son to an excellent psychiatrist who evaluated my son further and continues to give him exceptional care. Ms. Siegel worked diligently, first fighting to get the city to agree to recommend settlement of the case. Then, she fought successfully for payment of all of the tuition! --- And most of legal fees and evaluation fees! Ms. Siegel is a miracle worker! At every stage of the case, I felt that I was in excellent hands. This helped to relieve the anxiety of taking a big risk putting my son in the school he needs, but whose fees are far too high for me to pay. I am more grateful than I can say to Michelle Siegel for her kindness, intelligence and heroic efforts to help my son receive the education he needs. In helping my son, Michelle helped our whole family. Thank you, Michelle!!!"
"I have been working with Michelle Siegel for four years now and can wholeheartedly recommend her services. Ms. Siegel is not only a skilled, efficient, and detail-oriented attorney, she is genuinely caring and makes herself available to address your questions and concerns. Her level of expertise coupled with her sincerity and determination makes Ms. Siegel the obvious choice."
"Michelle Siegel represented our family when we needed help securing funding for our oldest child's education. He was diagnosed with a number of emotional conditions and mental illness, which made participation in an ordinary school setting impossible. On first meeting with Michelle she gently but firmly took us in hand and we knew right away that we had the advocate in her who would make so many of our problems surmountable. Even though she is kind and personable when you meet her, there is no mistaking that there is also an "iron fist inside the velvet glove". We needed someone in our corner going up against the DoE and that is exactly what Michelle does. She successfully walked us step by step through the process, and calmed our anxieties when they arose. We are thankful for Michelle's service to our family and especially to our child who is finishing high school, something that was once uncertain."
"Michelle is passionate about helping families through this convoluted and anxiety-ridden process. She and her team were amazing during our impartial hearing. Her preparation was extremely thorough and detailed which made me feel confident and at ease. The case she presented was clear and persuasive and we ended up winning 100% tuition reimbursement and then some! From the get go, I found Michelle to be approachable, available and easy to talk to. She is extremely experienced and knowledgeable. Her guidance every step of the way was reassuring and invaluable."
"Michelle Siegel's office was a great help to us in placing our daughter in a school that was a key component in meeting her needs. Siegel’s staff treated us professionally with a personal touch that was comforting and full of encouragement. Our daughter was greatly helped by the school she attended, and Michelle Siegel’s office made sure that she was able to get into that school."
"Michelle was able to accomplish what the 2 largest Special Education attorneys in town literally said "could not be done". She won our impartial hearing case: securing funding for our child at a non-public school in a matter of months. She was accessible, available to trouble shoot ideas and took the time to hear our thoughts and explain her strategy. Our son is thriving at his new school. And we have Michelle to thank for it."
"The buck stops here. I am a passionate mom with 2 special needs sons and I know who ‘gets it’ and who doesn’t. I get fired up when someone meets me with the passion for their work like I have for mine. And my work is to advocate for my boys. Michelle meets you with not only her expertise, talent and passion for kids and what they deserve to be fully functional human beings, but also an entire TEAM working toward the same goal. It’s like that one time in your life you were part of a winning team either in sales, sports, or whatever...this feeling is something I seek out in life. People who are goal driven and working toward the same thing. Michelle and her team are Division 1 in this field and coach you the entire time to get your skill set up to par to be a part of this daunting process for YOUR child. If I had an ounce of intellect to focus on a law degree at this point Michelle and her team could inspire anyone to change careers. Get on board. Stop over thinking. Hire this firm....it’s like investing in a gift for your child and unwrapping comfort, trust and commitment for their well-being. We are not alone when working with Michelle. Hire this firm."
"Thank you so very much for all your hard work and dedication! We feel extremely lucky to have found you otherwise none of this would have been possible! Our daughter is a changed person now that she is attending The Smith School and she really enjoys school and is an eager participant. She feels valued and understood. A big thank you to you and your team for making this happen."
"I have never met a more caring attorney in my life. I wish you and your family every blessing you deserve since you do nothing but sacrifice yourself for god's children."
