Disability Benefit Specialist

County of Door | Sturgeon Bay, WI

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Posted Date 11/16/2022

This position is responsible for providing information and assistance, counseling, consultation and representation to all county residents between the ages of 17 1/2 and 59, regarding public benefits and eligibility requirements of programs available to them. Services provided will meet all the State Department of Health Services’ requirements as contained in the Disability Benefit Specialist Program Policies and Procedures and the ADRC Scope of Services – Disability Benefit Specialist documents. Regular attendance and punctuality along with being prepared to commence work at designated work locations, on the assigned or scheduled days and hours is expected. Responsible for providing truthful and accurate written and verbal communications.


Essential Job Functions

  1. Provides accurate information on a comprehensive array of comprehensive of private and government benefits and programs. 
  2. Offers technical assistance about how to access such benefits and information regarding the responsibilities of program participants. 
  3. Assists potential applicants of private and governmental benefits, including but not limited to Medicaid, Medicare, benefits administered by the Social Security Administration, FoodShare, Family Care, IRIS and gather verifying information, both financial and non-financial. 
  4. Provides information on rights and grievances and appeal processes. 
  5. Provides advice and assistance in preparing and filing grievances and appeals. 
  6. Makes appropriate referrals for employment and other disability-related counseling and services (e.g., Independent Living Centers, Work Incentive Benefit Specialists, Benefits Planning Assistance and Outreach, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and Disability Rights Wisconsin).
  7. Assists children and young adults with disabilities beginning at age 17 ½ years with the transition to and/or application process for adult benefits.
  8. Consults with legal back-up personnel to the Disability Benefit Specialist (DBS) program to determine appropriate interpretation of law or regulation and appropriate action to assist in resolution of concerns.
  9. Initiates investigations to gather needed factual information to pursue advocacy duties.
  10. Provides representation, as needed and appropriate, for adults with physical disabilities, intellectual/developmental disabilities, mental illness and/or substance use disorders in administrative hearings and other formal or informal grievance steps.
  11. Refers to DBS program attorneys for consideration of representation in administrative hearings and other formal or informal grievance steps. 
  12. Obtains informed consent before disclosing information about a client, unless required by law.
  13. Completes required client tracking reporting and documentation in a timely and accurate manner.
  14. Maintains timely and thorough confidential documentation on all cases.
  15. Required to attend, complete necessary training prerequisites and participate in initial and ongoing trainings conducted by the Disability           Rights Wisconsin (DRW) and the Wisconsin Disability Benefits Network (WDBN), including updates and discussion of intricate aspects of laws and regulations.
  16. Must attend required continuing education courses in order to meet minimum performance standards.


General Job Functions

  1. Works alongside the ADRC Director and Assistant Director to maintain and continue a public relations program, including but not limited to public speaking, development of informational materials, and media releases.
  2. Participates in staff meetings and appropriate training and law updates.
  3. Complies with applicable federal and state laws, administrative rules, established agency procedures and accepted professional standards.

Training and Experience

  1. Graduate of an accredited college or university with a bachelor’s degree in Human Services or related field.
  2. One (1) or more years of appropriate and relevant work experience.
  3. Working knowledge of computers, computer programs, typing and data entry.
  4. Current valid driver’s license required and unlimited access to reliable transportation required. 

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities Required 

  1. Ability to master a working knowledge of complicated material on benefits related to supporting individuals living with a disability, while working with considerable autonomy.
  2. Ability to exercise independent judgment on sensitive subjects using privileged, confidential information, with a high level of responsibility, as the results that are achieved are highly consequential to the well-being of their vulnerable clients.
  3. Ability to use effective interviewing techniques to obtain information relevant to the client’s legal issues.
  4. Ability to work independently and to seek consultation from Disability Rights Wisconsin supervising attorney on a regular basis for technical case assistance.
  5. Ability to conduct public presentations effectively.
  6. Ability to proficiently use a computer and related office equipment, demonstrating familiarity with required software and database programs.
  7. Demonstrated skill in solid written and oral communications to convey complicated legal concepts with such entities as governmental bodies, insurance companies, medical providers, decision-makers such as administrative law judges and hearing examiners, as well as many older people and their families.
  8. Excellent public relations skills with specialized training on the characteristics of working with people with disabilities.
  9. Ability to use tact and courtesy in maintaining an effective working relationship with department employees, county supervisors, county officials, and general public. 
  10. Ability to read, comprehend, and communicate, both verbally and in writing.
Social Work/Human Services

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