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SOAR Cohort

SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) is a program designed to increase access to SSI/SSDI for eligible adults who are experiencing or at risk of homelessness and have a mental illness, medical impairment, and/or a co-occurring substance use disorder. Case managers, social workers, and human services employees can train in the SOAR process by completing an online course. 20 CEUs from the NASW are available for those who successfully complete the course. The self-guided SOAR online training takes case managers step-by-step through the SSI/SSDI application process.

As Lake County embraces the SOAR initiative, LCCH is offering the opportunity for interested individuals to join other case managers from the Lake County community in a guided training with technical assistance from our Local SOAR Lead. The SOAR cohort will work through the online training starting on May 18th, and finishing June 29th. The cohort will join in a conference call weekly to have questions answered and share advice.

If you are interested in joining this SOAR cohort, please follow this link for scheduling information and sign-up form.If you are partway through SOAR training or would like to join the cohort after the starting date, you are always welcome to join conference calls.

For any questions about the cohort or scheduling, please contact Sam McDonnell, smcdonnell@lakecountyil.gov or (847) 377-7604.

 

Resources for SOAR-Trained Case Managers

For SOAR-trained case managers and social workers completing SSI&SSDI applications, this page links to some useful resources that can answer questions and provide a refresher on SOAR. Please download the guides and forms below to help your application process!

Share SOAR With Your Colleagues!

SOAR Case Manager Flyer - Use this Word document to spread your capacity to complete SOAR applications with others at your agency, and help them identify a potential SOAR client.

Local SOAR Process

Local Process Steps - This document details the order of steps to complete a SOAR application.

SOAR Application Checklist - A list of the materials included in a complete SOAR packet

Requesting Medical Records

Sample Cover Letter - When faxing medical providers to request records, customize this letter to communicate the purpose of the request and avoid fees.

Spreadsheet of Local Providers' Release of Information forms - To avoid spending time navigating hospital websites. Available in Google Sheets and Excel file.

SSA Forms

Here are example SSA forms with some question-by-question guidance.

When completing the initial SSA packet, remember: Also complete SSA-3369 and SSA-3373! If these forms are not in the initial packet, DDS will request them.

Writing the MSR

MSR Interview Guide - A good MSR starts with good information. Referencing this guide will help to gather all information that could be relevant to an MSR.

Sample MSRs - For inspiration in writing style and content of the MSR. Samples are available for clients from a variety of backgrounds. The SOAR website also offers helpful sample language for Functional Descriptions.

MSR Outline Guide - A detailed description of the kind of content to include of each section of an MSR.

MSR Sections Template - A Word document for you to use when starting the MSR.

It is always to reference SSA's Listings Blue Book to know in exact language what examiners are looking for.

Are you a member of the SOAR Provider Google Group?

Join the hub of SOAR-trained case managers from all kinds of services in Lake County, and stay up-to-date on the latest in Lake County's SOAR initiative!
Click here to join.

Completed a SOAR application? Track your application in OAT!
Get signed up for OAT here!

Income Calculator Tool

Download this Excel form to help you calculate how income from work and other benefits sources (such as VA benefits) effect SSI/SSDI benefit amounts. If a beneficiary is returning to work, this tool can also help them understand how this effects benefits.