"My family and I couldn't be more grateful to Michelle and her team for helping us navigate the complex world of NYC special education. Michelle really cares about her kids / clients, really knows her law, and gave us confidence at a most difficult and discouraging time in our lives. Fast forward to today, our daughter is thriving at a wonderful, nurturing school that understands her needs and brings out her strengths. Thanks Michelle. We truly couldn't have done it without you. "
"It was an absolute pleasure working with Michelle and her team. She took care of everything leading to the successful resolution of our case. I highly recommend her. "
"Navigating your child's education is perhaps the most important job and biggest responsibility that any parent has. I can say that Michelle Siegel and her team cared about this as much as we did. From my very first phone call I quickly understood that Michelle and team had no intention of letting my son and our family down, and she would be there for every step, question and more. I knew nothing about the process except for "stories" from friends. The clarity and direction, guidance and extension of expertise that Michelle provides is excellent. There was literally no task, question or meeting too big or small for her and her team to provide immediate and definitive answers. She provided us with the confidence, tools and advisement we needed to get our son to the finish line. Her reputation precedes her and we feel fortunate to have had her represent our son."
"My son received his first acceptance last week. He was accepted to the SUNY Purchase screenwriting and playwriting BA program. This for a kid diagnosed with disorder of written expression. Goes to show what a kid given an appropriate education can do. I’ll be eternally grateful for the impact your representation made on my son's life. My son was broken by the public school system that wasn’t willing to diagnose his learning differences. I had nightmares envisioning the life he’d have and wondered if he’d even finish high school. Not only did you give me hope at our first meeting, but after after meticulously going over his transcripts and neuropsych, you were able to deftly recommend a couple of great schools. We went with the one you recommended as the best fit and and I wasn’t surprised that it turned out to be one of the most important life-changing decisions we made. My son went from being broken to being a self-confident and happy young man. He’s vice president of the student council and lead guitarist in the school rock band. In public school, he was happy being a ghostly figure that wasn’t noticed. Now, as a senior he's an outspoken, creative, happy kid who has even made the honor roll. I could go on and on, but suffice it to say that I don’t know where we’d be if not for the support, understanding and smart handling of his case. Thank you Michelle, Analise, Justin, Makeeba and the rest."
"GOD BLESS YOU for your hard work and making my life easier and happier with you as a part of it. I can not describe how I feel, I LOVE YOU to the moon and back!!! I wish you feel EVERY DAY the way I feel NOW, I mean it from the bottom of my heart!"
"Not only did Michelle achieve a successful result, but she is organized, efficient, responsive and professional. It is an absolute pleasure working with an attorney who promptly responds and truly cares. Michelle and her staff are second to none."
"We’re very grateful to Michelle and her team. My son’s academic and emotional needs changed in the course of the academic year and we knew he needed a different setting. It was a very scary decision. Our case would become more complicated and prolonged and the lawyer we had at the time did not allay our fears. However, clinicians working with my son and our own judgment clearly indicated he needed to change schools. We reached out to Michelle and she quickly and objectively assessed our situation. Her through knowledge of the law and experience enabled her to provide us with sound judgment and we prevailed!! She was an excellent advocate - always focused on what my son needed and the evidence supporting it. She was amazing in the trial and I felt thoroughly prepared as a witness. Our son is making wonderful progress at his new school. Michelle goes above and beyond the demands of the job, she cares for her clients and ensures they obtain fair and prompt treatment as entitled to by law. She truly is a super hero for my son. Thank you Michelle!"
"From our initial phone call, I felt completely at ease about the impending process once I spoke with Michelle. Not only was Michelle thoroughly knowledgeable, she had a wonderful demeanor and took the time to explain every step of the way to us. Michelle promptly answered all of our emails and phone calls and kept us updated about our son's case throughout the process. Some of the other lawyers we initially called took days to get back to us if they bothered to call us back. Once we went to hearing, a step that we would not wish on anyone, it was clear that Michelle had done her research, prepared our witnesses well, and put on the strongest case we could. As you might imagine, we had high expectations since this was about the future of our son's education and we cannot have been in better hands. We trusted her implicitly and we cannot recommend her highly enough! In fact when anyone asks us about our impartial hearing process, we tell them that they need to call Michelle if they need a lawyer."
"I want to thank you for your outstanding service. I appreciate your advice and the support you offered during this very difficult time in my son's life. I would not have taken the leap forward had you not reassured me and so I am extraordinarily grateful. My son is thriving and the happiest I've seen him in years. He confessed to me this Monday that he's in disbelief of how content he is as compared to a year ago when life seemed meaningless. What a difference the right environment can make. Thank you."
