Applying for and Receiving Ontario Works

Income

Legislation

This section is an excerpt from the Ontario Works Act, 1997 prescribed by the Province of Ontario.

Ontario Works Act

Eligibility for Income Assistance

7. (3) No person is eligible for income assistance unless, 

(b) the budgetary requirements of the person and any dependants exceed their income and their assets do not exceed the prescribed limits, as provided for in the regulations;

74. (1) The Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations,

1 prescribing the persons to be included in a benefit unit;

2 respecting the determination of budgetary requirements, income and assets and the maximum value of assets permitted;

Ontario Works Regulations

Obligation to Pursue Resources

13. (1) If the administrator is not satisfied that a member of a benefit unit is making reasonable efforts to obtain compensation or realize a financial resource or income that the person may be entitled to or eligible for, the administrator may determine that the person is not eligible for basic financial assistance or reduce the amount of basic financial assistance granted by the amount of the compensation, financial resource or income that in his or her opinion is available or would have been available had reasonable efforts been made to obtain or realize it.

(2) For the purpose of subsection (1),

(a) any compensation or contribution to the support or maintenance of a member of the benefit unit that may result from an undertaking given with respect to that member under the Immigration Act (Canada) or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) is compensation or a financial resource to which the person is entitled;

(b) the proceeds of a loan guaranteed under section 8 of the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Act or of a loan under the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act is a financial resource to which a member of a benefit unit is entitled if the member is in full-time attendance at a post-secondary institution;

(b.1) an Ontario child benefit payment under section 8.6.2 of the Income Tax Act or a payment under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) is a financial resource to which the person is entitled;

(c) a retirement pension under the Canada Pension Plan or the Quebec Pension Plan that is available to a person before the month in which the person attains 65 years of age is not a financial resource to which that person is entitled; and

(d) income support under the Ontario Disability Support Program Act, 1997 that may be available to a person is not a financial resource to which that person is entitled.

Information to be Provided

14. (1) The administrator shall determine that a person is not eligible for income assistance if the person fails to provide the information the administrator requires to determine initial or ongoing eligibility for income assistance, including information with respect to,

(d) the receipt or expected receipt of income or some other financial resource.

Agreements to Reimburse and Assignments

15. (1) If money is due and owing or may become due and owing to a member of a benefit unit that, if received, would be or would have been included as income for the purpose of calculating the income assistance payable for the benefit unit, the administrator may require, as a condition of eligibility for basic financial assistance, that the member of the benefit unit or the person authorized to act for that member agree in writing to reimburse all or any part of the assistance paid when the money becomes payable.

(2) An agreement under subsection (1) may include,

(a) a requirement to reimburse assistance paid from the date of the event giving rise to the money being due and owing or becoming due and owing;

(b) an authorization and direction to the person or agency by whom the money is payable to deduct and pay the money directly to the delivery agent; and

(c) an assignment to the delivery agent of the right to be paid the money.

(3) An authorization and direction and assignment made under this section is irrevocable.

(4) If a person who has made an agreement under subsection (1) receives money to which the agreement applies, the person shall reimburse the delivery agent in accordance with the agreement for basic financial assistance paid since the date of the event giving rise to the money being or becoming due and owing.

(5) If the amount reimbursed is attributable to a number of months, the amount reimbursed for each month shall be the lesser of,

(a) that portion of the amount received that is attributable to that month; and

(b) the amount of basic financial assistance for that month.

(6) The agreement to reimburse, the authorization and direction and the assignment may be retrospective, prospective or both.

(7) Subsection (1) applies with respect to income or capital but does not apply to money that would be exempt as income or assets for the purpose of determining eligibility for basic financial assistance.

(8) A member of a benefit unit is not ineligible for basic financial assistance solely because a person or agency failed to deduct and remit money under an authorization and direction or an assignment made under this section, unless,

(a) the failure to deduct and remit is caused by the member of the benefit unit; or

(b) the member of the benefit unit received the money from the person or agency and failed to remit it to the administrator in accordance with the agreement.

(9) For the purpose of subsection 19 (2) of the Act, the prescribed overpayment amount is the amount that would have been payable to the administrator under an agreement made under subsection (1).

Form, Etc., of Application for Basic Financial Assistance

17. (2) The administrator may require an applicant to provide information necessary to determine and verify the applicant's eligibility for basic financial assistance, including the following information with respect to any member of the benefit unit:

4 Information with respect to the person's income and assets. 

Calculating Income - General Rule

48. (1) Subject to sections 49 to 54, income shall be determined for a month by adding the total amount of all payments of any nature paid to or on behalf of or for the benefit of every member of the benefit unit during the period determined by the Director.

(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), income shall include the monetary value of items and services provided to the members of the benefit unit as well as amounts of income deemed to be available to members of the benefit unit.

(3) A payment to a person made with respect to a number of months shall be applied to those months.

(4) Despite subsection (1), if the budgetary requirements of an applicant or recipient are calculated under subsection 44 (2), income shall include the total amount of all payments of any nature paid to or on behalf of or for the benefit of any dependants of the dependant.

(5) Income as determined under subsections (1) to (4) shall be reduced in accordance with subsection (6) if,

(a) income is being determined for a month in which a recipient's budgetary requirements are reduced in accordance with section 47.2; and

(b) after the reduction described in clause (a), the recipient's budgetary requirements are less than or equal to income as determined under subsections (1) to (4).

(6) The amount of the reduction under subsection (5) shall be calculated in accordance with the following formula:
A = (B - C) + $2.50
where,

A = the reduction in income for the month,
B = income for the month as determined under subsections (1) to (4), and
C = budgetary requirements for the month.


Treatment of Income

49. (1) The following rules apply with respect to the treatment of earnings:

1. The sum of the total amount of gross monthly income from employment, the amounts paid under a training program and net monthly income as determined by the administrator from an interest in or operation of a business shall be reduced by,

(i) the total of all deductions required by law or by the terms of employment that are deductions,

A. from wages, salaries, casual earnings or amounts paid under a training program, and

B. made with respect to income tax, Canada Pension Plan, employment insurance, union dues or pension contributions,

(ii) $200 per adult member of the benefit unit with earnings, which earnings are not otherwise fully exempted by this section,

(iii) 50 per cent of the amount by which the monthly income determined under this paragraph exceeds the total amount of exemptions to which the member of the benefit unit is entitled under subparagraphs i and ii,

(iv) child care expenses actually incurred, and not otherwise reimbursed or subject to reimbursement up to the maximum amounts provided in paragraph 2, for each dependent child and for each child on whose behalf temporary care assistance is provided pursuant to section 57 if,

A. the child care expenses are necessary to permit a recipient or a spouse included in the benefit unit or a dependent adult to be employed or to participate in an employment assistance activity,

B. the child care expenses are not paid to a member of the benefit unit, and

C. the recipient has not received reimbursement for the child care expenses through the Child Care Tax Credit under subsection 8 (15.2) of the Income Tax Act.

