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It can be difficult to navigate Social Security and the Ticket to Work program. Fortunately, there are professionals who can help you get the most out of your benefits.

Free

The Ticket to Work program is both free and voluntary. You’re under no obligation to use it, but it does provide several advantages, which are offered to any adult ages 18 to 64, who receives Social Security disability benefits (SSDI/SSI). There are many different service providers, whether you prefer working with an Employment Network (EN) or a State Vocational Rehabilitation Agency. They provide free support and a variety of services. Ultimately, their goal is to help you find and maintain work. It’s not always an easy or fast process, but it tends to be much easier and more successful when you have people supporting you along the way. Trying to enter the workforce is difficult enough, especially for anyone living with a disability. Having a team to aid and support you along the way can be tremendously helpful.

Selective

There are literally hundreds of service providers and Employment Networks. This may seem a bit overwhelming at first, but you don’t have to stick with the first one you find. Instead, you can check out one or several ENs and service providers before settling on the one that seems best for you.

How do you determine the best one? That’s entirely up to you! Not all ENs and service providers work the same way or provide the same opportunities and benefits. After experiencing their process and learning about their offerings firsthand, you can make an informed choice about which EN or service provider seems like the best fit for you. You are the only person who can make that decision.

Transitioning

Transitioning back into the workforce can be challenging. This is especially true if you’ve been out of work for a while. One of the first steps is typically identifying and assessing your skills and abilities. Often, this is used to help you target jobs that are best suited to your aptitudes. There are many jobs posted daily, and many of them won’t be a proper fit for you and your background. With this process, you can avoid wasting your time by applying to positions that aren’t well-suited to you.

Some Employment Networks have areas where they specialize. This may be an industry or field, such as medicine, technology, or service sectors. Others focus on how you work. They may target virtual or remote positions, which could allow you to work from home. Self-employment may also be an option. Using the assistance of a service provide, you should be able to transition more smoothly and with less frustration.

Handicap businessman sitting with colleague in office

Counseling

Some service provides, including ENs, have professional counselors on staff. These benefits counselors are carefully trained and experienced in assisting you with understanding your benefits and how an increased income and employment will impact them. Understandably, many beneficiaries are concerned about the benefits they receive. They’re often afraid of what may happen to the benefits they rely on once they’re earning a steady income and are working in a full-time position. Fortunately, the counselors are available to explain the details and help you better understand your specific situation and the incentives available to you!

The Ticket to Work program and Social Security may seem a bit confusing at first, but they’re designed to aid and assist you. If you have any questions or would like to learn more about disability benefits and the Ticket to Work program, you should speak with the experienced professionals at DisABLEd Workers.