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What is the Ticket to Work program?

The Social Security Administration (SSA) is charged in part with helping injured workers and other disabled Americans obtain benefits designed to help them remain financially stable despite an inability to work. However, not all recipients of Social Security Disability benefits (SSD) will remain unable to work for the remainder of their lives. Many SSD recipients wish to return to work as soon as they are able. The SSA’s Ticket to Work program helps these individuals achieve that goal.

The Ticket to Work program is aimed at disabled persons aged 18 to 64 who have some capacity to return to work. The SSA understands that not only do disabled individuals often wish to become more financially independent, they also desire to work for work’s sake. Work can be a tremendous source of pride for American adults and disabled persons are no exception to this rule.

When disabled persons are ready to return to work in some capacity, the Ticket to Work program provides qualified applicants with free job referrals, vocational training, employment assistance and other forms of employment-related rehabilitation. These tools help to ensure that disabled persons are successful in their reentrance to the workforce.

When Ticket to Work participants reenter the workforce, their SSD benefits continue without any alterations for nine months. After this trial work period, participants only will experience an alteration in their SSD benefits amount if they earn more than $1,040 per month.

The Ticket to Work program is not a viable option for everyone. But for those SSD benefit recipients who wish to return to work and are able to do so, the program can be an excellent source of support in achieving that goal.

Source: AARP, “Social Security Ticket to Work Program Helps People Get Off Disability,” Stan Hinden, June 13, 2013

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