1.1. For the purposes of subparagraph 1 iv, payments made under section 8.5 of the Income Tax Act shall not be considered reimbursement for child care expenses actually incurred.

2. The maximum amount of child care expenses permitted for each child,

(i) is the actual amount paid, if those expenses are paid to a person licensed under the Day Nurseries Act, and 

(ii) otherwise is $600.

3. Subject to paragraph 4, a reduction of income under subparagraph 1 ii shall not be included when income is being determined for the purposes of,

(i) determining whether an applicant is eligible for assistance, or

(ii) determining the amount of assistance payable for  the first three months during which an applicant is eligible to receive income assistance.

4. Paragraph 3 does not apply with respect to an application if,

(i) income assistance under the Ontario Works Act, 1997 or income support under the Ontario Disability Support Program Act, 1997 was continuously paid for at least three months to the applicant or to another person on behalf of the applicant,

(ii) that assistance or income support was cancelled,

(iii) the effective date of the cancellation was less than six months before the date of the application, and

(iv) on the effective date of the cancellation, the applicant’s income included income from employment, amounts paid under a training program or income from an interest in or operation of a business.

5. The earnings of any member of the benefit unit who is younger than 18 years of age or the amount paid to such a member under a training program shall not be included in income.

6. The earnings of any adult member of the benefit unit who is attending    secondary school full time or the amount paid to such a member under a training program shall not be included in income.

7. Revoked

8. If a person's normal income is reduced because he or she is engaged in a labour dispute, that person shall be deemed to be in receipt of income from employment equal to the amount being received from that source in the month before that person's income was affected by the dispute.

9. If paragraph 8 applies, strike pay up to the amount deemed as income under that paragraph shall not be included as income.

10. The earnings of, or an amount paid under a training program to, any member of a benefit unit in attendance in a program of study at a post-secondary institution or earned or paid in the 16 weeks preceding attendance shall not be included in income if,

(i) the member of the benefit unit is enrolled in at least 60 per cent of a full-time course load, and

(ii) the member of the benefit unit,

A. is enrolled in a program of study approved under section 7 of Ontario Regulation 268/01 (Ontario Student Loans Made After July 31, 2001) made under the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Act, or

B. is enrolled in a program of study at an institution approved under section 8 of Ontario Regulation 268/01, that prepares the member of the benefit unit for application for registration by a regulated profession named in Schedule 1 to the Fair Access to Regulated Professions Act, 2006 or for application for registration by a health profession named in Schedule 1 to the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991.

11. Subject to paragraph 12, the exemption of earnings or amount paid under a training program under paragraph 10 shall not apply when income is being determined for the purposes of,

(i) determining whether an applicant is eligible for assistance, or

(ii) determining the amount of assistance payable for the first three months during which an applicant is eligible to receive income assistance.

12. Paragraph 11 does not apply with respect to an application if,

(i) income assistance under the Act or income support under the Ontario Disability Support Program Act, 1997 was continuously paid for at least three months to the applicant or to another person on behalf of the applicant,

(ii) that assistance or income support was cancelled,

(iii) the effective date of the cancellation was less than six months before the date of the application, and

(iv) on the effective date of the cancellation, the applicant's income included income from employment or amounts paid under a training program.

13. Revoked.

(2) For the purposes of this section, earnings does not include benefits or payments under any income replacement scheme or program.

(2.1) Revoked

(3) Examples of benefits or payments that are not included in earnings for the purposes of this section include employment insurance benefits and benefits or payments under the Canada Pension Plan and the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997.


Boarder and Rental Income

50. (1) Subject to subsection (2), the following rules apply with respect to the treatment of boarder and rental income:

1. If a member of the benefit unit rents self-contained quarters, land or a garage to another person, 60 per cent of the gross income, as determined by the administrator, received from the rental shall be included as income.

2. If a member of the benefit unit is providing lodging and meals to one or more persons, the amount of income shall be increased by an amount for each person equal to the greater of,

(i) 40 per cent of the amount received from that person, and

(ii) $100.

3. If a member of the benefit unit is providing lodging without meals to one or more persons, the amount of income shall be increased by an amount for each person that is equal to the greater of,

(i) 60 per cent of the amount received from that person, and

(ii) $100.

(2) Boarder or rental income from a person is not included as income if the applicant or recipient or the spouse included in the benefit unit is a parent or grandparent of the person and,

(a) the person is a recipient of basic financial assistance in his or her own right; or

(b) the person is a recipient of income support under the Ontario Disability Support Program Act, 1997 in his or her own right.

Sponsored Immigrants

51. The following rules apply with respect to undertakings given under the Immigration Act (Canada) or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada):

1. If a member of the benefit unit is a person with respect to whom an undertaking has been given under the Immigration Act (Canada) or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) and he or she resides in the dwelling place of the person giving the undertaking or in accommodation owned or controlled in whole or in part by that person, income shall include an amount equal to the greater of,

(i) the amount of all payments available to the member of the benefit unit as determined by the administrator under the undertaking given with respect to him or her, and

(ii) the amount of the budgetary requirements calculated in accordance with section 41 less the applicable amount determined in accordance with the following Table:

Basic Needs Rate Table
No. of dependants other than a spouseDependants
18 years or older
Dependants
0 - 17 years
RecipientRecipient and spouse
0 0 0 $330 $476
1

0

1

1

0

$347

$599

$476

$627

2

0

1

2

2

1

0

$347

$599

$750

$476

$627

$794

For each additional dependant:
add $168 if the dependant is 18 years of age or older,
or $0 if the dependant is 0-17 years of age.
The amount attributable to a dependent child shall be reduced by 50 per cent where budgetary requirements for the child were reduced under section 44.2.

