DI 60075.010 Who is Eligible to Participate in the Promoting Opportunity Demonstration (POD)
The Office of Research, Demonstration, and Employment Support (ORDES) provided a list of 300,000 Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) and concurrent beneficiaries to Mathematica Policy Research (MPR). The list contains beneficiaries who meet the following criteria:
between the ages of 20 and 62 throughout the duration of the project,
entitled to Title II benefits based on disability,
entitled as a primary beneficiary only (BIC = A)
not participating and have never participated in a prior demonstration project (treatment or control group), and
residing in one of the following 8 sites (catchment areas) according to our records, at the time of selection:
Atlanta Region, Area 1– Alabama
Boston Region, Areas 1 and 3 – Connecticut, Vermont
Chicago Region, Area 3 – Michigan
Dallas Region, Area 3 – Texas
Kansas City Region, Area 2 – Nebraska
Philadelphia Region, Area 3 – Maryland
San Francisco Region, Areas 1 + 7 – California
NOTE: A beneficiary must be entitled to SSDI as an HA only at the time of enrollment. If the beneficiary subsequently becomes dually entitled to another record while participating, the beneficiary will still be eligible for the POD. The dually entitled record will be affected by the POD rules only if the HA record is fully offset.
A. Random assignment process
MPR solicits SSDI and concurrent beneficiaries using the list of 300,000 candidates provided by ORDES. If the beneficiary elects to participate in the demonstration, MPR randomly assigns the beneficiary to one of three groups:
1. Treatment group 1 (non-termination group)
Based on responses to its recruitment packets, MPR randomly assign 5,000 SSDI and concurrent beneficiaries to treatment group 1 (T1) to receive the $1 for $2 offset. A T1 participant whose benefits reduce to zero (full offset) under the offset will have their benefits suspended. They will remain in suspense until earnings change such that the offset does not reduce benefits to zero. Participants in T1 will not have their disability entitlement terminated due to work at any point during POD participation. T1 participants also receive benefits counseling from a work incentive counselor (WIC).
2. Treatment group 2 (termination group)
Based on responses to its recruitment packets, MPR randomly assign 5,000 SSDI and concurrent beneficiaries to treatment group 2 (T2). Participants in T2 receive the same $1 for $2 offset as participants in T1, but if the SSDI benefit is reduced to zero under the offset for 12 consecutive months, we will terminate the participant’s entitlement to SSDI. If a T2 participant reapplies and we award a new period of disability, then the beneficiary is eligible again for the POD offset beginning with their new month of entitlement (MOE). T2 participants also receive benefits counseling from a WIC.
NOTE: Current SSDI rules apply to the reapplication process. The POD rules do not apply.
3. Control group
Based on responses to its recruitment packets, MPR randomly assigns 5,000 SSDI and concurrent beneficiaries to the control group. Members of the control group do not receive the $1 for $2 offset. Their earnings are subject to current SSDI rules. Control group members do not receive POD WIC services.
NOTE: We do not permit changes to an assignment group after assignment.
B. POD beneficiary moves out of the POD catchment area
1. Beneficiary remains in the United States
A POD participant remains eligible for the POD and offset even if the beneficiary no longer resides in one of the eight project catchment areas. If a POD participant moves out of the catchment area or into a different catchment area, Abt will provide the beneficiary with the name and phone number of a new POD WIC and referral information pertinent to the move.
2. Beneficiary leaves the United States
If the beneficiary resides in a foreign country for more than 90 days, the beneficiary will remain a POD participant, with the original start date of participation, but will be ineligible for the $1 for $2 offset while outside the country.
3. Beneficiary returns to the United States
If the beneficiary returns to the United States, the beneficiary can be eligible for the $1 for $2 benefit offset for any remaining months left in the original POD participation period.
NOTE: Follow instructions in DI 60075.030 for beneficiaries not leaving the United States for more than 90 days. Send a high priority MDW to the jurisdictional Processing Center (PC) PITAG (PC1-6) or I&E unit (PC7) when a beneficiary leaves the United States for a period longer than 90 days, and when the beneficiary returns.