Assets over limit, Inheritances and Preservation of ODSP Benefits
If a person has assets over the prescribed ODSP limits, or if a person will receive an Inheritance, they could still apply for ODSP benefits
ODSP has rules about the maximum amount of income and assets that someone applying for or in receipt of ODSP benefits is allowed to have.
The rules about income and assets apply to you and to each family member that ODSP considers to be part of your benefit unit.
To qualify for ODSP income support you cannot have income above a certain level. The level depends on your family size and housing costs. You also cannot have assets worth more than a certain amount, and this amount again depends on your family size. Some examples of income are CPP Disability Benefits, Structured Settlements and Long Term Disability Benefits. Some examples of assets would be RRSPs, a cottage, bank accounts and other valuable property. To qualify for ODSP income support as a single person, you cannot have more than $5,000 in monetary assets. Our office can assist with exempting assets above this limit.
Some income and assets are exempt. This means that ODSP does not count them when they calculate your income support. For example, your home, one car, and most household items do not count as assets.
Your benefits should not be cut off if:
you spend inheritance money to buy assets that are exempt, and
you buy these assets in the month that you receive the money.
Even if you spend the money in other ways, you still may be eligible for benefits. You must be able to prove how you spent the money. For example, if you use the money to pay for items or services, you will need to keep receipts. And if you use the money to pay off a debt, you will need to show documents that are proof of the debt. These ODSP rules are complicated. It is important to seek legal advice.
This is just a brief synopsis of how an Inheritance might affect someone in receipt of ODSP benefits. There are many other ways that an Inheritance could be handled to ensure that someone on ODSP would be allowed to keep an inheritance. It is very important that each individual family be assessed to determine what the best choice for their family dynamic would be to protect inherited funds.
For more information, request a consultation and we will get back to you with more detail. A personal conversation with Mr. Pope would be beneficial when it comes to our loved ones future care, even when the family may no longer be here to provide what they have always provided for the ODSP recipient.
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