 

2. Revoked

3. The amount calculated under paragraph 1 shall be deemed to be zero if,

i the person giving the undertaking under the Immigration Act (Canada) or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) is himself or herself in receipt of or eligible for social assistance,

ii the person giving the undertaking under the Immigration Act (Canada) or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) is himself or herself in receipt of a payment under Part II of the Old Age Security Act (Canada) or a payment under the Ontario Guaranteed Annual Income Act,

iii the member of the benefit unit establishes to the satisfaction of the administrator that there has been a breakdown in the undertaking by reason of domestic violence,

iv the member of the benefit unit establishes to the satisfaction of the administrator that he or she has a legal obligation to contribute to one or more of the elements of shelter cost set out in paragraphs 1 to 10 of subsection 42 (1) for the dwelling place where the person giving the undertaking under the Immigration Act (Canada) or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) and the member of the benefit unit reside or for the accommodation owned or controlled in whole or in part by the person giving the undertaking where the member of the benefit unit resides, or

v the member of the benefit unit establishes to the satisfaction of the administrator that he or she is required by the person giving the undertaking under the Immigration Act (Canada) or the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) to pay for shelter in order to continue to reside in the dwelling place of that person or in accommodation owned or controlled in whole or in part by that person.

Exemptions - Payments by Ontario

52. (1) The following payments by Ontario shall not be included in income:

1. Assistance under the Act.

2. A payment made under section 49 of the Ontario Disability Support Program Act, 1997 to provide financial assistance for children with severe disabilities.

3. A payment made by a children's aid society on behalf of a child in care under the Child and Family Services Act.

3.1 A payment made by a children's aid society on behalf of a child receiving services under the Child and Family Services Act, if the society has determined that under clause 4 (1) (b) of Ontario Regulation 206/00 (Procedures, Practices and Standards of Service for Child Protection Cases), made under the Child and Family Services Act, that there are reasonable and probable grounds to believe that the child is in need of protection and the child has not been placed in the society's care,

i. by an agreement entered into under subsection 29 (1) of the Child and Family Services Act, or

ii. by an order made under clause 51 (2) (d), paragraph 2, 3 or 4 of subsection 57 (1), subsection 65 (1) or clause 65.2 (1) (c) of the Child and Family Services Act.

3.2 A payment made by a children's aid society on behalf of a child in the custody of a person pursuant to an order made under clause 65.2 (1) (b) of the Child and Family Services Act.

4. A payment received under clause 175 (f) of the Child and Family Services Act.

5. A payment received under subsection 2 (2) of the Developmental Services Act.

6. A payment received under the Ministry of Community and Social Services Act.

7. A payment or refund under section 8 of the Income Tax Act.

8. A payment under subsection 147 (14) of the Workers' Compensation Act, as it read on December 31, 1997.

8.1 Subject to subsection 54 (2), an amount received as compensation for non-economic loss under section 46 of the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997 or section 42 of the Workers' Compensation Act. 

9. A payment received under section 8.5 of the Income Tax Act.

10. An Ontario child benefit payment received under section 8.6.2 of the Income Tax Act.

11. A payment received under section 104.1 of the Taxation Act, 2007 for a senior homeowners' property tax grant.

(2) Revoked.

12. A payment or refund received under any of, 

i. section 99 of the Taxation Act, 2007,

ii. section 100 of the Taxation Act, 2007,

iii. section 101.1 of the Taxation Act, 2007,

iv. section 101.2 of the Taxation Act, 2007, and

v. section 104.11 of the Taxation Act, 2007.

13. An Ontario sales tax transition benefit received under section 104.12 of the Taxation Act, 2007.

14. A payment made in accordance with the Ontario Child Benefit Equivalent Act, 2009.

Exemptions - Payments by Canada

53. The following payments by Canada shall not be included in income:

1. A payment received as a tax credit under section 122.5 of the Income Tax Act (Canada).

2. A payment received under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) in or before June 2004, as reduced by that portion of the payment with respect to dependent children that represents item "C" in the formula set out in subsection (1) of that section.

3. A payment received under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) in or after July 2004 but before July 2005, as reduced by that portion of the payment with respect to dependent children that represents item "C" in the formula set out in subsection (1) of that section, and as increased by the sum of the following amounts:

i. $4.00 for the first dependent child.

ii. $3.41 for the second dependent child.

iii. $3.25 for each additional dependent child.


3.1 A payment received under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) in or after July 2005, but before July 2006, as reduced by that portion of the payment with respect to dependent children that represents item "C" in the formula set out in subsection (1) of that section, and as increased by the sum of the following amounts:

i. $21.58 for the first dependent child.

ii. $2.66 for the second dependent child.

iii. $20.33 for each additional dependent child.

3.2 A payment received under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) in or after July 2006 but before July 2007, as reduced by that portion of the payment with respect to dependent children that represents item "C" in the formula set out in subsection (1) of that section, and as increased by the sum of the following amounts:

i. $40.17 for the first dependent child.

ii. $38.82 for the second dependent child.

iii. $38.41 for each additional dependent child.

3.3 A payment received under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) in or after July 2007, but before July 2008, as reduced by that portion of the payment with respect to dependent children that represents item "C" in the formula set out in subsection (1) of that section, and as increased by the sum of the following amounts:

i. $43.75 for the first dependent child.

ii. $41.99 for the second dependent child.

iii. $41.41 for each additional dependent child.

3.4 A payment received under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) in or after July 2008.

3.5 A payment received as a tax credit under section 122.7 or 122.71 of the Income Tax Act (Canada).

4. A death benefit payment under the Canada Pension Plan.

4.1 An Orphan's Benefit payment under the Canada Pension Plan.

5. A payment received from the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (Canada) or from a band for board and lodging of a student attending a secondary school not on the reserve.

6. A payment received pursuant to the Indian Act (Canada) under a treaty between Her Majesty and a band, other than funds for post-secondary education.

7. A payment made by a band as an incentive bonus for school attendance to any dependant who is attending school.

8. A payment received under Order in Council P.C. 1977-2496 made under section 40 of the Indian Act (Canada).

9. A payment received under the Extraordinary Assistance Plan (Canada).

10. A grant received under the Employment Insurance Act (Canada) and used for the purpose of purchasing a training course approved by the administrator.

11. A Canada Education Savings Grant.

12. A payment received from Human Resources Development Canada under the program called the "Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities", if the payment has been or will be applied to costs incurred or to be incurred as a result of participation in employment-related activities that have been approved by the administrator.

