Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS)


Purpose

To provide information, referral and advocacy services to beneficiaries of Social Security Benefits in order to assist those beneficiaries in overcoming barriers to employment.

Eligibility

An individual must be a recipient of Social Security disability benefits, including SSDI, SSI, Medicaid and/or Medicare.

Priorities

Vocational Rehabilitation/Employment Networks (state or private)
Collaborate with professionals to explain how returning to work affects benefits and future planning;

  • Employment Discrimination (includes, but is not limited to discrimination in hiring, promotions, benefits, termination and denials of reasonable accommodations);
  • Transition services from school to work;
  • Post-Secondary education;
  • Supported employment.

Refer Beneficiaries to Benefits Planners to better understand the impact employment would have on their financial status.

  • Provide information on programs, services and supports available;
  • Refer beneficiaries to benefits planners to ensure that impairment-related work expenses and subsidies are calculated in determining benefits;
  • Refer beneficiaries to benefits planners to assist them in understanding their status in TWE (trial work periods) or EPE (extended periods of employment);
  • Refer beneficiaries to benefit planners for assistance writing a PASS plan.

Investigate Complaints and Provide Legal Consultation and Representation Regarding Barriers to Employment.

  • Provide information about work incentives helpful in obtaining meaningful employment;
  • Medicaid/Medicare services (including personal assistant services);Assistive Technology (includes, but not limited to assistive technology, durable medical equipment and van modifications);
  • Housing (when lack of housing is an as obstacle to obtaining, maintaining or regaining employment);
  • Transportation (work-related);
  • Other work-related barriers:

    • Assist beneficiaries in protecting disability information which becomes public through court action;
    • Assist beneficiaries in removing obstacles to licensing or bonding requirements for certain jobs;
    • Assist beneficiaries in restoring/repairing damaged credit which impedes job opportunities;
    • Assist beneficiaries in asserting self advocacy skills to express independence and freedom of choice to parents and guardians;
      Assist beneficiaries in securing independent living services.

Assist in Reducing or Eliminating Unwarranted Obligations to Social Security Resulting from Allegations of Overpayments.

  • Assist beneficiaries in properly and accurately reporting their wages and planning for anticipated overpayments;
  • Assist beneficiaries in preparing to self advocate in meetings with SSA;
  • Assist beneficiaries to identify subsidies, and other work-related costs which could be used to offset their wages;
  • Assist beneficiaries in securing needed accommodations for effective communication.

Information and Referral to other Agencies:  Providing information and technical assistance on work incentives to governmental agencies, employment networks and other service providers, and advocacy organizations.