About Disability Specialists

Nestled among the pine forests of Northeastern Minnesota in the town of Cook, Disability Specialists has been serving people applying for Social Security Disability benefits for over 30 years. Our founder, Tom Ehrbright, spent many years as a Social Worker for St. Louis County. Seeing firsthand the hardships that individuals face when applying for Social Security Disability, Tom founded Disability Specialists in 1989 with the goal of helping people obtain the benefits, and stability, that they needed.

In the beginning, Tom worked out of his home. As more employees were hired to help with the expanding caseload, Disability Specialists built our first office building in 2006.  We called that building home until 2011 when our next headquarters was completed on Ashawa Road in Cook. We returned to our original home in 2018 and remain there today. Tom’s commitment to service, and his dedication to his clients continues to this day.

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Our representatives will explain how Social Security’s rules apply to your claim and help you complete all initial paperwork. They will oversee everything that happens throughout your claim and will also appear with you in front of an Administrative Law Judge if necessary.  All of our Representatives have passed the rigorous Social Security exam which allows them to be directly paid by the Social Security Administration.

Bart Paynter, EDPNA

Bart has been working with Disability Specialists since 2011, in total he has been representing clients with Social Security disability claims for many years more. His favorite parts of his work are the incredible team of people he works with and helping his clients feel more hopeful about their future. With a more stable financial footing, they can focus more time and energy on recovery and improving their health. Bart has a bachelor’s degree in Accounting and Spanish Studies. Outside of work he enjoys being outdoors and active. At the end of a busy week, he winds down by watching a movie together with his family. The company of others is a joy in his life.

Lizzbett Miller, EDPNA
Representative, Case Manager

Lizzbett has been working with Disability Specialists since 2014, and as a Representative since 2019. She loves that we are dedicated to serving our clients with respect and empathy through a difficult time in their lives. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Rehabilitation Services.  Away from the office Lizzbett enjoys going for long walks and jogs and spending time with her family.


We offer full service with extensive support at every step of the Social Security disability process. Our highly qualified office staff will assist you through many of the processes necessary for a successful claim.