The Social Security Ticket to Work program has been a game changer for many on SSDI, affording them more leeway to earn for themselves while receiving all or partial benefits. For many, this program has revolutionized their lives, but there is often confusion about how the program works. Here is a brief summary of the important aspects of the Ticket to Work Program that Social Security has set up and how it can benefit you if you collect SSDI.

The Goals

The Social Security Ticket to Work helps those who have a disability, but can do some work, get the training and counseling they need to join the workforce as well as give them a “growth” period in their job without sacrificing their benefits. The purpose is to help those with a disability earn what they can for themselves, augment their earnings with SSDI help and give them the proven benefit personally of providing for themselves. A subsidiary benefit is it gives the person with a disability exposure to the workplace, co-workers and customers, which can help them acclimate into society with their disability.

How it Works

A program participant works with an Employment Network (EN) to help define a training and work plan for the participant. This plan includes goals that will be achieved once the participant re-enters the workforce.

Those goals will include achieving a specified earnings level or completing education or training requirements for the job in question. During the first year, benefits are protected in coordination with program plan goals and if the training or employment does not work out, benefits are not affected. If the participant gets in the Ticket to Work Program and is making “timely progress” through the plan, they will not have to go through the SSA Continuing Disability Review process.


Everyone that receives SSDI or SSI benefits and is between the ages of 18 through 64 qualifies for the Ticket to Work Program. Participation in the Program is free and voluntary.

The Ticket to Work program is a great way for someone with a disability to get the education or training they need to reenter the workforce. It also affords a participant the leeway they need to learn a job at their own pace while still receiving the benefits they need.

For additional information and to learn more about the Ticket to Work program Contact DisABLEd Workers today at 877-291-9806.

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