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The CPP-Disability benefit is a federally administered program that provides a monthly disability pension to those who are not able to work for an extended period due to illness. Québec administers their own plan for Québec residents. The benefit is paid until the age of 65, when its converts to the CPP or QPP retirement pension.
The amount of the benefit paid depends on how much and how long you contributed to the CPP/QPP Plan. Everyone over 18 is supposed to contribute to the CPP/QPP plan if their earnings are over $3500 per year. Most contribute through their employment. If you stayed home at certain points to raise children, you may receive equivalent credits for this work. There is a maximum monthly benefit amount.
To be eligible, you must be between 18-65 years of age, have contributed to the CPP/QPP plan during the defined contributory period, and have a severe and prolonged disability that prevents you from working. This determination of disability is made through the information in your application, a medical report completed by your physician or oncologist, and the assessment of this information by the medical assessors at the program.
The CPP program has a special application for those who have a cancer that cannot be cured or adequately treated and who have a prognosis of less than 6 months.
You must apply by mail. It takes up to four months to process applications (except for the CPP-D application for Terminal Illness, processed sooner). It is a good idea to apply for CPP or QPP Disability as soon as you are aware of your inability to return to work for a prolonged period. If you are also receiving LTD benefits through work, you should check with your employer about when or if you should apply for the CPP-D or QPP-D benefit.