ODSP Rules Changed to Level Playing Field
September 06, 2017, Kitchener, Ontario
Posted by: Robert Deutschmann, Personal Injury Lawyer
Changes to ODSP Exemptions
The Ontario Disability Support Program is a provincial program that provides income and employment support to those Ontarians with disabilities. In order to receive ODSP you must have a medically eligible need, and meet certain financial requirements. In part, the requirements state that you cannot own liquid assets, or have over $5000 in cash if you are single or $7000 if you are a couple.
Until recently what that meant was that ODSP recipients could maintain their ODSP benefit and receive a court -awarded settlement of up to $100,000 for the loss of care, guidance and companionship due to:
- the death of a family member, as a result of loss, injury or death
- pain and suffering as a result of a loss, injury or death
- Expenses from an injury or death of a family member in an accident.
This limit of $100,000 meant that often severely impaired people had their ODSP benefits clawed by by the government and if compensation exceeded $100K then the assistance through ODSP would be revoked. This resulted in a two-tier system since survivors of sexual abuse who were awarded compensation by the Government were allowed to keep all of their settlement and continue to be eligible for ODSP.
The OTLA and Board of Directors member Simona Jellinek viewed the system as unfair and arbitrary. It did not treat all plaintiffs equally. The OTLA and Ms. Jellinek acted and as a result of their lobbying efforts the government has indicated that Ontarians receiving the ODSP benefit will now exempt awards for pain and suffering, as well as for loss of care.
Recipients of ODSP will now be able to use their pain and suffering compensation for any purpose they see fit, rather than only for pre-approved disability related costs. These changes represent a significant movement forward by improving access to the most vulnerable Ontarians to equal and fair justice.
You can find more information on the changes here.
|Posted under Accident Benefit News
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About Deutschmann Law
Deutschmann Law serves South-Western Ontario with offices in Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Woodstock, Brantford, Stratford and Ayr. The law practice of Robert Deutschmann focuses almost exclusively in personal injury and disability insurance matters. For more information, please visit www.deutschmannlaw.com or call us toll-free at 1-866-414-4878.
It is important that you review your accident benefit file with one of our experienced personal injury / car accident lawyers to ensure that you obtain access to all your benefits which include, but are limited to, things like physiotherapy, income replacement benefits, vocational retraining and home modifications.