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Understanding the Ticket to Work program for SSD benefits

Most people in the Houston area who are receiving Social Security disability benefits would love nothing more than to regain the ability to work and to earn a steady income. Some individuals suffer from disabilities, such as paralysis or blindness, that plainly preclude their return to work. Other individuals, however, have conditions whose disabling effects may be reduced or minimized by rehabilitation and counseling.

For this latter group, the Social Security Administration runs a program called Ticket to Work. As its name implies, the program is intended to help certain individuals find work in which their disability is not a total barrier to earning a steady income. Everyone who is age 18 to 64 who is receiving Social Security disability benefits and/or Supplemental Security Income is eligible for the program. Participation is both free and voluntary.

Anyone who wants to participate in the Ticket to Work program should call the Ticket to Work program to verify eligibility. The customer representatives who take these call can provide enrollment information and provide a list of service providers. Basically, the program provides contacts with a large network of employment counselors, rehabilitation specialists and job placement and training specialists. The next step is choosing an Employment Network or using the state sponsored Vocational Rehabilitation program to find the necessary services. In return for the assistance provided by the Social Security Administration, the beneficiary promises to develop and follow a plan that is specifically tailored to enhance the beneficiary's chances of returning to gainful employment. In short, the beneficiary promises to make "timely progress" toward the goals set by the beneficiary and the counselor.

The Ticket to Work program offers many different benefits, including employment counselling, physical rehabilitation and finding a job that is compatible with the person's disability. Professional legal guidance is available to those receiving disability benefits who want to learn more about the Ticket to Work program.

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