I’m under 18 and don’t live with my parents. Can I get OW?

Try to find someone who can confirm why you’re on your own

If a Children's Aid Society (CAS) tells Ontario Works (OW) why you can't live with your parents, OW will not need to ask anyone else about it.

But if OW can't confirm the reasons with your parents or a CAS, they may ask you to find another way to do this.

Getting a letter

You might want to try to get a letter from someone who knows if you were abused at home or why you can't live with your parents.

For example, this could be:

  • a teacher, guidance counsellor, or social worker
  • a doctor
  • a police officer
  • a religious leader from your faith community
  • a neighbour, a relative, or a friend

If you need more time

You might need to apply for OW before you have time to get someone to write a letter for you.

If your parents abused you, OW is supposed to give you assistance for at least one month even if you don't have any way to confirm the abuse.

But if you don't find a way to confirm the abuse within the month, OW may:

  • cut off your assistance, or
  • say that you have to go for counselling and give you more time.

Going for counselling

If OW sends you for counselling, you may be able to get a letter from the counsellor to show OW that you were abused.

If no one else can confirm why you’re on your own

OW can't refuse to give you assistance only because there is no one who can confirm why you're on your own.

If this happens to you, contact a community legal clinic for help dealing with OW.

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