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Can I work and still get income support from the Ontario Disability Support Program?

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Can I work and still get income support from the Ontario Disability Support Program?
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Community Legal Education Ontario (CLEO)

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Can I work and still get income support from the Ontario Disability Support Program?
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Reviewed: 
June 14, 2018
Answer

The rules of the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) say that you can work and still get income support as long as you:

  • tell ODSP about any money you make
  • don’t make too much money

ODSP looks at how much money you or someone else in your household makes from:

  • a job
  • a training allowance
  • being self-employed

ODSP rules about how money you earn affects your assistance

Earnings exemptions are the rules that let you earn some money without ODSP reducing your assistance by the full amount that you earn.

The general rule is that you can make $200 in net earnings in a month before it affects the amount ODSP gives you.

If you make more than $200 in net earnings in a month, ODSP gives you less assistance. They reduce your income support by an amount that equals half of the net earnings you make that are more than $200.

For example, if you make $300 in net earnings in a month, ODSP takes $50 from the amount they usually give you. This is because $300 in net earnings minus $200 equals $100. And $100 divided by 2 equals $50. See below for how this works:

$300 (net monthly earnings)
- $200
= $100
÷ 2
= $50 (amount ODSP subtracts from the amount they usually give you)

Rules that can increase the amount you get

You might get to keep more of your assistance if:

  • you have to pay for child care so you can go to work
  • you have expenses related to working because of your disability

You might also be able to get:

  • money to help pay for items or services you need because of your disability
  • money to help pay for things you need to start working
  • an extra $100 each month because you’re working

Step 2 has more about how earnings exemptions affect the amount you get from ODSP.

Step 3 has more about claiming child‑care expenses.

Step 4 has more about other rules that can help you with costs of working.

If you live in a First Nations community

ODSP will not reduce your income support because you’re getting money for being in an employment training program that lasts up to 12 months.

This includes the training allowance and money to pay for child care and travel.

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