In 2017, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits were paid to about 10 million beneficiaries. Many of those beneficiaries may want to return to work at some point, but don’t know where to start. Fortunately, benefits available through the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act of 1999 may help them take those first steps toward independence.
Ticket to Work and Work Incentives
The Social Security Administration (SSA) does not provide the services. Instead, the SSA administers the Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA) program.
Through WIPA, the SSA awards grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements to other organizations that then provide the services to benefit recipients. Community Work Incentives Coordinators (CWIC) work at each WIPA project, offering the following services:
- Counseling disability beneficiaries about benefits available to them;
- Reaching out to SSI and SSDI beneficiaries who may be eligible for federal or state Work Incentives programs;
- Work with other federal, estate, and private groups that also assist people who receive SSI and SSDI.
Service providers include employment networks and state vocational rehabilitation agencies. Participation in a WIPA or Ticket to Work program is free and voluntary.
Eligibility for the Work Incentives Planning and Assistance Program
First, of course, you or a close family member must be receiving SSDI or SSI. However, the beneficiary must also be between age 18 and 64 to participate.
By the way, participants in WIPA typically retain their benefits or may expedite restarting their benefits if they have to quit work due to their disability.
Specific Services for Beneficiaries
People who feel they may be ready and able to work again can choose from some of the following options:
- Free employment services,
- Career counseling,
- Vocational rehabilitation, and
- Job placement and training.
People working with the WIPA program may not only help you prepare for work, but also find work. It’s even possible to start your own business or become self-employed through WIPA.
Do You Need Help with Your Social Security Disability Insurance Claim?
Sometimes you need a lawyer, not a paralegal or advisor. Your case receives the attention and care of experienced Social Security Disability attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller.
For your free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100 or use our convenient Contact form. We are located in Anaheim, but we assist clients throughout Southern California.