Becoming an EN Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Note to keyboard-only users: Use Enter key to open or collapse questions.

A: The Ticket program offers Social Security beneficiaries with disabilities the choices, opportunities and supports needed to find and keep employment, increase their earnings, and reduce their dependence on benefit payments. It is free and voluntary for eligible individuals (Ticketholders) ages 18 through 64 who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and/or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits due to a disability. The program's goal is to ensure that Ticketholders have access to vocational rehabilitation, employment, and other support services from public and private providers and other organizations. Ticketholders may obtain services from employment service providers including State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) agencies and approved Employment Networks (EN). The primary goal of the program is for Ticketholders to become economically self-sufficient and reduce their reliance on public benefits.
A: An EN is an entity approved by Social Security to either provide or coordinate the delivery of services to Ticketholders. The EN can be a single entity, a partnership/alliance (public or private), or a consortium of organizations collaborating to provide services that meet the requirements of the Ticket program. A Ticketholder may assign his or her Ticket to an EN of choice to obtain employment-related services and supports.
A: In June 2018, there were 549 ENs providing employment services to Ticketholders across the country. There were 365 "active" ENs in FY 2017 in that they accepted Tickets, provided services and received Ticket payments. In Fiscal Year 2017, these ENs received a total of $51,398,558 in payments from Social Security. These payments were made on behalf of 16,108 employed Ticketholders.
A: There are many advantages for becoming an EN. There is no fee to apply and the Ticket program provides a proven revenue source that can complement other funding sources and can be easily integrated into current business models serving individuals with disabilities. The funding is discretionary, allowing for great flexibility with how ENs can use the income. Participating in the Ticket program and partnering with a state VR agency can also fund ongoing long-term services and supports for Ticketholders.
A: No. Ticket program funding is performance-based, so ENs receive payments when a Ticketholder achieves a certain level of work and earnings. The value of the Ticket can be significant when employment outcomes are achieved and maintained, potentially adding up to over $28,000 per Ticketholder. Employment service providers, benefits planning organizations and Workforce entities with staff and funding already in place to support job seekers with disabilities are well positioned to sustain initial operations until receiving consistent payments and be financially successful in the Ticket program.
A: ENs receive payments through automated systems put in place by Social Security. A payment may be requested via the online Ticket Portal (with documentation of Ticketholder earnings), or payments may be received automatically through a process called E-PAY, when earnings and other payment criteria are met for any Ticketholders assigned to the EN seeking payment. All payments are deposited electronically in the EN's financial institution. Find out more at the EN Payments page.
A: An Administrative EN is a group of service providers organized under a single EN of Record. The EN of Record completes the EN Request for Application (RFA) and assumes responsibility for ensuring that all requirements in the RFA and Ticket Program Agreement (TPA) are met. The EN of Record typically manages the Ticket program administrative functions while the affiliated partners provide Ticketholder services; however, there are a variety of Administrative EN models. The partners may be other ENs and/or non-ENs qualified to deliver appropriate services. Learn more information at the Administrative EN page.
A: The EN Request for Application (RFA) explains the duties of an EN, requirements for award consideration, and how to apply to become an EN. The application process is streamlined for Workforce entities since they are automatically pre-qualified to become ENs and are not required to submit business plans. More information can be in the EN RFA or on the Workforce page.
A: Entities that wish to become an EN should complete the RFA and submit it to the Social Security Administration based on the guidelines contained on the website. When the application is approved, a Ticket Program Agreement (TPA) will be awarded which is the business agreement between the EN and Social Security. When EN training is completed and all EN employees in positions that will handle Ticketholder Personally Identifiable Information (PII) receive favorable suitability determinations from SSA, the entity can begin operating as an EN and serving Ticketholders.
A: ENs must have the following items with records that match the applicant name listed in the RFA:

Employer Identification Number (EIN): An EIN may be obtained from the Internal Revenue Service by calling 800-829-4933 or online at www.irs.gov.

Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) Number: This 9-digit number is the Federal Government Contractor Identification code. The DUNS number may be obtained free from Dun & Bradstreet by calling 866-705-5711 or online at www.dnb.com.

System for Award Management (SAM) registration: You must have an active registration in SAM and update it annually. Register for free at www.sam.gov with the following:

  • DUNS Number, legal business name, and physical address from your Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) record
  • Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) and Taxpayer Name associated with your TIN
  • Bank account information to set up Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT)
A: Social Security uses many methods to connect beneficiaries with ENs, including webinars, social media, phone campaigns, and various targeted notices and materials. Ticketholders are encouraged to contact the Ticket to Work Help Line toll-free at 866-968-7842, (866-833-2967 TTY). Beneficiaries may also use the Find Help online tool to research or contact a variety of ENs.

The Ticket program also offers a Service Provider Outreach Toolkit to support the outreach and marketing efforts of ENs and VR agencies to promote the program to Ticketholders and disability-focused organizations. The Toolkit includes factsheets, posters, sample press releases, sample program language, videos, program branding and more.

A: To find out more about becoming an EN, email Social Security's EN Service Team (ENST) at ENservice@ssa.gov or call them toll-free at 866-584-5180, (TTY 866-584-5181). The EN Development Team within the Ticket Program Manager (TPM) is also available to answer questions, explain EN service models, and provide step-by-step assistance with the EN application and onboarding process. Contact them at enoperations@yourtickettowork.ssa.gov.