What is the Ticket to Work program?
Perhaps employment (or lack of employment) should not affect how we see ourselves. Nevertheless, it often does. We all want to have something to contribute to society. We want to feel that we are helping to support our families. As much as possible, we also want to be self-reliant and able to provide for our own financial needs.
The Social Security Administration realizes that all these things are true. It understands that most people who receive Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits would be glad to rejoin the workforce and hold a steady job.
This is one of the reasons that it created the Ticket to Work program. (Another reason, of course, is to avoid having to pay out as much money each year by making people financially independent.)
The Ticket to Work program is intended for individuals age 18 to 64 to explore the possibility of returning to some type of employment. If you are within this age range and are currently receiving SSD benefits, you automatically qualify to participate in the program.
Through the program, you can potentially receive the following at no cost to you:
- Job training
- Vocational rehabilitation
- Referrals to companies that are hiring
If you decide to participate in the Ticket to Work program, you will be allowed to choose from a number of different employment networks that have partnered with the Social Security Administration to provide services. If you want, you can even talk with representatives from the different employment networks to help you determine which one is the best fit for you.
One important thing to remember, however, is that this program may not be right for everyone. An attorney skilled in SSD law can help you understand if gaining a certain job might threaten your eligibility for SSD benefits.