I started practicing law on the Jackson County Courthouse square in 1984 at the age of 24. Since then, I have helped clients from all over Southern Illinois solve their legal problems.

In 1984, I relied on a secretary who typed documents on a simple typewriter. I filed all documents in person or by mail. I communicated with other attorneys and clients with letters and phone calls. I conducted time-consuming legal research in the library, taking notes by hand or occasionally making photo copies.

Joni Beth Bailey Law Firm





Joni Bailey

Now, I use word processing, voice recognition, scanning, and optical character reading software to draft documents. I file documents and exhibits electronically. I communicate with other attorneys, court staff, and clients in a number of new ways, including email, secure document exchange, collaborative work space, and live video conversations. I conduct legal research and attend continuing legal education sessions via the internet.

The change in the technology landscape in the past 30 years has been dramatic, but my professional response when entrusted with a legal matter has not changed:

  • I have compassion for each client’s particular set of circumstances–I will listen carefully in order to understand what he or she needs.
  • I am dedicated to each client—I will work earnestly to protect his or her interests and to help him or her understand the legal issues and process.
  • I respect each client’s unique needs, financial state, education, personal history, and concerns– I will provide individualized services.

My mission is to provide my clients with the best of both worlds: modern technology and legal resources combined with decades of experience and old-fashioned ethics and values.

Beginning in 2001, I focused my practice on representation of claimants seeking Social Security Disability Insurance benefits. Since then, I have helped hundreds of families regain financial security through the award of benefits after a disabling illness or injury.

Over the years, I found that many of my clients needed advice and assistance with personal legal matters such as estate planning, family business succession planning, elder planning, guardianship, and administration of estates, but they often did not have an attorney to handle those matters. Quite often, I watched as clients failed to take steps to protect their independence or assets because they were intimidated by the process of finding an attorney, describing their needs, and arriving at a solution.

In response to that need, in 2014, I decided to broaden my practice to offer those services again. Because many of the laws have changed over the past decade, I invested in a sabbatical year and devoted approximately half of my professional time to networking, practice development, personal development, and continuing education.

On May 15, 2015, my sabbatical year came to an end and I resumed my full time practice enriched, inspired, and refreshed. I am honored to begin my fourth decade of providing legal counsel to residents of Southern Illinois.

Schedule a Telephone Consultation

The Bailey Law Office offers free, no-obligation telephone evaluations for Social Security Disability Insurance claims.  No matter where you are in the claims process, we can look at your work history, medical history, and current medical problems, then tell you how likely your claim is to be approved.