Are you considering applying for Social Security Disability Benefits, but aren’t entirely ready to retire? Find out about the Ticket to Work program and see if this is an option for you. A social security lawyer can help you apply and maximize your benefits.
The Ticket to Work program is a free and voluntary program that is available to recipients of Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. These are people between the ages of 18-64 who are suffering from certain disabilities, such as blindness.
If accepted into the program your eligibility will be verified by the employment provider with whom you choose to work. The application for this program can be tricky, and therefore, it is always a good idea to retain the advice of a social security lawyer before applying.
The main goal of the ‘Ticket to Work’ program is to offer beneficiaries with disabilities an expansion of choices for entering, re-entering, or maintaining employment. Another goal is to increase the financial independence and self-sufficiency of beneficiaries with disabilities. Ultimately, the Social Security Administration hopes to reduce, and possibly eliminate, a person’s reliability on disability benefits.
It’s important to mention that recent changes in the program no longer require participants to use a paper ticket. Eligible beneficiaries sign up with an employer of their choice (as long as the employer is approved for the Ticket to Work program). An example of these providers would be the Employment Network or a Vocational Rehabilitation agency. Either of these employers will coordinate with the applicants and provide the appropriate services to help the applicant find and maintain employment. The services include, but are not limited to, career counselling, vocational rehabilitation, job placement, and ongoing support services.
The primary benefit of the Ticket to Work program is that beneficiaries can get the help they need to safely explore their work options without losing the immediate benefits they need to survive. Other advantages include allowing the beneficiary to return to receiving benefits if they have stopped working, and allowing the beneficiary to receive healthcare benefits.
If you’re interested in applying for this program you will be entitled to receive free assistance from the chosen employment service provider to prepare for, find, and keep a job, while you work towards some means of financial independence. In return for these services, you will promise to the employment agency that you will take specific steps. These steps usually include a promise to: (1) work at a specified earnings level, and/or (2) complete certain educational requirements.
The ‘Ticket To Work’ program is an excellent opportunity to let beneficiaries earn money while they learn to live with their disabilities. Although these services are free, the employment provider will require that the beneficiary maintain certain standards. This lets the employer keep an eye on their payroll expenditure. It’s recommendable to consult with your social security lawyer, who can advise you of what is in your best interest, and help you navigate bureaucratic procedures.
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