FAQS FOR PROSPECTIVE CLIENTS
What is the Ticket to Work program?
The Ticket to Work program is an employment program designed to decrease concerns about losing health care coverage or income from benefits by returning to work and to increase opportunities and choices for Social Security Disabilities beneficiaries to obtain employment from public and private providers, employers and other organizations.
Do I qualify for the Ticket to Work program?
If you are age 18 through 64 and receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits, then you qualify.
Does it cost anything to participate in the Ticket Program?
No. This is a free and voluntary program for people receiving Social Security disability benefits.
What is a Ticket?
Tickets are administered to eligible individuals who are receiving cash benefits under the Social Security Income or Social Security
Disability Insurance programs.
The tickets are assigned to approved service providers called Employment Network in order to obtain services.
Tickets allow benefit recipients to access vocational training, education, job placement services, and other supports to help them reach their employment goals.
How do I get a Ticket?
When a person is determined to be eligible for Supplemental Security Income or Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, they also receive a paper Ticket in the mail along with a letter explaining the program.
If you receive these benefits, but did not receive, or do not have your ticket, contact the Ticket to Work hotline at 866-968-7842 to get a replacement ticket.
Is it Necessary to Have a Paper Ticket?
No, the Social Security Administration (SSA) recently stopped mailing paper Tickets to your home. At this time, a “Ticket” is considered to be a symbolic document. You can verify whether or not you have a useable “Ticket” by calling 1-866-968-7842 or by contacting Worknet at 866 872 1743.
Should I Re-Assign My Ticket to an Employment Network After I Close My Case with the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR)?
Yes! After your Vocational Rehabilitation case is closed, you will have a 90-day grace period before you are subject to Continuing Disability Reviews. If you are working to achieve self-sufficiency, you should re-assign your Ticket to an Employment Network in order to stop future Continuing Disability Reviews and to receive job retention and Work Incentives Counseling services.
How Long is My Ticket Good For?
Most “Tickets” are good for three to five years of follow along services from an Employment Network once employment is achieved. Services received prior to employment are not time limited.
What is an Employment Network? How do I find information about Employment Networks in my area?
Employment Networks are organizations and agencies that provide employment services, vocational rehabilitation services, and other supports to people receiving Social Security disability benefits under the Ticket to Work program.
Worknet is an Employment Network that provides employment services on behalf of the Social Security Administration. Beneficiaries can talk with multiple Employment Networks before assigning the Ticket.
How does the program work?
The Ticket Program allows beneficiaries to receive vocational services and supports at no cost. By receiving these services, beneficiaries are working toward employment, increased self-sufficiency, and greater independence. As beneficiaries achieve certain milestones and outcomes, Social Security compensates the Employment Network for providing service.
Will I lose my Social Security benefits when I participate in the Ticket Program to get vocation services and supports?
Beneficiaries will continue to receive benefits until they begin earning wages or self-employment income above the applicable earnings limit for the Supplemental Security Income or Socials Security Disability Insurance program.
Social Security cannot perform a medical “Continuing Disability Review” to determine if beneficiaries continue to have a disability while participating in the Ticket Program, including receiving services from the State Vocational Rehabilitation agency, and progressing toward your employment goal.
Only earnings can affect benefit eligibility and how much a person can earn before it affects monthly benefits varies for each person. Beneficiaries can also take advantage of Social Security Work Incentives that allow beneficiaries to subtract certain amounts from their gross earnings.
What are Work Incentives?
Work Incentives are Social Security Administration disability program rules that allow you to reduce your countable income so that you can continue to receive a cash benefit while you explore work or look for a job that is right for you. Examples of such Work Incentives include the extension of Medicare and Medicaid coverage while working, Impairment-Related Work Expenses, and Plans for Achieving Self-Support. In addition, if your work attempt is unsuccessful, Social Security has made it easy for you to get back on benefits when and if needed.
What is “Timely Progress”? What Does it Mean for Me if I Use My Ticket?
As long as you are participating in the Ticket to Work Program and are making the expected progress toward your employment goal, the Social Security Administration (SSA) does not perform a medical “Continuing Disability Review” on you. Every 12 months after you assign your Ticket to an EN, the SSA reviews your employment goals and looks at your progress in completing certain educational goal or getting and keeping a job. SSA refers to this as a “Timely Progress Review”.
What Happens if I Fail My “Timely Progress Review” While I Have My Ticket Assigned to an Employment Network (EN)?
The only thing that changes if you have your Ticket assigned and you do not meet “Timely Progress” requirements is the fact that you will then be subject to a Continuing Disability Review at your next scheduled Disability Review date.
Disability review dates are pre-scheduled at the time you are determined eligible for disability benefits and usually occur at 1, 3, 5 or 7 year intervals depending on your type of disability.
Is there someone who can help me understand the disability program rules and Work Incentives?
Benefits and Work Incentives Practitioners certified through the Disability and Employment Institute at Cornell University are available by appointment to answer questions about Work Incentives and how part-time, full-time, or seasonal work would affect your benefits.
How do I activate my Ticket?
Assigning your Ticket to Worknet is an activation of a work partnership. We can help you complete the steps of activating your ticket:
- If you are the beneficiary of Supplemental Security Income or Social Security Disability Insurance, call Maximus (866.968.7842) an organization that will give you information about Employment Networks and services.
- If you choose Worknet as your Employment Network, we will call Maximus to verify your ticket eligibility. We will then work with you to develop a career path plan and send that plan to Maximus.
- Maximus will receive and review the career path plan and assign your ticket to us. Next, you will receive a notification of your Ticket assignment from Social Security.
- Then you can begin implementing your career path plan at Worknet.
For more information about the Ticket to Work program, click here