Public Pension Plans

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Old Age Security Benefits

Changes to Old Age Security

The Government of Canada, in Budget 2012, announced three changes to ensure that the Old Age Security (OAS) program remains on a sustainable path:

1. Eligibility for the Old Age Security pension and the Guaranteed Income Supplement

The Government of Canada proposes to gradually increase the age of eligibility for the OAS pension and the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) between the years 2023 and 2029, from 65 to 67. People currently receiving OAS benefits will not be affected by the proposed changes.

Click on the link below (your birth year) to see how your eligibility may change for the OAS pension and the GIS:

2. Voluntary deferral of the Old Age Security pension

The Government of Canada also proposes a voluntary deferral of the Old Age Security (OAS) pension that will give people the option to defer take-up of their OAS pension by up to five years past the age of eligibility, and subsequently receive a higher, actuarially adjusted pension.

3. Proactive enrolment for OAS benefits

To improve services for seniors, the Government of Canada proposes to start a proactive enrolment process that will remove the need for many seniors to apply for the OAS pension and the GIS. This means that eligible seniors will no longer need to complete an OAS pension or GIS application. Proactive enrolment will be implemented in a phased-in approach from 2013 to 2016. People who are eligible for proactive enrolment will be notified personally by mail. Service Canada will continue to send applications to those seniors who cannot be proactively enrolled for OAS benefits. Applications are also available on the Service Canada website.

Benefit Payment Rates

Financial planning for retirement usually begins with the concept of preserving Old Age Security. The OAS clawback is effectively a tax on income received over that amount. Therefore taxpayers who want to preserve their OAS benefits look to income splitting, often done by shifting RRSP contributions to a spouse with a significantly lower income or shorter tenure in the labour force (which generally results in lower CPP entitlements). Note that in 2014, the clawback threshold for Old Age Security is $71,592.

Old Age Security Benefit Payment Rates
January to March 2014
Your situation Maximum monthly payment amount Maximum annual income to receive the OAS pension Footnote 1
Old Age Security (OAS) pension
Regardless of your marital status $551.54 $115,716 Footnote 2 (individual income)
Old Age Security benefits
Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) amounts for individuals receiving a full Old Age Security (OAS) pension.
If you are a single, widowed or divorced pensioner $747.86 $16,728 (individual income)
If your spouse/common-law partner receives the full OAS pension $495.89 $22,080 (combined income)
If your spouse/common-law partner does not receive an OAS pension $747.86 $40,080 (combined income)
If your spouse/common-law partner receives the Allowance $495.89 $40,080 (combined income)
Allowance
If your spouse/common-law partner receives the GIS and the full OAS pension $1,047.43 $30,912 (combined income)
Allowance for the Survivor
If you are a surviving spouse or common-law partner $1,172.65 $22,512 (individual income)

For aggregate Old Age Security program amounts and figures, see the Quarterly report of Canada Pension Plan and Old Age Security monthly amounts and related figures.

Footnote 1 The maximum annual income is the income level at which you cannot receive the Old Age Security (OAS) pension or benefits. See what income and deductions are considered in the maximum annual income allowed to be eligible for the OAS pension (see the related information on the Canada Revenue Agency's Web site) and for the OAS benefits.

Footnote 2 If your individual net income is above $70,954 for 2013, your monthly Old Age Security (OAS) pension payment amount will be reduced, beginning in July 2014, to recover the repayment amount owed. If your income is $114,815 or above, your entire OAS pension will be recovered.

Canada Pension Plan

Changes to CPP

The Canada Pension Plan (CPP) is changing. The Government of Canada is making changes to the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) intended to give Canadians more options so that they can make decisions that are right for them as they make the transition from work to retirement. These changes will gradually be introduce from 2011 to 2016, and will include:

The following table summarizes the impact of the CPP changes being phased in the years leading up to 2016:

Age At Start >CPP Adjustment
2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
60 - 30.00% - 30.00% - 31.20% - 32.40% - 33.60% - 34.80% - 36.00%
61 - 24.00% - 24.00% - 24.96% - 25.92% - 26.88% - 27.84% - 28.80%
62 - 18.00% - 18.00% - 18.72% - 19.44% - 20.16% - 20.88% - 21.60%
63 - 12.00% - 12.00% - 12.48% - 12.96% - 13.44% - 13.92% - 14.40%
64 - 6.00% - 6.00% - 6.24% - 6.48% - 7.28% - 6.96% - 7.20%
65 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0% 0%
66 6.00% 6.84% 7.68% 8.40% 8.40% 8.40% 8.40%
67 12.00% 13.68% 15.36% 16.80% 16.80% 16.80% 16.80%
68 18.00% 20.52% 23.04% 25.20% 25.20% 25.20% 25.20%
69 24.00% 27.36% 30.72% 33.60% 33.60% 33.60% 33.60%
70 30.00% 34.20% 38.40% 42.00% 42.00% 42.00% 42.00%

Note that the CPP operates throughout Canada, except in Quebec, where the Quebec Pension Plan (QPP) provides benefits. These changes do not apply to the QPP.

Canada Pension Plan Payment Rates

Type of pension or benefit Average amount
for new beneficiaries (October 2013)
Maximum payment amount (2014)
Retirement pension (at age 65) $594.19 $1,038.33
Post-retirement benefit (at age 65) $10.19 $25.96
Disability benefit $882.80 $1,236.35
Survivor's pension - younger than 65 $402.23 $567.91
Survivor's pension - 65 and older $300.99 $623.00
Children of disabled CPP contributors $228.66 $230.72
Children of deceased CPP contributors $228.66 $230.72
Death benefit (maximum one-time payment) $2,286.03 $2,500.00
Combined benefits
Combined survivor's and retirement pension (at age 65) $771.81 $1,038.33
Combined survivor's pension and disability benefit $998.95 $1,236.35

For a more detailed report on CPP amounts and figures, see the OAS and CPP Program Information Card (Rate Card).