13. A loan, including a forgiven loan, or contribution received from the Residential Rehabilitation Assistance Program authorized by section 51 of the National Housing Act (Canada).

14. A benefit paid under section 4 of the Universal Child Care Benefit Act (Canada).

15. A payment received under the Pre-1986/Post-1990 Hepatitis C Settlement Agreement made as of December 14, 2006 among the Attorney General of Canada and Class Action Representative Plaintiffs, other than a payment for loss of income under section 2.05 of the Agreement, a payment for loss of services under section 2.06 of the Agreement and compensation to dependants under section 4.04 of the Agreement.

16. A payment from a municipality or a Tribal Council, on behalf of the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (Canada), received between October 2005 and September 2006 by an evacuee from that part of the Fort Albany No. 67 Reserve on which members of the Kashechewan First Nation reside.

17. A payment under the Canada Disability Savings Act that is paid into a registered disability savings plan.

Other Exemptions

54. (1) The following shall not be included in income:

1. That portion of a loan, approved by the administrator, that is,

i. applied or will be applied to the operation of a business,

ii. applied on an exceptional basis for medically necessary health related reasons if no other government program is available for the purpose,

iii. guaranteed under section 8 of the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Act or made under the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act and, in either case, received by or on behalf of a student and relating to tuition, other compulsory fees, books, instructional supplies or transportation for the purpose of the definition of "education costs" in subsection 1 (1) of Regulation 774 of the Revised Regulations of Ontario, 1990 (Ontario Student Loans made before August 1, 2001) made under the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Act or for the purpose of section 11 of Ontario Regulation 268/01 (Ontario Student Loans made after July 31, 2001) made under that Act,

iv. guaranteed under section 8 of the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Act or made under the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act, if, in either case, the proceeds are received by or on behalf of a student who is,

A. a part time student,

B. a dependent adult who is not a spouse included in the benefit unit or a sole support student as defined in subsection 1 (1) of Regulation 774 of the Revised Regulations of Ontario, 1990, or

C. a child on whose behalf temporary care assistance is being paid and who is not a sole support student as defined in subsection 1 (1) of Regulation 774 of the Revised Regulations of Ontario, 1990 made under the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities Act,

v. applied or will be applied to the purchase of a motor vehicle required for employment assistance activities or to maintain employment, or

vi. applied or will be applied to the payment of first and last month's rent necessary to secure accommodation for the benefit unit.

vii. applied or will be applied to the purchase of household items necessary for the well-being of one or more members of the benefit unit and approved by the administrator.

2. An award or grant made by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities to a student enrolled in a post-secondary institution.

2.1. The portion of a grant or award, other than an award or grant under paragraph 2, or loan, other than a loan under subparagraphs 1 iii and iv, that is approved by the administrator for training or post-secondary education and that is or will be applied within a reasonable period to the cost of tuition, other compulsory fees, books, instructional supplies and equipment and transportation, if the person for whose benefit the grant, award or loan is provided is attending or will be attending the training or program of study for which it is intended.

3. A bursary received by a full-time student enrolled in a secondary school under paragraph 18 of subsection 8 (1) of the Education Act.

4. Subject to subsection (2) and (4), an amount received as damages or compensation for,

i. pain and suffering as a result of injury to or the death of a member of the benefit unit, or

ii. expenses actually and reasonably incurred or to be incurred as a result of injury to or the death of a member of the benefit unit.

4.1. Subject to subsection (2) an amount received as an award for damages under clause 61 (2) (e) of the Family Law Act to compensate for loss of guidance, care and companionship as a result of death or injury.

5. A payment received under any of the following agreements to which the province of Ontario is a party:

i. The Helpline Reconciliation Model Agreement.

ii. The Multi-Provincial/Territorial Assistance Program Agreement.

iii. The Grandview Agreement.

6. That portion of a payment received from the sale or other disposition of an asset that is applied, or if the administrator approves, will be applied towards,

i. the purchase by a member of the benefit unit of a principal residence used by the benefit unit,

ii. the purchase of any other asset that, in the opinion of the administrator, is necessary for the health or welfare of a member of the benefit unit,

iii. the purchase of or conversion to an asset that is not included as an asset under section 39, or

iv. the purchase of or conversion to an asset that does not result in the recipient exceeding the prescribed limit for assets under section 38.

7. A donation received from a religious, charitable or benevolent organization.

8. Gifts or other voluntary payments up to a maximum of $6,000 for any 12-month period.

9. If a member of a benefit unit is residing in a nursing home, a payment by a relative or friend of the member with respect to special services provided by the operator of the nursing home.

10. A payment received under the Ontario Hepatitis C Assistance Plan.

11. The interest earned from and reinvested into the Registered Education Savings Plan referred to in paragraph 21 of subsection 39 (1).

11.1. A gift or voluntary payment received for the purpose of making a contribution to a Registered Education Savings Plan, if the gift or payment is contributed as soon as practicable to a Registered Education Savings Plan that is exempt under paragraph 21 of subsection 39 (1).

11.2. An Educational Assistance Payment received from a Registered Education Savings Plan as defined in section 146.1 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) that is or will be applied, within a reasonable period, to the cost of tuition, other compulsory fees, books, instructional supplies and equipment, transportation and post-secondary education expenses related to the person's disability, approved by the administrator.

11.3. A payment of contributions from a Registered Education Savings Plan as defined in section 146.1 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) to the subscriber or to the beneficiary if the payment is or will be applied by the beneficiary, within a reasonable period, to the cost of tuition, other compulsory fees, books, instructional supplies and equipment, transportation and post-secondary education expenses related to the person's disability, approved by the administrator.

11.4. A gift or voluntary payment received for the purpose of making a contribution to a registered disability savings plan, if the gift or payment is contributed as soon as practicable into a registered disability savings plan exempt under paragraph 21.1 of subsection 39 (1).

11.5. The interest earned from and reinvested into a registered disability savings plan that is exempt under paragraph 21.1 of subsection 39 (1).

11.6. Payments from a registered disability savings plan that is exempt under paragraph 21.1 of subsection 39 (1).

12. A lump sum payment received under the 1986-1990 Hepatitis C Settlement Agreement made as of June 15, 1999 among the Attorney General of Canada, Her Majesty the Queen in right of Ontario and others, other than a loss of income payment or a loss of support payment.

