Protection and Advocacy (P&A) Program
Our P&A Program, known as Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS), serves Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) beneficiaries with disabilities who want to work by helping to remove barriers to employment. Services offered by the PABSS include but are not limited to:
- Securing services from community agencies, including employment networks providing services under the Ticket to Work program;
- Helping people who are entitled to benefits understand work incentives and issues with their disability benefits;
- Protecting beneficiaries’ rights regarding conditions of employment;
- Helping beneficiaries understand and protect their employment rights, responsibilities and reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act and other applicable laws;
- Protecting rights to transportation;
- Protecting access to housing assistance; and
- Obtaining vocational rehabilitation and employment related services and supports.
Social Security Administration (SSA) beneficiaries with disabilities may be eager to work but need someone to help them navigate through an often-confusing web of Employment Networks, Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income beneficiary rules, legal issues, and employment issues.
The Ticket to Work program reflects SSA’s commitment to protecting the rights of people with disabilities to return to work without jeopardizing their government-assisted benefits. Included in the program is a network of Protection & Advocacy projects in all 50 states and U.S. territories. This network of projects, sometimes referred to as Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS), represents the nation’s largest provider of legal advocacy services for individuals with disabilities.
Although PABSS does provide legal assistance, the scope for PABSS advice does not extend beyond disability-related employment issues. PABSS agencies also do not provide direct cash assistance. And, although Protection & Advocacy services are free, P&A providers cannot take on every case.
Areas that PABSS may help you with
Access to and disputes with community service providers
Special education and transition
Disability benefits and work incentives
Rights and conditions of employment
Vocational rehabilitation and preparation
Rights, responsibilities, and reasonable accommodations under the ADA
Wage and hour issues
Assistance removing barriers to a beneficiary’s return-to-work goal
Areas that PABSS may NOT help you with
Issues not related to the employment of the disabled beneficiary
Social Security disability determination
Attempts to obtain guardianship
Property and probate issues
Direct cash assistance