Find answers to commonly asked questions about Schedule A for people with disabilities.

Ticket to Work logo and The Seal of the United States Social Security Administration
Ticket to Work logo and The Seal of the United States Social Security Administration
Ticket to Work logo and The Seal of the United States Social Security Administration
Access to Employment Support Services for Social Security Disability Beneficiaries Who Want to Work
 
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Have a Disability? Interested in Federal Employment? Questions and Answers About “Schedule A.”

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Q: What is “Schedule A”?
A: Schedule A gives the federal government permission to hire people with significant disabilities for jobs within the federal government without requiring them to compete against non-disabled jobseekers for those positions. Federal agencies hire Schedule A employees on a probationary basis. This means that Schedule A employees work on trial basis and, at the end of the probationary period, if they have earned positive reviews for their job performance, they may be eligible for conversion to a career-conditional appointment within competitive service.
Q: Do I qualify?
A: If you meet the qualifications of the job that you’re interested in and you have a significant disability that is documented, you can apply for that job under Schedule A. You qualify for Schedule A if you receive state disability benefits, Social Security disability benefits (SSDI or SSI), Veterans Administration (VA) disability benefits or if you received services from your State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) Agency. You also qualify if you had an Individualized Education Plan (IEP) or Section 504 plan in school or require accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Q: How do I document my disability?
A: Get a letter that says that you have a significant disability and that you can perform the essential functions of the job that interests you. You may want to briefly mention the types of reasonable accommodations you would need, but keep the letter simple. Your doctor, other medical professional, licensed VR counselor, or any agency that issues or provides you with disability benefits can write the letter on your behalf. Check out these sample Schedule A letters .
Q: If I apply for a job under Schedule A, will I be guaranteed to get it?
A: Like all jobseekers, you will need to show that your knowledge, skills and abilities make you a great candidate for the job, and that you can do the job successfully. It’s not a guarantee and doing your best is up to you, but Schedule A gives qualified applicants a "foot in the door" to federal employment.
Q: Is there a list of available Schedule A jobs?
A: There is not one specific list. Schedule A eligibility relates to the applicant, not the job. If you are eligible for Schedule A and qualified to apply for a job, you may use your Schedule A status to apply for that position. As for locating open positions, there are many different Federal agencies. Your best bet for locating Federal job openings is to visit USAJOBS, the official website for government employment information. Some federal agencies list jobs on their own websites, rather than on the USAJOBS, so make sure to check out all federal government agency websites too. Finally, don't forget to tell friends, family members, teachers, and even acquaintances about your job search. The more people who know you are looking, the better your chances of finding a job.
Q: What else do I need?
A: Make sure that you have a polished, up-to-date resume that highlights your knowledge, skills, and abilities and lists current references that are familiar with you and your work-related talents. Finally, have your Schedule A letter available, so when the right opportunity comes along, you’re ready!
Q: I found a job that I am qualified for and I want to apply as a Schedule A candidate. What’s the first step?
A: First, contact the person listed on the job posting or vacancy announcement. This person may have different titles, depending on where they work. Sometimes, they're known as a "Hiring Manager," "Disability Program Manager" (DPM) or “Selective Placement Coordinator” (SPC). Other times, they may be part of the agency's "Human Resources" (HR) team. No matter what the person's title is, he or she will be your first point of contact. For help in locating a Schedule A point of contact, you can try searching the Selective Placement Coordinator directory. Keep in mind that due to staffing changes, the directory may not be completely accurate. As a motivated jobseeker, you will want to make sure that your application is not overlooked. You may want to submit it to two places: to USAJOBS and to the individual agency website. In many cases, the hiring manager will ask you to submit your resume and documentation directly to him or her.
Q: What's next in the process?
A: Next, be prepared to wait. The federal hiring process can be complex. You will need to be patient and, at the same time, stay involved in the process and follow up with the federal agency to which you have applied. If you have submitted all of your documentation and have not heard anything after a few weeks, contact the agency to indicate your continued interest and to check on the status of your application. If the agency is interested in you and has a position available, you may be asked to interview. During the interview, demonstrate that you are the best candidate for the job. Be confident but not arrogant. Show how your skills and abilities are a great match for the agency's needs.
Q: I was interviewed and I’m waiting to find out if I got the job. The waiting process is taking a very long time! Is this normal?
A: Yes, most jobs, especially federal ones, involve a waiting period. Be patient, persistent and willing to make the effort to get the job you want. Stay focused and be responsive to the agency. Don't rely on friends and family members to make follow-up contacts for you.
Q: A federal agency offered me the job I wanted! What should I do now?
A: Congratulations! You put a lot of effort into getting the offer. Ask for the offer to be put in writing and for a detailed job description. If you decide to accept the job, make sure you understand the terms of your Schedule A probation and discuss any accommodations you may need to perform your job. Also, check on your salary and benefits. This is especially important if you receive Social Security disability benefits (SSDI or SSI). If you do, it would be a great time to contact the Ticket to Work Help Line at 1-866-968-7842  / 866-833-2967 (TTY) or support@choosework.ssa.gov. The Help Line is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. ET. Trained benefits counselors can explain how work and earnings will impact your cash benefits, your wage reporting responsibilities, how you can keep your Medicaid or Medicare as you transition to financial independence and how the Ticket to Work program and other Social Security Work Incentives can help you as you begin your federal career.

As you explore these resources, keep in mind that hiring policies and procedures change frequently. For the most up-to-date information on Schedule A requirements, contact the Selective Placement Coordinator within the agency that you would like to apply.