Canada Pension Plan Disability Benefits


The Canada Pension Plan (CPP) has a financial assistance program called Disability Benefit. The benefit is a monthly payment to people with a disability who are unable to work. People receive it until they can return to work on a regular basis. It is available for people who have paid CPP while they were employed. To find out if you have made CPP payments, visit

Canada Pension Plan’s Definition of Disability

To receive CPP Disability Benefit, you must have a disability. In many cases, spinal cord injury is considered a disability. To qualify, your disability must be both severe and prolonged. A prolonged disability is when it is likely to be long term or indefinite. A severe disability prevents you from working at any job on a regular basis.

How to Qualify
  • Have a disability
  • Be under 65 years of age
  • Stopped working because of a medical condition
  • Paid into CPP during one of these two time frames:
    1. During at least 4 of the last 6 years.
    2. During at least 3 of the last 6 years (if you paid into CPP for 25 years).
How to Apply

Your social worker or community support worker can help you with an application. Download an application from

How Long Will It Take to Be Approved?

Approval may take up to six months. Service Canada will send you a letter within 4 months to let you know your forms have been received. If you are not approved during the first round, you can ask for a review of your application. Visit their website to learn more about this process.

Disclaimer: Information is provided for educational purposes only. Consult a qualified health professional regarding specific medical concerns or treatment. University Health Network does not assume and disclaims any liability to any party for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions in this publication.