Canada Pension Plan Disability Benefit

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Canada Pension Plan (CPP) provides disability benefits to people who have made enough contributions to the CPP and who are disabled and cannot work at any job on a regular basis. Benefits may also be available to their dependent children.

  • CPP disability benefit
    A taxable monthly payment that is available to people who have contributed to the CPP and who are not able to work regularly because of a disability.
  • Children’s benefit
    A monthly benefit for dependent children (under age 18 or between 18 and 25 and attending school full time) of someone receiving a CPP disability benefit.

What we mean by “disability”

To qualify for a disability benefit under the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), a disability must be both “severe” and “prolonged”, and it must prevent you from being able to work at any job on a regular basis.

Severe means that you have a mental or physical disability that regularly stops you from doing any type of substantially gainful work.

Prolonged means that your disability is long-term and of indefinite duration or is likely to result in death.

Both the “severe” and “prolonged” criteria must be met simultaneously at the time of application. There is no common definition of “disability” in Canada. Even if you qualify for a disability benefit under other government programs or from private insurers, you may not necessarily qualify for a CPP disability benefit.

The CRA’s medical adjudicators will determine, based on your application and supporting documentation, whether your disability is both severe and prolonged.


To qualify for a Canada Pension Plan (CPP) disability benefit, you must:

  • have a severe and prolonged disability;
  • be under the age of 65; and
  • must have contributed to the CPP in four of the last six years or three of the last years if you have contributed for at least 25 years.

How much could you receive

For 2016, the average monthly CPP disability benefit is $933.82 and the maximum monthly amount is $1,290.81. You will receive the basic monthly amount fixed for all recipients ($471.43), plus an amount based on how much you contributed to the CPP during your entire working career.

If you are receiving a CPP disability benefit, your dependent children may also be eligible for a children’s benefit. In 2016, the flat monthly rate your child can receive is $237.69.

If you would like more information on various programs, deductions and credits that can help you and your family, contact GB Pilley & Associates Ltd., Chartered Professional Accountants at 604 926 3522.


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