13. A payment received under the Walkerton Compensation Plan, other than a payment for future lost income.

14. Grants received from the Home and Vehicle Modification Program funded under the Ministry of Community and Social Services Act.

15. Money paid under a contract of insurance for loss of or damage to real or personal property of a member of a benefit unit if the money is applied to or, if the administrator approves, will be applied to,

i. the purchase or repair of an asset that, under section 39, is not included as an asset,

ii. the purchase or repair of any other asset that, in the opinion of the administrator, is necessary for the health or welfare of a member of the benefit unit,

iii. the purchase or repair of an asset that does not result in the recipient exceeding the prescribed limit for assets under section 38,

iv. additional living expenses, including temporary shelter costs, if a peril covered by the contract of insurance makes the recipient's dwelling place used as principal residence unfit for occupancy, or

v. debt obligations of a member of the benefit unit.

16. Payments made by a local Disaster Relief Committee established pursuant to the Ontario Disaster Relief Assistance Program administered by the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing, other than payments for loss of income.

17. An amount received as compensation, other than compensation for loss of income, related to a claim of abuse sustained at an Indian residential school, including compensation received under the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement.

18. A personal credit within the meaning of section 5.07 of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement.

19. A death benefit payment under An Act Respecting the Quebec Pension Plan.

20. Payments that are made pursuant to a court order that are made for and applied to,

(i) expenses for disability related items or services for a member of the benefit unit that are approved by the administrator and that are not and will not be otherwise reimbursed, or

(ii) education or training expenses that are approved by the administrator and that,

A. are incurred with respect to a member of the benefit unit because of that person's disability, and

B. are not and will not be otherwise reimbursed.

21. The value of grants, items or services provided for the purposes of energy efficiency and conservation by gas distribution utilities, local distribution companies, a municipality, the Ontario Power Authority, the Government of Ontario or the Government of Canada.

22. Payments made under the Quest for Gold - Ontario Athlete Assistance Program, administered by the Ministry of Health Promotion.

23. Payments made under the Transplant Patient Expense Reimbursement Program funded by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, if the payments are or will be used, within a reasonable period as determined by the administrator, for the purpose for which they were intended.

24. Payments made by Ontario or Canada pursuant to an aboriginal land claim settlement agreement.

25. A payment made under the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative administered by the Ministry of Housing, up to an amount that is equivalent to the amount specified in subsection 43 (1), if the following criteria are satisfied:

i. The payment is made by a service manager designated under the Housing Services Act, 2011.

ii. The payment is made to residents of a place that provides permanent housing with limited supports to vulnerable adults who require some supervision and support with the activities of daily living.

iii. The payment is made for the personal needs of those residents.

26. A payment made under the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative administered by the Ministry of Housing by a service manager designated under the Housing Services Act, 2011 and applied to,

i. rent deposits, including first and last month’s rent,

ii. establishing a new principal residence,

iii. maintaining the health or welfare of a member of a benefit unit in his or her current residence,

iv. arrears on any of the costs of shelter listed in subsection 42 (1), or

v. other services, items, payments or costs related to housing and homelessness, as approved by the Director.

27. Payments made by either or both of the Ministry of Economic Development and Growth and the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development under the Youth Jobs Strategy, if, in the opinion of the administrator, the payment will be used within a reasonable period and for the purpose for which it was paid.

28. That portion of a grant received under the Northern Health Travel Grant Program, administered by the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, that exceeds the amount paid under subparagraph 1 iii.1 of subsection 55 (1) for the same trip.

29. A payment received by a class member from the Nova Scotia Home for Colored Children Settlement Agreement.

30. Payments made under the Athlete Assistance Program, administered by the Department of Canadian Heritage.

31. A child support payment made by a person who has an obligation to support a member of the benefit unit under the Family Law Act, the Divorce Act (Canada) or similar legislation in another jurisdiction. 

32. An orphan’s pension payment under the Act Respecting the Québec Pension Plan(Quebec).

(2) The total amount allowed under paragraph 8.1 of section 52 and paragraphs 4 and 4.1 of subsection (1) shall not exceed $25,000.

(3) The exemption from income under paragraph 11.4 of subsection (1) does not include gifts or payments contributed to a registered disability savings plan if the contributions fail to comply with the condition required under subparagraph 146.4 (4) (g) (iii) of the Income Tax Act (Canada).

(4) The exemption under paragraph 4 of subsection (1) does not apply to amounts paid under the following provisions:

1. Subsections 13 (1), (2), (3), (7) and (8) of Regulation 672 of the Revised Regulations of Ontario 1990 (Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule -- Accidents before January 1, 1994) made under the Insurance Act.

2. Section 19 of Ontario Regulation 776/93 (Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule -- Accidents after December 31, 1993 and before November 1, 1996) made under the Insurance Act.

3. Section 12 of Ontario Regulation 403/96 (Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule -- Accidents on or after November 1, 1996) made under the Insurance Act.

4. Section 12 of Ontario Regulation 34/10 (Statutory Accident Benefits Schedule -- Effective September 1, 2010), made under the Insurance Act.


Treatment of Canada Child Tax Benefit

54.1 (1) The administrator may pay to Canada on behalf of a person who received income assistance part or all of an amount that Canada paid to the person and that was not excluded from the person's income under paragraph 2 of section 53 if Canada subsequently determines that the person was not eligible for the payment from Canada and notified the Director of that fact.

(2) An amount paid to Canada under subsection (1) shall be deemed to be income assistance.

Highlights

As financial assistance is determined by budgetary need, all income received or expected by any member of the benefit unit must be documented and verified. The amount of financial assistance payable is determined by taking into account the amount and type of income received. All sources of income must be monitored, verified and budgeted accordingly.

The following types of income are deducted from OW entitlement at rates established by the OW legislation.

SOURCE OF INCOMEAMOUNT OF DEDUCTION
government allowances 100%
governmental benefits (OAS, GAINS, etc.) 100%
foreign government pensions 100%
self-contained quarters 60%
room & board with meals 40% or $100 minimum
roomer 60% or $100 minimum
insurance, annuities, superannuation, pensions 100%
maintenance or support 100%
payments from loan agreements 100%
agreements for sale 100%
mortgage receivables 100%
support available from sponsor(s) 100%
statutory allowances 100%
Canada Pension Act (Canada) (CPP),
Employment Insurance Act (EI),
Workplace Safety Insurance Board (WSIB),
Quebec Pension Plan (QPP),
Civilians War Pension & Allowances Act (Canada),
Civilian and Merchant Marine
100%
registered pension plans 100%
interest and dividends on liquid assets 100%
earned income and training wages / allowances exemptions may apply

 

Client and Caseworker Roles and Responsibilities 

The following section addresses the responsibilities of the client and caseworker with respect to income reporting procedures.