"Our son floundered in public schools, starting in 4th grade and all through middle school and his freshman year of high school. We didn’t realize he had learning disabilities; teachers focused on his behavior instead—which got worse as he got older and steadily more frustrated. After finally getting him a neuropsychological evaluation, we were advised to look at private schools and referred to Michelle Siegel. Once we were in her hands, a good bit of our anxiety disappeared; she and her team helped us navigate the DOE system every step of the way. They helped us get our son into the best high school for him; understand and meet all the DOE requirements; prepare for DOE meetings, then guide us through the results. They were always prompt in responding to our emails and phone calls and always sympathetic and helpful in getting through what can be an emotional, fraught process. They were extremely effective in getting us reimbursed for the frighteningly high tuition costs; if months went by without any sign of a reimbursement, they immediately followed up with the DOE. Many times in the past three years we have wondered how on earth any family could accomplish any of this on their own. We feel enormous gratitude for what Michelle and her staff have done for our son."
"I want to share my experience with other families as I feel it is the least I could do to pay forward to other families who are struggling with a school setting that is not meeting their child’s needs. No words can express how grateful we are to Michelle Siegel and her team. Our son was diagnosed with NF as a toddler. He attended public school from K-8. He was never excelling but we were told he needed to try harder. When we did not receive a referral for an appropriate setting for our son entering high school, I was referred to Michelle and her team. Our son’s self esteem and academic performance has skyrocketed. While he will continue to face heath related challenges we can sleep at night knowing we found the best academic and social setting available. Michelle’s team cares and knows what they are doing. They are and always will be heroes in our family. "
"Thank you Michelle, I am in tears! Tears of joy and sadness, especially for others who are not as blessed as me to have a such a great lawyer such as yourself that truly cares. There are so many kids that fall through the system. Words can not explain how grateful I am that you were introduced to me."
"If you read no further, I can unequivocally recommend Michelle Siegel to represent you and your child. I only wish I had met her earlier! Michelle was recommended through a learning support network, so it was a blind recommendation for me. I contacted her and we met almost immediately. She put me at ease, said what options we could pursue re: the Department of Education, and said what her rate would be. By this time my mind was made up to hire her, however I did ask why I should hire her over the Big Name Firm? Without maligning anyone else in the industry, she said she would always be the one working on my behalf, that I would have almost 24-7 access to her, and, of course, she was considerably less expensive. Michelle held my hand throughout the process, from keeping records, to reminding me what documents were needed, and finally, through the final negotiation process with the DOE. I was hoping to receive 85% of my child's tuition, but knew that might be high. Michelle was able to negotiate 92% of the year's residential school tuition! In addition to this financial benefit, Michelle is a professional. She is calm, supportive, knowledgeable, experienced and patient. She gently led me through the process, telling me what to make copies of, when to get certain letters from professionals and keeping me up-to-date on a very slow process. Initially I was inclined to go with the BIG Name Firm simply because most parents used a large firm. I am so glad I didn't! I cannot recommend Michelle enough!"
"The gratitude that we have for Michelle Siegel is beyond words. Being parents to an autistic child is perhaps one of the greatest challenges we will ever face. From therapy sessions, to everyday tasks to the battle for a fair and appropriate education, one can easily feel as if their back is against the wall and become overwhelmed. After trying for some time to handle things on our own and getting nowhere, we decided that we needed help and were not realistically able to handle it. Michelle came into our lives like a blessing. I have tears rolling down my face just thinking of our first meeting with her and feeling / knowing that we had someone on our team that would be our voice and would advocate for our son. Michelle got more done in a few weeks / months then we could have even dreamed of. We fought for years and did not even make a dent. Michelle came into the picture and opened doors we never thought possible. Michelle went above and beyond her call of duty. She was always available when we needed her. Any question, doubt, and uncertainty she was there. What she brought to the table was more than a peaceful night’s sleep and peace of mind to us, she fought tooth and nail. We mentioned her name at meetings and everyone would go silent. We mentioned her name on school tours and everyone would respond “Your attorney is Michelle Siegel? Oh don’t worry. You’ll be fine”. She is a sweetheart to the family and a total beast for the Board of Ed. She’s exactly what parents need when facing the challenges of an appropriate school setting. She needs to be cloned and live forever so that she can continue to be a blessing to the endless children and families that need her help. She’s worth every dime and then some."