Welcome

SAMHSA's SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery Technical Assistance (SOAR TA) Center is funded by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA)

The goals of the SOAR program speak directly to one of SAMHSA’s Strategic Initiatives- Recovery Supports. SOAR seeks to end homelessness through increased access to SSI/SSDI income supports, directly addressing SAMHSA’s assertion: “To recover, people need a safe stable place to live.” This is essential, and for many persons in recovery accessing benefits is a first step.  But SOAR extends beyond and also encourages employment as a means to increase individual income and promote recovery in line with the SAMHSA assertion that: “to recover, people need meaningful work and the ability to enhance their skills through education.”

SOAR is a national program designed to increase access to the disability income benefit programs administered by the Social Security Administration (SSA) 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. Read more here and watch the video below to see how SOARWorks!

Recent Questions About SOAR

Q: How can you expedite a hearing?
A.
To help expedite a hearing, the applicant or their representative can submit a letter of "dire need" to the hearing office (ODAR). The letter should describe the applicant's conditions, how s/he has worsened since the reconsideration was filed and why s/he will worsen still if s/he is not granted...
Q: What is a SOAR Application?
A.
The SAMHSA SOAR TA Center considers a "SOAR application" to be one in which all (or most) of the SOAR critical components are done. These include serving as the person's representative with the SSA-1696, collecting medical records and writing a Medical Summary Report documenting the person's...
Q: Is there a refresher course for those who already attended an in-person SOAR training?
A.
In many communities SOAR Local Leads and SOAR Trainers will provide one-day SOAR Fundamentals refresher trainings for individuals who have completed the two-day in-person Stepping Stones to Recovery training or the SOAR Online Course. You can contact leads in your state here: http://soarworks...
Q: As the appointed representative, if I am not able to pay for copies of the medical records, can I get them from SSA or DDS?
A.
As the claimant’s representative (using the SSA-1696 Appointment of Representative Form ), you can request a copy of the claimant’s previous and current files, which include the medical records SSA and DDS received with the application. These documents are generally provided on a CD. This is...