The Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) will want to collect the overpayment.
If you’re getting income support
ODSP can reduce the amount of income support you get each month.
Usually, when someone has an overpayment ODSP reduces their assistance by 5% each month, until they’ve paid back what they owe. This means that if you usually get $1,200 each month, ODSP would give you $60 less or $1,140.
For ODSP to reduce your assistance by more than 10%, you have to agree. For example, if you usually get $1,200 each month, taking off 15% would mean you get $180 less or $1,020.
Some people agree to have their assistance reduced by more than 10% because they want to pay back the money as fast as they can.
If you’re no longer getting income support
ODSP will ask you to pay back the money if the overpayment is because of income support they gave you.
ODSP will send you a letter and ask you to pay back the money. The letter might come from your local ODSP office or from a government office in Toronto called the Overpayment Recovery Unit.
They may ask you to agree to pay it back over time, for example, a certain amount each month. Or they might agree that you don’t have to pay back all of the money.
If you don’t pay back the money or make an agreement about it, ODSP can use Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to collect the overpayment. The CRA does this by taking it out of money that they owe you, for example, your income tax refund.
ODSP can decide not to do anything
ODSP can decide that they’re not going to try to collect the overpayment. But this hardly ever happens.
Sometimes ODSP decides to wait and collect the overpayment later on.
Waiting to collect an overpayment
Here are some reasons why ODSP might wait to collect an overpayment:
- You owe child or spousal support. And over 10% of your income support is already being taken off and sent to the Family Responsibility Office to pay the support that you owe.
- You didn’t agree with ODSP’s decision about the overpayment and are waiting for the ODSP office to do an internal review or for the Social Benefits Tribunal to decide about your appeal.
- The police charged you with fraud because of the overpayment and you’re waiting for the court to make a decision.
- Making you pay back the money would be unfair or cause you hardship. For examples, see the section in Step 3 called Why you might not have to pay back an overpayment.
Getting more information and help
To find out what ODSP might do to try to collect an overpayment from you, you may want to get more information and advice.