Fact Sheet IconThis fact sheet provides things to consider and questions to ask when choosing a Ticket to Work Employment Network.

Choosing the Right Employment Network for You

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Are you ready to explore work?

Through Social Security’s Ticket to Work (Ticket) program, you can receive free support services to help you prepare for, find or maintain employment. Adults 18 through 64 who receive Social Security disability benefits qualify. The Ticket program is voluntary and helps people with disabilities make progress in the workforce while on their way to a good job, good career, and better self- supporting future. It is a good fit for those who want to prepare for long-term success in employment. If you are ready to work, experienced professionals are ready to help you.

Employment Network iconEmployment Networks

ENs offer:

  • Career Planning
  • Job Leads and Job Placement
  • Ongoing Employment Support

Providers known as Employment Networks (ENs) offer a range of support services to help you prepare for, find, or maintain employment. Some ENs serve people with a specific type of disability; others offer certain types of services. Under an arrangement called “Partnership Plus,” you may also receive services from your state Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) agency, find work, and then receive ongoing services from an EN after you are on the job.

You can find providers in your state by using the “Find Help” tool online. Search for ENs by ZIP Code, State or name. The “Find Help” tool can also help you narrow a list of ENs of those most likely to meet your needs by location, services offered, disabilities served, or languages spoken. If you need assistance, contact Ticket to Work Help Line representatives at 1-866-968-7842 or 1-866-833-2967 (TTY), and ask for a list of providers that best meet your needs.

If you are working with your state VR agency, your VR counselor can also help you connect with an EN to provide support services that continue after VR services end.

Questions to help you choose an EN that is right for you:

1. What types of services does the EN provide?

2. Does the EN know about career options for people with disabilities like yours?

3. Does the EN know about the supports and accommodations you need?

4. Does the EN understand your needs?

5. What are the skills of the staff who would be working with you?

6. Has the staff worked with other people who have employment needs like yours?

7. Can the EN provide references from other clients?

The Right EN for You

The right EN will provide you with the services you need to support your work goals. Talk with as many ENs as you like to see what they have to offer. To determine the best match for you, ask questions and compare services among ENs. The information you gather will help you choose the right EN. When you find an EN that is a good match, both you and the EN must agree to work together by creating an Individual Work Plan (IWP). An IWP is like a roadmap to help you reach your employment goals, then your EN will tell Social Security that you are going to work together.

Take the time you need to feel good about the choice you are making. To learn how work can affect your Social Security disability benefits, talk to an EN that serves your area and offers benefits counseling services. Benefits counseling can help you understand the rewards and risks that go with employment. You can also get answers to your questions about Social Security disability benefits and work by calling the Ticket to Work Help Line.

For More Information

If you have questions, or would like to receive a list of ENs, contact the Ticket to Work Help Line at 1-866-968-7842 or 1-866-833-2967 (TTY).