Disability Programs (ODSP and CPP)
Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)
We assist clients who apply for disability benefits under the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) and/or the Canada Pension Plan (CPP).
ODSP is a provincial program designed to help people with disabilities who are in financial need pay for living expenses, like food and housing. It can also provide support in finding a job (Employment Support). To be eligible you have to be:
- 18 years of age or older, live in Ontario and be in financial need
- have a substantial physical or mental disability that is expected to last a year or more
- that makes it hard for you to care for yourself, take part in community life or work.
Our Clinic provides representation and summary advice in regards to all aspects of ODSP.
If your application for ODSP benefits has been turned down we can assist you in appealing this decision. In some cases we will represent you at your hearing before the Social Benefits Tribunal.
If your ODSP benefits are reduced, cancelled and/or suspended we can assist you with challenging this decision.
Please contact us immediately if your application has been denied or if your benefits have been altered in any way. A decision from ODSP has to be challenged within 30 days or your may lose your right to appeal.
You can obtain further general legal information about your rights and obligations under ODSP by accessing the Your Legal Rights website.
Canada Pension Plan (CPP)
CPP will pay benefits to those who have paid enough contributions into the Plan and who then become “eligible”. You and your dependents can become eligible for various reasons, such as:
- you have turned 60 or 65 years of age (retirement pension)
- you are unable to work because of a disability (disability benefits)
- your spouse or partner has died (survivor benefits)
Our Clinic offers information, advice and representation about denials of CPP benefits. We most frequently give advice to people who have been denied the CPP Disability benefit.
CPP Disability Benefits
CPP disability benefits are paid to persons who have made sufficient contributions to CPP and who have a severe and prolonged disability. The disability must prevent the person from working at any job that is “substantially gainful’.
The medical test for qualifying for CPP is higher than for ODSP. However, CPP disability benefits can be paid to an individual (and dependents) regardless of the amount of your income.
If your application for CPP disability benefits is denied, you should contact us immediately. You generally have 90 days from the date of any decision to appeal.
We can assist with appealing any decision and we may be able to represent you at your appeal hearing.
Depending on your financial situation, you may be eligible for ODSP benefits as well as CPP disability benefits. You can contact our office to determine if you should apply for ODSP.
You can obtain further general legal information about your rights and obligations under CPP by accessing the Your Legal Rights website