On September 1st the Ministry of Social Development and Social Innovation (MSDSI) will introduce a new procedure which will make it easier for people receiving disability assistance who exceed their Annual Earnings Exemption (AEE) limit to return to assistance. Recipients who wish to do so can continue to submit a monthly report slip to MSDSI even after they reach their AEE limit and cease to be eligible for assistance. Once the AEE limit is renewed the following January or if a person's earned income falls below their disability assistance rate during the year then disability assistance can be automatically re-instated.
Monthly reports are due by the 5th day of the following month that income is received (e.g. income received in May should be reported by June 5th). Monthly reports can be completed online using My Self Serve or submitted to a Ministry office using the Monthly Report form (HR0081). People who choose not to report income on a monthly basis after they exceed the AEE limit keep their disability designation and will not need to reapply for the designation using the 28 page PWD designation application. However, they will need to submit a re-application for assistance which assesses financial eligibility if they wish to return to disability assistance.
Annual Earnings Exemption Refresher
The AEE allows people on disability assistance to receive earned income (usually this means income received in exchange for work or the provision of a service) without a reduction to their disability assistance. A person's AEE limit is the amount of earned income they can receive during the year without a reduction of disability assistance. Any earned income received after a person exceeds their AEE limit is deducted dollar for dollar from their disability assistance. The maximum AEE limit for a single person is $9600 per year (pro-rated for the number of months a person is receiving disability assistance in the year).
The AEE limit is renewed every January which, due to the MSDSI reporting system, allows people who are otherwise eligible for disability assistance to begin receiving assistance again in February for the March benefit month. The AEE does not apply to other sources of income (e.g. Canada Pension Plan Disability Benefits, Employment Insurance, Old Age Security), which are generally deducted dollar for dollar from disability assistance unless there is a specific exemption.
If you have any questions about this information, please contact Advocacy Access Program Director Sam Turcott at 604-872-1278 or 1-800-663-1278.