News From Terre Haute, Indiana

April 5, 2010

SOCIAL SECURITY: Ticket to Work offers free support services

Brian Hewitt
Special to the Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Millions of disabled and blind Americans receive monthly Social Security or Supplemental Security Income payments. Some receive both. Most also have help in paying medical bills from Medicare or Medicaid.

Many of these individuals would prefer to be working. But taking that leap can be a challenge — especially with the risk of giving up much-needed medical insurance and sustaining disability cash payments.

If you’re in that situation — you want to work but don’t want to risk losing benefits — Social Security has just the ticket for you: the Ticket to Work program.

The Ticket to Work program may be able to help you obtain vocational rehabilitation, training, job referrals, and other employment support services free of charge. 

When you use your Ticket, you can get help finding a job, vocational rehabilitation or other assistance. These services are provided at no cost to you by employment networks, which are private organizations or government agencies that have agreed to work with Social Security to provide employment services and other support to beneficiaries with disabilities and state vocational rehabilitation agencies. The Ticket to Work program gives you the opportunity to choose from a variety of employment networks.

Interested in putting your Ticket to work? Learn more about Ticket to Work and how to get one by calling MAXIMUS, Inc., at 1-866-968-7842 (TTY, 1-866-833-2967). MAXIMUS is a private company working with Social Security. They can answer most of your questions about your Ticket and can give you the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of “employment networks” or the state vocational rehabilitation agency in your area.

In addition to the Ticket to Work program, Social Security has work incentives that help serve as a bridge between disability benefits and financial independence. These work incentives include:

• Cash benefits while you work;

• Medicare or Medicaid while you work; and

• Help with any extra work expenses you may have as a result of your disability.

You can find more information about Social Security and SSI work incentives by visiting The Work Site at www.socialsecurity.gov/work.