Client

Failure to pursue other sources of income may affect a client's eligibility for OW.

The client is responsible to:

  • provide income verification for all members of the benefit unit.
  • pursue all income for which he or she or a member of their benefit unit may be eligible to receive, such as: Employment Insurance (EI), Canada Pension Plan (CPP) Disability Benefits, and Old Age Security etc.
  • advise the caseworker immediately regarding any changes in circumstances or income received. This contact may be by telephone, in writing, or by using the Changes Report form.

Clients are not required to pursue the following sources of income:

  • Child Support
  • Orphan's Benefits (Surviving Child's Benefit) under CPP or the Quebec Pension Plan
  • Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP)
  • CPP/QPP Early Retirement Benefits.
  • Locked-in pension funds.

Caseworker

The caseworker is responsible to:

  • advise clients of their responsibility to report all income received (including retroactive and lump sum payments) and any subsequent changes in regards to the income.
  • verify and document all sources of income. This includes the client's last source of income. Documentation must indicate the type, amount and date last received. In situations where the client indicates that no information or verification is available, the caseworker must ask the client to provide their income tax assessment.
  • assess whether there is potential income based on the client's circumstance.
    Example:   Client is 65 years old and worked in Canada for 10 years and declares no CPP. This client may be eligible for a CPP retirement pension and must be advised to apply for this potential income.
  • if appropriate, complete an Assignments of Benefits (AOB) form in situations where a benefit or award may be granted retroactively by another government agency or third party.
  • inquire about debts and any debt related expenses.

Chargeable Income

The following guidelines are used in the calculation of chargeable income:

  • the gross monthly income is calculated by recording the actual gross income received from wages, salaries, casual earnings, EI, and training programs.

Non Chargeable Income

The following is a partial list of payments, awards and allowances which are not included as income when calculating a client's assistance. 

  • Child Support
  • Orphan's Benefit (Surviving Child's Benefit) under CPP or the Quebec Pension Plan
  • Ontario Child Benefit (OCB)
  • Canada Child Benefit (CCB)
  • Assistance for Children With Severe Disabilities (ACSD), formerly known as Severely Handicapped Child Benefit
  • Payments by Children's Aid Societies (child not eligible for OWA)
  • Payments received for Respite Care from the Ministry of Children and Youth Services
  • Income tax payments or refunds
  • Ontario Sales Tax Transition Benefit
  • Ontario Sales Tax Credit
  • Ontario Property Tax Credit
  • Refunds received under the Ontario Children's Activity Tax Credit
  • Incentive allowances under Work Assessment Program
  • One time Death Benefit payment issued under the Canada Pension Plan (CPP)
  • B165 payments received from the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) designated as payments received under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act. This amount is indicated on the WSIB cheque stub as a B165 payment and is excluded from the total to be charged as income. Awards for Non-Economic Loss are exempt subject to maximums.
  • Reimbursements for child care expenses under the Ontario Child Care Supplement for Working Families (OCCS)
  • Quest for Gold - Ontario Athlete Assistance Program (OAAP)
  • Payments received through the Transplant Patient Expense Reimbursement (TPER) program of the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care.
  • Monthly credits received through the Ontario Electricity Support Program (OESP)
  • Ontario Autism Program – One Time Funding issued through the Ministry of Children and Youth Services
  • Ipperwash Final Settlement Agreement compensation payments
  • Payments received under each of the 3 components of the federal Thalidomide Support Package
    • Immediate lump sum payment
    • Ongoing yearly support payments
    • Extraordinary Medical Assistance Fund (EMAF)
  • Payments received under the two compensation packages of the Nova Scotia Home for colored Children Settlement Agreement (NSHCC)
    • Common Experience Payment
    • Independent Assessment Process/Degree of Harm Compensation
  • Registered Disability Savings Plans (RDSPs). RDSPs are intended to help parents and others save for the long-term financial security of a person with a severe disability. In general, any person under the age of 60 who is eligible for the federal Disability Tax Credit and resident in Canada can establish an RDSP. If the person is a minor, their parent or legal representative may establish the RDSP for their benefit.  Contributions to RDSPs may be supplemented by a Canada Disability Savings Grant and Canada Disability Savings Bond.  For social assistance purposes:
    • All funds held in RDSPs are exempt as assets
    • All contributions made to RDSPs are exempt as income
    • All income earned and re-invested in RDSPs is exempt as income
    • All withdrawals from an RDSP for any purpose are exempt as income

Other incomes listed below are also considered non-chargeable. Clients are required to provide verification upon declaration of the income.

