Long-Term Services and Supports Programs

Support for Working

Paid work means more money to pay for the things you need and want, so you can live better. To help you get work, Colorado has programs that can help you find, land, and keep a job. State employment programs can also help you grow into your work and career. And if you start work and your income and resources go up, there is a special Health First Colorado (Medicaid) program that lets you work and keep your health coverage.

Getting into the Workforce

Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR)

The Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) helps people with disabilities train for, find and secure employment. Their services include:

  • Vocational counseling and training
  • Job search, application, and interviewing skills
  • On-the-job coaching
  • Keeping a job
  • Job accommodations
  • Medical or psychological testing
  • Assistive technology evaluations
  • Equipment or therapies to improve physical or cognitive functioning
  • Individual, group, or other types of mental health counseling
  • Home and vehicle modifications for employment-related purposes, and
  • Financial needs assessments.

Most of these services are free or the cost is based on how much you can afford. Anybody who has a disability that is a substantial barrier to employment may qualify for DVR services. Find your local DVR office.

Learn more about DVR in DB101’s Finding the Right Job for You article.

Colorado Workforce Centers

For career counseling and guidance, you can visit a Colorado Workforce Center near you. Workforce Centers provide free services including:

  • Job listings
  • Computer and internet access
  • Career counseling and training for jobseekers

They can also help you use Connecting Colorado to search for jobs through a job database, post your resume, and apply for specific jobs.

Workforce Centers have staff that can help you, or you can explore services on your own. Find a Workforce Center near you.

Learn more about Workforce Centers in DB101’s Finding the Right Job for You article.

Veterans’ Priority of Service

Colorado Workforce Centers give extra priority to veterans, including veterans with disabilities. Many Workforce Centers have veteran employment specialists who provide one-on-one help to eligible veterans. Get more information about Veterans’ Priority.

Keeping Your Health Benefits While You Work

Many people with disabilities choose not to work because they think they will lose health benefits, especially Health First Colorado (Medicaid). However, you can earn and save money and still keep Health First Colorado (Medicaid) through the Health First Colorado Buy-In Program For Working Adults With Disabilities (Medicaid Adult Buy-In).

The Medicaid Adult Buy-In lets you keep your Health First Colorado (Medicaid) benefits while working. The income limit for the Medicaid Adult Buy-In is much higher, there’s no resource limit, and you can get the same coverage as regular Health First Colorado (Medicaid). (Sometimes, the Medicaid Adult Buy-In is called WAwD for short.)

To qualify for the Medicaid Adult Buy-In, you must:

  • Be 16 years old or older
  • Live in Colorado
  • Be a U.S. citizen or a qualified immigrant
  • Be working
  • Have a disability that meets Social Security’s medical standards.
    • Note: For the Medicaid Adult Buy-In, SSA’s disability rules related to income do not apply.
    • Note: If you aren’t sure if your disability qualifies, you can apply and the state will check.
  • Have countable income at or below $5,096 per month for individuals.
    • The Medicaid Adult Buy-In counts your money the same way as SSI does: almost all of your unearned income is counted, but less than half of your earned income is counted. That means you could earn as much as $10,278 per month ($123,330 per year!) and still qualify.
    • Only your income is counted, not the income of other household members.

If you have Medicaid Adult Buy-In coverage, you may have to pay a monthly premium of up to $200 each month (the higher your income, the higher your premium).

Learn more about the Medicaid Adult Buy-In in DB101’s How Health Benefits Work article.

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