Free Employment Benefit Counselor

Free benefits counselor

If you receive Social Security cash benefits—SSI or SSDI—you may be eligible for free benefits counseling through the Social Security Administration. The Social Security Administration offers two different types of programs that help people with disabilities maintain employment and keep their benefits. These two programs are called WIPA and Ticket to Work. Read below to learn about how WIPA and Ticket to Work can help you in your employment journey.

What is WIPA?

If you are interested in working but are not yet employed, then WIPA may be right for you. WIPA, or Work Incentives Planning and Assistance, helps people with disabilities find and maintain employment through free benefits counseling. Through WIPA, people with disabilities are given free information on how their cash and healthcare benefits might be affected if they find work. The goal of WIPA is to educate people with disabilities that, with the right work incentives, employment can lead them towards financial independence.

WIPA projects can be found all across the United States. To receive contact information for your local WIPA representative, fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/mbi4SwAQMBjhNoFz8

What is a WIPA counselor?

WIPA counselors, or Community Work Incentives Coordinators (CWICs), are the individuals who help people with disabilities find and maintain work. Each WIPA project has WIPA counselors. Once you are determined to be eligible for WIPA, you will be matched with a local WIPA counselor.

Your local WIPA counselor will help you understand how employment may affect your benefits. Your WIPA counselor will also develop the proper work incentives to help you maintain employment, and will coordinate with local agencies that can help pay for any trainings or services necessary for you to return to work.

Who is eligible to be matched with a WIPA counselor?

In order to be eligible for free WIPA counseling, you must be:

  • A recipient of SSI and/or SSDI
  • Over the age of 14 and under the age of 65
  • Currently looking for work and not yet employed

If you have all of the traits above, then you may be eligible for WIPA! To be matched with your local WIPA counselor, fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/mbi4SwAQMBjhNoFz8

What is Ticket to Work?

If you are currently working or about to start a new job, the Ticket to Work program may be right for you! The Ticket to Work program is a free and voluntary program that helps people with disabilities maintain employment and move towards financial independence. Ticket to Work offers people with disabilities free benefits counseling so they can understand how their benefits may be affected by employment through time. Ticket to Work also helps workers with disabilities keep their healthcare benefits while maintaining work. Ultimately, the goal of the Ticket to Work program is to help people with disabilities gain financial independence and fulfillment through work.

There are Ticket to Work program representatives all across the country. To receive the contact information for your local Ticket to Work representative, fill out this short survey: https://forms.gle/xjtoympkjrZCwku5A

What is a Ticket to Work counselor?

Ticket to Work counselors are the individuals who help people with disabilities maintain work and move towards financial independence. Each Ticket to Work program in the United States has Ticket to Work counselors. Once you are determined eligible for Ticket to Work, you will be matched with a Ticket counselor.

Your Ticket to Work counselor will provide you with the support you need to maintain employment. Your Ticket counselor will also help reduce your reliance on cash benefits and increase your overall independence.

Who is eligible to be matched with a Ticket to Work counselor?

In order to be eligible for free Ticket to Work counseling, you must be:

  • A recipient of SSI and/or SSDI
  • Over the age of 18 and under the age of 65
  • Currently employed or about to start work>

If you have all of these traits, you may be eligible for Ticket to Work! To be matched with your  local Ticket provider, fill out this short survey:

https://forms.gle/xjtoympkjrZCwku5A

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SPINALpedia
Spinal Cord Injury
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