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Disability Help: What Qualifies as a Disability?

The lack of information and complexity in applying for Canadian disability benefits – primarily the Disability Tax Credit (DTC) – are two key reasons why 500,000 Canadians are not receiving their disability benefits.

The third reason Disability Tax Credits go unclaimed is the ambiguity as to what qualifies as a disability.

The ‘disability’ in Disability Tax Credit is misleading. People living with Crohn’s disease, depression, diabetes, ADHD, or similar conditions often don’t categorize their medical issues as ‘disabilities’.

But these conditions qualify for the Disability Tax Credit, the Child Disability Tax Credit, and Canada Child Benefit, in addition to a long list of other physical, mental, and learning conditions. This isn’t a guaranteed list, but a collection of medical conditions & illnesses that have qualified for the DTC:

If you see a medical condition on this list that a family member or loved one isn’t receiving disability benefits for, we can find you the family support you need. Visit our How to Apply for Disability page here.

For more Canadian disability resources, visit our handy Canadian Disability Benefits page.

Disability Tax Credit Eligibility

Every Disability Tax Credit application is unique, meaning there’s no guarantee a person qualifies for disability benefits even if their condition is listed above.

In the broadest terms of DTC eligibility, however, three conditions are typically consistent:

  • You must have a significant impairment in physical and/or mental functions.
  • The impairment is long-term, and has been persistent or will remain persistent for an extended period of at least one year.
  • A qualified practitioner must verify the impairment is severe and prolonged, certified by completing the Disability Tax Credit certificate (CRA Form T2201).

Child Disability Benefit & Canada Child Benefit Eligibility

The Child Disability Benefit (CDB) is a tax-free benefit for Canadian families who care for a child under 18 that is eligible for the Disability Tax Credit.

Eligibility for the CDB is similar to the three conditions required for the standard DTC: significant impairment of physical or mental functions, it’s long-term (at least a year), and is certified by a medical practitioner.

The Child Disability Benefit is paid monthly to families that are eligible for the Canada Child Benefit, and also as a supplement to the children’s special allowances program.

See if your child qualifies for the Child Disability Benefit by filling out our free assessment .

For information on the new Canada Child Benefit,visit our dedicated guide for a detailed breakdown.

Need help claiming the Disability Tax Credit? Apply Now!

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