InfoCapsule 17: Assistance holdback amount

From: Employment and Social Development Canada

Disclaimer: RDSP issuers

The information contained on this page is technical in nature. The target audience are issuers of the:

  • Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP)
  • Canada Disability Savings Grant (CDSG)
  • Canada Disability Savings Bond (CDSB)

For general information, visit the RDSP page.

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Alternate format

A PDF version of the InfoCapsules for RDSP providers is available on the index page.

List of acronyms
Assistance holdback amount
Canada Disability Savings Bond
Canada Disability Savings Grant
Disability assistance payment
Disability Tax Credit
Lifetime disability assistance payment
Registered Disability Savings Plan
Specified Disability Savings Plan


The assistance holdback amount (AHA) is the total amount of Canada Disability Savings Grant (CDSG) and Canada Disability Savings Bond (CDSB) paid into a Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) within a 10-year period before an event; less any amount of CDSG and CDSB paid into the RDSP during the same 10-year period that has been previously repaid to the Government of Canada.

The CDSG and CDSB paid in a 10-year period, minus any CDSG and CDSB already repaid within that same 10-year period, equals the AHA.

When an event occurs, the AHA is subject to repayment. An event can be:

  1. a withdrawal from the RDSP (which includes a disability assistance payment (DAP) and a lifetime disability assistance payment (LDAP))
  2. the death of the beneficiary
  3. the closure of the RDSP
  4. the non-compliance of the RDSP
  5. the loss of Disability Tax Credit (DTC) eligibility of the beneficiary (the AHA only becomes subject to repayment if the RDSP is closed during a period of DTC ineligibility)

Exception: In the event of a withdrawal, there is no repayment of the AHA if an RDSP is designated as a Specified Disability Savings Plan (SDSP).

The AHA period moves forward in time with the RDSP

Table 1: The AHA period moves forward in time with the RDSP
2010 $1,000
2011 $1,000
2012 $1,000
2013 $0
2014 $0
2015 $1,000
2016 $1,000
2017 $1,000
2018 $1,000
2019 $0
2020 $1,000
2021 $0
2022 $0
2023 $0
2024 $1,000
2025 $1,000
2026 $0
2027 $0
2028 $1,000
2029 $1,000
2030 $1,000
2031 $1,000
2032 $1,000
2033 $0
2034 $0
2035 $1,000
2036 $1,000
2037 $0
  • An RDSP is opened on February 3, 2010
  • First event occurs on December 31, 2020:
    • the 10-year AHA period is from January 1, 2011, to December 31, 2020
  • A second event occurs October 25, 2036:
    • the 10-year AHA period is from October 26, 2026, to October 25, 2036

AHA reminder: It is not possible to access the CDSG or the CDSB available outside the AHA period, without triggering a repayment; the AHA period will always apply.

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