Frequently Asked Questions

All questions and requests for information about Access Employment Network can be directed to our main office in California:

  1. What is the Ticket to Work & Self Sufficiency Program?
  2. Do I have to participate in the Ticket Program if I have a Ticket?
  3. What's the benefit to me if I sign up for the Ticket program?
  4. Does it matter if I work full-time or part-time?
  5. What kind of jobs do you find for people?
  6. What if I go back to work and then lose my job or get sick?
  7. Aside from filling out the form to receive payment, do I need to provide any additional information or proof?
  8. If I go back to work, will SSA believe I’ve medically improved and terminate my benefits?
  9. Do you offer cash back or incentives?
  10. What if I'm signed up with another Employment Network, and I want to switch?

1. What is the Ticket to Work & Self Sufficiency Program?

It’s an employment program for people with disabilities who are interested in going to work. The Ticket Program is part of the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Improvement Act of 1999. The goal of the Ticket program is to increase opportunities and choice for Social Security disability beneficiaries to obtain employment, vocational rehabilitation (VR), and other support services from public and private providers, employers, and other organizations.

Under the Ticket Program, the Social Security Administration (SSA) provides disability beneficiaries with a Ticket they may use to obtain the services and jobs they need from a group of organizations called Employment Networks (ENs). There are more than 11 million Ticket-holders nationwide who are eligible for the program or are already working.

You can visit the Ticket to Work website for more information.

2. Do I have to participate in the Ticket Program if I have a Ticket?

No. The Ticket Program is flexible and voluntary. Beneficiaries receiving Tickets can contact one or more ENs to discuss services. Once an agreement is made between you and the EN, you and the EN work together to develop a work plan to assist you in reaching your employment goal.

3. What's the benefit to me if I sign up for the Ticket program?

Aside from the opportunity to work, here are the top three benefits of signing up for the Ticket program:

  • A trial work period where you keep your checks while working.(SSDI beneficiaries)
  • Medical reviews will be WAIVED while participating in the Ticket to Work!
  • You can keep your Medicare or Medicaid benefits after cash benefits end due to work or earnings.

4. Does it matter if I work full-time or part-time?

Not really. During your trial work period you can earn or work as much as you are able. Once you have finished this period, then your cash benefits can be affected by your monthly earnings if you earn over $1000.00 a month. (2011 SGA)

5. What kind of jobs do you find for people?

We help you find the type of job that fits your skills and abilities. Before starting your job search, you will be professionally evaluated to make sure that we are looking in the right direction

6. What if I go back to work and then lose my job or get sick?

There is no penalty for trying to return to work. If you try working and then find out that returning to work is not right for you, your cash benefits can be reinstated without any difficulty or questions during the expedited reinstatement period. (36 months after completing the nine month trial work period). Ticket-holders can also retain their Medicare benefits for 8 ½ years after starting back to work, and do not have to worry about changing healthcare providers or obtaining healthcare coverage through their employer.

7. Aside from telling you I'm working, do I need to provide any additional information or proof?

Yes. You will need to provide a photocopy of your pay stubs showing that your gross earnings were $720 or more during your first 9 months of working. These amounts are for 2011, and will change annually. Pay stubs are the preferred form of evidence.

If you don’t have copies of your pay stubs, you can provide an earnings statement signed by your employer containing the pay period dates, gross earnings, and year-to-date earnings. Since your employer may not know you are part of the Ticket program, it's no necessary to disclose why you need the earnings statement.  This is a common request and employers are required by law to provide copies of pay stubs if requested. If you have partial documentation, we will need to explore other options with you. Keep in mind that this may slow down the processing of your 80% Milestone-Outcome payment by 1-2 months.

This documentation is necessary in order to receive your 80% Milestone-Outcome payments.  You can provide it by e-mail, fax or even mail it in. We will then submit that information to SSA for payment.  If you fail to provide us with the necessary documentation, you will unfortunately no longer be eligible for the 20% Milestone-Outcome payment until you do so.  That documentation is key to receiving payment.

8. If I go back to work, even part-time, will SSA believe I’ve medically improved and terminate my benefits?

As long as you have assigned your Ticket and are making progress, according to SSA’s schedule, in the Ticket to Work program, SSA will not initiate a continuing disability review during that time. If you are not making timely progress in the Ticket to Work program according to SSA’s schedule, they may begin a medical review to determine if you are still disabled.

Timely progress, which is reviewed by Maximus, a company helping SSA manage the Ticket Program, is determined by the following schedule:

1st - 12 months (after 12 months of Ticket use)

  • Complete 3 months of work at Trial Work Level (TWL), OR
  • Complete a GED or high school diploma, OR
  • Complete 60% of a full-time course load for an academic year in a college or technical/trade/vocational training program, OR
  • Complete a combination of this work and education requirement

2nd - 12 months (13-24 months of Ticket use)

  • Complete 6 months of work at TWL, OR
  • Complete 75% of a full-time course load for an academic year in a college or technical/trade/vocational training program, OR
  • Complete a combination of this work and education requirement

3rd - 12 months (25-36 months of Ticket use)

  • Complete 9 months or work at Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level, OR
  • Complete an additional full-time academic year of study, OR
  • Complete a 2-year or 4-year college program, OR
  • Complete a 2-year technical/trade/vocational training program, OR
  • Complete a combination of this work and education requirement

4th - 12 months (37-48 months of Ticket use)

  • Complete 9 months of work at Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level, OR
  • Complete an additional academic year of full-time study, OR
  • Complete a combination of this work and education requirement

5th - 12 months (49-60 months of Ticket use)

  • Complete 6 months of work at Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level with no SSDI and/or SSI cash benefits in months worked, OR
  • Complete an additional academic year of full-time study, OR
  • Complete a 4-year degree program

6th - 12 months (61-72 months of Ticket use)

  • Complete 6 months of work at Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level with no SSDI and/or SSI cash benefits in months worked, OR
  • Complete a 4-year degree program

7th - 12 months (73-84 months of Ticket use)

  • Complete 6 months of work at Substantial Gainful Activity (SGA) level with no SSDI and/or SSI cash benefits in months worked *

*The guidelines for any subsequent 12-month Progress Review are the same as for the 7th 12-month Progress Review.

9. Do you offer cash back or incentives?

The assistance we provide is personal and full service. Cash back companies offer limited or no services. We do provide some financial help or cash back incentives on an individual basis.

10. What if I'm signed up with another Employment Network, and I want to switch?

As a Ticket holder, you can choose at any time to seek the services of a different Employment Network.  Depending on the depth of services provided by the previous EN, Maximus may determine that the previous EN is eligible to share in EN payments.  If this is the case, and you switch your Ticket to our Ticket program, we will still pay you 80% of whatever we receive for your Ticket.

If you believe our services are a good match for you, and you'd like to reassign your Ticket, you can contact us via e-mail at: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  for assistance.  We will provide you with the information you need to reassign your Ticket. Once approved, you'll then follow our standard process for enrolling in our services.