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The Ticket to Work and Self-Sufficiency Program
519.1 What is the Ticket to Work and Self-Sufficiency Program?
The Ticket to Work and Self-Sufficiency Program (the Ticket to Work program) is an SSA program designed to give people with disabilities more choices to obtain the vocational rehabilitation, employment, or other support services they need to go to work or to increase their earnings. These services are provided by employment networks, or State vocational rehabilitation agencies. Employment networks are private or public organizations or government agencies that have agreed to work with SSA to provide services to people with disabilities.
519.2 How does the Ticket to Work program work?
The ticket program is voluntary, the beneficiary has the option of choosing to use or not use the ticket. Under the Ticket to Work program, disabled or blind beneficiaries receive a ticket they may use to obtain vocational rehabilitation, employment, or other support services from an employment network or a State vocational rehabilitation agency. The ticket is a document SSA issues to disabled beneficiaries who are eligible to participate in the Ticket to Work program, as evidence of SSA's agreement to pay the employment network or State vocational rehabilitation agency, for providing the services that can help the beneficiary go to work. To use the ticket, the beneficiary should contact an employment network or State vocational rehabilitation agency. The employment network or State vocational rehabilitation agency will then work with the beneficiary to develop a plan outlining the services and supports needed to achieve a vocational goal. Once a beneficiary and employment network or State vocational rehabilitation agency agree to a plan, the ticket will be assigned to the employment network or State vocational rehabilitation agency. The employment network or State vocational rehabilitation agency will provide the services and supports agreed to at no cost to the beneficiary. SSA will pay the employment network or State vocational rehabilitation agency when the beneficiary achieves certain employment-related outcomes. SSA will not conduct a continuing medical disability review while the beneficiary is actively participating in the ticket program.
519.3 Ticket to Work Information
Additional Ticket to Work material including information about the employment networks serving in the beneficiary's geographic area may be obtained from the SSA web site: http://www.ssa.gov/work/ or by calling toll-free at: 1-866-968-7842 (TTY 1-866-833-2967).
519.4 Work Incentives Planning and Assistance and Protection and Advocacy
SSA has established cooperative agreement grants with community-based organizations to provide SSA's beneficiaries with disabilities access to benefits planning and other assistance. These groups are called Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA) organizations. The goal of the WIPA grant program is to provide Social Security beneficiaries with disabilities information they can use to make informed choices about work and the effective use of work incentives. Each WIPA has Community Work Incentive Specialists (CWICs) on staff who provide work incentives planning and assistance, including information on supports provided by SSA, other Federal programs, and State and local programs. These services are free to individuals receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits based on disability. A list of the providers along with contact information can be found at: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/work/ServiceProviders/WIPADirectory.html.
In every state and U.S. Territory, there is a designated agency that protects the rights of individuals with disabilities. SSA provides grant funds to these agencies to administer a Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS) program. These agencies assist beneficiaries with disabilities in obtaining information and advice about receiving vocational rehabilitation and employment services, and provide advocacy or other related services that beneficiaries with disabilities may need to secure or regain gainful employment. These services are also free to individuals receiving SSDI or SSI benefits based on disability or blindness. A list with contact information can be found at: www.socialsecurity.gov/work/ServiceProviders/PADirectory.html.
Last Revised: Jan. 22, 2008
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