Debt Articles

MY CPP Disability is Not Enough to Live On

Written by Steve Rhode

Question:

Dear Steve,

I have recently become unable to work due to arthritis in all my joints (very painful) However I just started collecting CPP disability. But it is not enough to pay all my everyday living expenses. Now I am starting to get in debt. Borrowing money from people…my Cpp is $453.61.I also get survivor benefit for $466.64…Which together equals $920.25…My household bills come to $978.00. I am getting very scared and depressed…. am currently seeing a counsellor and she is helping me apply for Aish as well But that could take a very long time

What can I do to get the extra income?

Brenda

Answer:

Dear Brenda,

Scott Hanah from the Credit Counselling Society in Canada had this sage advice to offer you.

“I am sorry for the delay in responding to you. In respect to your situation, I believe you have taken the right step to apply for AISH since you are dealing with a long-term disability. The fact that you have qualified for and are receiving CPP disability means that your AISH application should be more streamlined and straightforward. AISH is meant to supplement the income that you are currently receiving from CPP Disability and CPP Survivors Benefits. It will ensure that your monthly income is topped up to a maximum amount of $1,588, which would help your situation. In addition to this, AISH will provide you with additional financial assistance for health-related personal benefits and treatment through to medical travel and even service pet-related costs. My advice would be that you and your counsellor closely monitor your AISH application via their toll-free number ‘310-000’ or by visiting your nearest AISH office if any issues arise. AISH can also connect you with government programs in Alberta that can offer you subsidized housing if you are not already part of a housing program.

In the meanwhile, without knowing which city you live in specifically, I would recommend that you call Alberta’s search service “211” to obtain some temporary relief through the agencies they can connect you with (local food banks, rent banks, clothing, medical aid). The goal would be to utilize these services as financial stop gaps until your long-term relief from AISH comes through. You can also go online to see the services they can connect you to at www.ab.211.ca If you are dealing with any debt issues you can contact the Credit Counselling Society which is a non-profit agency at 1-888-527-8999 to speak with a counsellor to review your situation and options free of charge.

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Sincerely,
Scott Hannah”

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About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

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