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Ontario Works wants proof that I qualify for assistance. What if I can't get what they ask for?
Long delays for appeal hearings
If you're appealing a decision made by OW or ODSP in 2020, your appeal hearing may not happen for a long time. People report that they're getting hearing dates from the Social Benefits Tribunal that are between 9 and 16 months in the future. We'll update this information as things change.
OW must be clear and specific about what they want.
And the information and documents that they say you have to get must relate to:
- whether you qualify for assistance
- the amount of assistance that you should get
See Step 1 for examples of what OW may ask you for.
If you can't get what OW asks for
You should not have to give OW documents that you:
- can't get for reasons that are out of your control
- can't afford to get
For example, you don't have the money to pay bank fees to get your financial records.
Or someone else, like a former spouse, has documents that you need and they won’t give them to you.
If you don't give OW what they ask for
OW might refuse your application for assistance if you don’t give them what they ask for.
If you’re already getting assistance, OW may give you less or cut off your assistance. If this happens, they may send you a letter saying they're "suspending" some or all of your assistance until you give them what they asked for.
You may want to get help from a community legal clinic if:
- you don't understand what OW wants
- you think OW is being unfair
- you think OW is asking for information they can't require you to give them
And if OW refuses to give you assistance, or reduces or cuts it off, a community legal clinic may be able to help you.