  • donations from religious or charitable organizations, casual gifts or or voluntary payments up to a maximum of $6,000 over a 12 month period. See Gifts Loans and Donations guidelines.
  • an amount, up to a maximum of $25,000.00, received as damages or compensation for pain and suffering as a result of injury to or the death of a member of the benefit unit, or expenses actually and reasonably incurred or to be incurred as a result of injury to or the death of a member of the benefit unit.
  • there is an unlimited exemption applied to pain and suffering awards received under Helpline Reconciliation Model Agreement, the Grandview Agreement, Multi-Provincial/Territorial Assistance Program and Extraordinary Assistance Plan, the Ontario Hepatitis C Assistance Plan, the 1986 -1990 Hepatitis C Settlement Agreement and the Walkerton Compensation Plan. However, in some of the awards, there will be payments for items other than pain and suffering which may be considered in calculating OW eligibility. For detailed information on the above, see Assets.
  • grants received under the Skills Development Employment Benefit (formerly Transitional Skills Grant program) administered by Human Resource Development Canada (HRSDC), provided the funds are intended for and spent on training or education, and where the course and amount are approved by the Administrator.
  • payments received under the Opportunities Fund for Persons with Disabilities. These payments are administered by HRSDC for costs that were incurred or will be incurred as a result of participation in employment-related activities that have been approved.
  • Youth Jobs Strategy (YJS) payments made by either the Ministry of Economic Development, Trade and Employment (MEDTE) and/or the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) if used within a reasonable period and for the purpose intended. The four funds included in the YJS are:
    • Ontario Youth Employment Fund
    • Youth Skills Connections
    • Ontario Youth Entrepreneurship Fund
    • Youth Innovation Fund
  • Experience Ontario payments
  • payment received under the Learning, Earning and Parenting (LEAP) program are exempt as income as long as the money is used towards the parent's post secondary education or it is invested in an Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) for one of the client's dependants. This $500.00 payment is for sole support parents aged 16 to 25 who participate in and complete the LEAP program.
  • any Canada Education Savings Grant paid into the RESP by the Government and interest earned on the RESP is exempt as income, as long as it is reinvested into the RESP.
  • payments received from the Department of Indian Affairs and Northern Development or under the Indian Act other than funds for post-secondary education.
  • boarder or rental income received from a person is exempt only if the client or spouse is the parent or grandparent of the boarder or renter and the person(s) boarding or renting is in receipt of basic financial assistance, or a beneficiary of ODSP.
  • locked in money accessed under the Pension Benefits Act if the income from these funds are used under one of the following circumstances:
    • to pay rent arrears
    • to prevent eviction due to the non-payment of a secured debt on a principal residence (mortgage or taxes),
    • to cover non-reimbursed medical expenses,
    • to cover reasonable expenses for renovations or alterations of a principle residence required due to illness or physical disability,
    • for first and last month’s rent to obtain a principal residence, or
    • is used to purchase an exempt asset, with the approval of the Manager, Social Services(funds before taxes must be less than $25,000 per year),
    • with the approval of the MSS, a portion of the payment received from the sale or disposition of an asset is applied towards the purchase of a principal residence by the client or spouse to be used by the benefit unit,
    • the purchase of any other asset that is deemed to be necessary for the health and welfare of the client, spouse or dependant.
  • the following types of loans may be exempt as income with the approval of Manager, Social Services:
    • business loans,
    • loans for medically necessary health related expenses,
    • loans, gifts, bursaries or scholarships provided for direct school related costs,
    • loans applied to the purchase of a motor vehicle required for employment assistance activities or to maintain employment, and
    • loans applied to the payment of first and last month's rent necessary to secure accommodation for the benefit unit.

For additional information refer to OW Reg. 54 (1).

Earnings from Employment, Operating a Business and Amounts paid under Training/Employment Programs

In the following situations, income from earnings, a business, or paid under a training program are exempt from any charge:

  • The first $200 in net earnings or amounts paid under a training program that each adult member of the benefit unit earns plus 50% of net earnings that are in excess of $200.  
  • Earnings or amounts paid under a training program to all members of a benefit under the age of 18.
  • Earnings or amounts paid under a training program to all members of a benefit unit over the age of 18 attending secondary school full-time.
  • Earnings and amounts paid under a training program to persons in full-time attendance in an approved program of post-secondary study who are taking at least 60% of a full course load.  This includes earnings and training amounts paid in the pre-study period defined as a maximum of 16 weeks prior to the start of the study period. Where the student completes or withdraws from the approved program of study, the earnings are no longer considered to be exempt.
  • Honorariums that are reimbursements for out-of-pocket expense(s).
  • Training allowance received under the Employment Insurance Act (EI) when used for approved training courses and materials. Note: Payments received to assist with personal living costs are not exempt as income.
  • The New Work Transition Incentive (NWTI) offered by Employment Ontario, subject to the $200 flat rate and 50% partial earnings exemption.
  • Payments received from Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC) or a First Nations Band for board and lodging of a student attending secondary school off-reserve.
  • The Learning, Earnings and Parenting (LEAP) Incentive.

Treatment of Income

Income Received Prior To An Application For OW

When a client applies for OW and was in receipt of income prior to the application, the following documentation is required:

  • type of income,
  • type of payment - ongoing income or lump sum arrears,
  • date last income received,
  • period of coverage (intended period of time), and
  • how was money spent e.g, paid rent, paid bills etc.

Generally, income which is not ongoing and is received prior to an application for assistance is not considered chargeable income when determining OW financial assistance. However, these monies are considered in the allowable asset levels.

All lump sum payments are considered for the months intended. If the money is intended for a period of time that the client was in receipt of social assistance an overpayment may be established.

All current/ongoing income is considered when calculating financial assistance and determining eligibility.

Duplicate Payments

There may be instances when a client receives a retroactive or lump sum payment while in receipt of OW. The source of the income must be verified to determine if the income received is to be calculated based on the month it was intended for and or the month received.

Assignment of Benefits (AOB)

An AOB is completed when a client, spouse or dependant is entitled to receive a benefit, award or payment and the payment covers the same period of time financial assistance from OW was issued. Information is recorded in the Additional Details screen in SDMT, and the corresponding AOB forms completed by the caseworker.
Social Security Reciprocal Agreements

Reciprocal agreements apply toward the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Old Age Security (OAS) program. This agreement allows the client to apply the period of residency and employment in a reciprocal country towards the residency and employment criteria required by OAS or CPP. Reciprocal agreements have been made with: Antigua, Australia, Austria, Barbados, Bermuda, Belgium, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominica, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Guernsey, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Jersey, Luxembourg, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, Nevis, Norway, Portugal, St. Kitts, St. Lucia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United States.

Procedures

Verification

All income declared by the client, spouse or dependant is to be documented. The client must provide verification of the amount, frequency and source of the income.

Acceptable Verification
  • divorce settlement which indicates spousal support
  • letter of eligibility from income sources, such as: pensions or federal income support
  • bank records showing deposits and withdrawals
  • appeal letters from other income source
  • T-4 or T-5 from Canada Customs Revenue Agency (CCRA)
  • income tax assessments
  • employment pay stubs
  • sponsorship agreements or payments
  • fire insurance settlement documents
  • cheque stubs
  • copy of application for other income
  • repayment from an income source due to an assignment
  • training allowance pay stubs
  • Ontario Student Assistance Plan (OSAP) assessments summary
  • monthly statement and/or receipts for self-employment income and expenses

DOCUMENTATION

Statement of Income (SOI)

Clients with earnings and/or training allowance income are required to sign the Statement of Income (SOI) form and can either attach their paystubs or fill in all paystub details unless otherwise advised by the caseworker. Clients who fill in their paystub details must keep their paystubs for future review. The SOI should be submitted on the 15th of each month. In situations where a client receives a cash payment he or she is to obtain a letter from the employer/source of income.

