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NC Department of Health and Human Services
NC Division of Vocational RehabilitationDVRS

VR Employment Services Frequently Asked Questions

Who can I talk to about VR? Any of our VR professionals in offices across North Carolina will be happy to speak with you. Just give them a call. If it’s more comfortable or convenient, you might want to talk first to a school counselor, teacher, doctor or other health professional.

How do I become eligible for services? You may be eligible if (1) you have a physical, psychiatric or intellectual disability that affects your ability to find or keep a job, (2) you require VR services to get ready for, find or maintain employment, or (3) if you have a disability and are receiving SSDI or SSI benefits and you intend to get or keep a job.

How do I get started? With a visit with VR staff, you will learn about the VR program and, if you choose, complete an application. You may be asked to provide income information and medical records, sign a release form so VR can obtain this important information, and allow us to arrange medical, psychological, vocational or other evaluations.

What happens after that? You’ll have your first appointment. A VR staff member will spend time getting to know you and learning about your needs and goals. With your help, your counselor will review your medical information and make a determination on your eligibility, usually within 60 days.

When do VR services start? Once you are determined eligible. You and your counselor will identify your needs, skills, areas of interest, and how you think and learn. You and your counselor will develop an ‘individualized plan of employment’ or IPE. You and your counselor will determine your job goals, the services you’ll need, and the responsibilities each of you will have in helping you reach your career objective.

What services can I expect? VR offers many services at no cost. If needed, these might include: guidance and counseling, testing and evaluation, rehabilitation engineering evaluations, interpreter services, supported employment services, job-seeking skills training and job placement and follow-up.

Will some services cost me or my family? The cost of some services depends on your income — so in some cases that could mean a cost to you. These include: training for job skills; medical or psychiatric treatments; books, maintenance and transportation services while you’re in training; services to family members (such as child care); telecommunication, sensory and other technological aids; and other goods and services. In general, VR funds are not used when there are other resources, such as insurance. Your plan will use all available resources.

Who will provide the services? Your network of service providers can include VR staff, community rehabilitation programs, community colleges and universities, treatment centers, mental health centers and others.

So VR will send me to school? If you require training or education to reach your job goal, VR can assist you with tuition, books, supplies and related costs. The extent of VR financial assistance depends on a number of factors — for example, your income level and availability of financial resources for your educational needs.

Can VR actually help me get a job? Getting a job is the main goal of the partnership between you and VR. The job-seeking process begins with an evaluation of your interests, abilities and aptitudes for different kinds of jobs. Your counselor may provide you information on résumé preparation, interviewing, developing job leads and assistance in locating a job. Your counselor will stay in contact after you start work to help make sure your job is a good match for you.

Can I be eligible if I already have a job?  Yes. If your disability is interfering with your ability to perform your job, VR can assist by assessing the need for accommodations to enable you to retain your current job or by assessing your abilities to perform other types of work.

What about my SSI, SSDI, or Medicaid? Receiving VR services won’t affect these benefits. However, once you go to work, these benefits may be affected. VR staff or your Social Security office can answer your specific questions. Ready NC Connect NC