Self-employed clients are required to complete and submit a Business Income and Expense Report and attach it to their signed SOI on the 15th of each month.

All clients need to report their child care expenses every month on the SOI. Childcare receipts should be kept for future review unless requested specifically by the caseworker to provide.

CALCULATION OF CHARGEABLE EMPLOYMENT INCOME

Exemptions on Employment Income

The earnings exemption amount is the first $200 that is earned from employment, a business or a training program by each adult member of the benefit unit per month plus an additional 50% partial exemption on earnings that are over $200.

Payroll deductions which are recognized as mandatory in determining net employment income are:

  • income tax
  • Canada Pension Plan
  • Employment Insurance
  • union dues
  • mandatory pension contributions

The amount of allowable deduction for income tax purposes is the amount required by law according to family size and composition.

The amount of allowable deduction for pension plans is the amount required by the terms of employment.

Net employment income after mandatory payroll deductions and net payments under training programs will be used in determining chargeable income.

Eligibility For Full Exemptions

Prior to receiving full exemptions, the client must have served the qualifying period or have met the criteria for the grace period.

The qualifying period refers to the three continuous months in receipt of Ontario Works, Ontario Disability Support Program, or Family Benefits in Ontario.

The intent of the grace period is to encourage recipients to leave social assistance for employment or a training program and have the same rules apply within a reasonable period of time after taking the job or program. However, the reason for termination does not need to be "employed" for possible eligibility for the grace period.

Criteria for grace period:

  • in receipt of social assistance for three continuous months,
  • leaves the system with the presence of income from employment, a business, or payments under a training program, and
  • reapplies within six months of receiving the last social assistance.

At the time of re-application, the client must meet all three criteria to be eligible for full exemptions. Clients may be eligible for more than one grace period provided they meet the eligibility criteria each time. The grace period applies to a recipient, a spouse, same-sex partner or dependent adult.

Note: A person must receive assistance for three continuous months and have income from earnings, a business, training allowance or training wage at the time of exit from the OW program in order to qualify for another grace period.

Calculating Chargeable Employment Income

Full Exemptions

If a client has served the qualifying period or meets the criteria for the grace period, there is eligibility for full exemptions including child care costs on the net income received from income from employment or payments under a training program.

Calculating Chargeable Income - Full Exemptions
Step 1

Calculate monthly gross employment income

  • less mandatory payroll deductions
  • income tax
  • Canada Pension Plan
  • Employment Insurance
  • union dues
  • mandatory pension contributions
  = Net monthly earnings
Step 2 Apply the $200 flat rate earnings exemption, per adult member of the benefit unit with earnings, and the 50% partial exemption to the net earnings.
Step 3 Add the child care deductions (if applicable) to the earnings exemption to determine the total allowable earnings exemptions
Step 4 Subtract the total allowable earnings exemption from the net earnings
  = Deductible earnings

Example

Mary is a single parent with a six-year old child who has been on Ontario Works for six months. Her gross monthly income from employment is $1,875, less $275 in payroll deductions. Mary's childcare costs are $500 per month.

Step 1: Mary's net earnings are calculated by subtracting mandatory payroll deductions from her gross employment income.

Gross earnings $1,875.00
Less mandatory payroll deductions - $275.00
Net earnings = $1,600.00

 

Step 2: The $200 flat rate exemption is subtracted from her net earnings.

Net earnings $1,600.00
Less flat rate exemption - $200.00
  = $1,400.00

 

After the $200 flat rate is subtracted, Mary has $1400 in potentially chargeable employment income. The potentially chargeable employment income of $1400 is then multiplied by 50% to calculate the portion of her exemption attributable to the 50% partial earnings exemption:

Total earnings exemption: $200 + $700 = $900

Step 3: The child care deduction of $500 for informal child care costs are added to her earnings exemption amount to arrive at the total allowable deduction amount.

Total earnings exemption $900.00
Child care deduction + $500.00
Total allowable deductions = $1,400.00

 

Step 4: The total allowable earnings are subtracted from her net earnings to arrive at her deductible earnings. 

 

Net earnings $1,600.00
Less total allowable deductions - $1,400.00
Deductible earnings = $200.00

 

Eligibility for Partial Exemptions

If a client has not served the qualifying period or does not meet the criteria for the grace period, the only allowable exemption to the net employment income, a business or payments under a training program is the allowable child care costs.

Calculating Chargeable Income - Partial Exemptions
Step 1

Calculate monthly gross earnings

  • less mandatory payroll deductions
  • income tax
  • Canada Pension Plan
  • Employment Insurance
  • union dues
  • mandatory pension contributions
  = Net monthly earnings
Step 2
  • less allowable child care costs
  = Deductible earnings

 

Eligibility for Earnings and Asset Exemption While Attending a Post-Secondary Educational Institution

Employment earnings (including self-employment) and the amounts paid under a training program can be exempt as income and assets for persons attending a full-time post-secondary educational program. This exemption will benefit participants in receipt of social assistance who undertake full-time post-secondary education as part of their approved service plan to earn and save money to pay for their education.

In order for a member of the benefit unit to be assessed for the post-secondary earnings and asset exemption, the participant must have served the qualifying period or have met the criteria for the grace period.

The earnings exemption will apply to income earned or paid both during the school year and during the pre-study period, defined as a maximum of 16 weeks prior to the start of the study period.

The exemption will apply to any member of a benefit unit. In order to be eligible, a member must:

  1. Be enrolled in an eligible program of study; and
  2. Be taking at least 60% of a full course load (Note: the post-secondary institution determines the number of courses or credits that constitute a full course load and this may vary with the program of study).

Child Care Expenses

Child care expenses are monthly payments made by clients to enable him or her to assume employment or to participate in paid training programs. Child care expenses are an allowable deduction to the client's income from employment income or payments made under a training program to determine chargeable income. Child care expenses are allowed in both partial and full employment exemption calculations.

Licensed care: refers to child care provided through a licensed child care centre or through licensed private home child care. There are no maximum monthly allowable costs for licensed day care.

Unlicensed care: refers to child care provided on an informal basis through negotiation between the parent and the provider. The maximum monthly allowable costs are: Up to $600 per child.

The Extended Day Program (the before- and after-school program) is provided by school boards under the Education Act as part of the Full-Day Early Learning Kindergarten Program.

The Up-Front Child Care Costs for informal care is subject to the $600 maximum in a twelve-month period.