Old Age Security - Apply
Automatic enrolment for Old Age Security pension
In April 2013, Service Canada implemented a process to automatically enroll seniors who are eligible to receive the OAS pension. In December 2017, automatic enrolment was expanded to include the GIS.
If you can be automatically enrolled, Service Canada will send you a notification letter the month after you turn 64.
In deciding when to apply for your OAS pension, consider your personal financial situation as well as the following scenarios, if they apply to you.
If you did not receive a letter from Service Canada informing you that you were selected for automatic enrolment, you must apply in writing for the OAS pension. Complete and mail the Application for the OAS and the GIS (ISP-3550) to the address listed in Returning the form.
The month after you turned 64 years old, you received from Service Canada
- A letter informing you that you were selected for automatic enrolment
- You will not have to apply for your OAS pension provided that the information in your letter is accurate.
- If you wish to delay your OAS pension, your GIS benefit or both, you may do so by:
- accessing your My Service Canada account and following the directions; or
- signing and returning the automatic enrolment letter by mail.
- A letter informing you that you could be eligible for the OAS pension
- You will need to apply for your OAS pension as soon as possible by completing and mailing the application form enclosed in your letter.
The month after you turned 64 years old, you did not receive a letter from Service Canada
- If you wish to start receiving your OAS pension at age 65, you should apply for your OAS pension right away.
- If you have already reached 65, and you wish to start your OAS pension immediately, you should apply as soon as possible so you don't lose any payments (we may be able to give you a retroactive payment for up to a maximum of 11 months from the date we receive your application).
You delayed receipt of your Old Age Security pension
If you chose to delay receipt of your OAS pension, you can apply up to 11 months before the date you want your OAS pension to start.
If you did not receive a letter from Service Canada informing you that you were selected for automatic enrolment, you must apply in writing for the OAS pension. Complete and mail the Application for the OAS and the GIS (ISP-3550) to a Service Canada location near you. See the form for more information
You were unable to apply when you became eligible
If, due to a medical condition, you were unable to apply earlier or to ask someone to apply on your behalf, please contact us to obtain the Declaration of Incapacity form. If you meet all of the eligibility requirements, completing and returning this form may allow you to receive your pension with an earlier start date.
Can someone else contact Service Canada on my behalf?
You can authorize a person to give information to and receive information from Service Canada on your behalf by signing in to My Service Canada Account (MSCA) or by completing the form Consent to Communicate Information to an Authorized Person (ISP-1603OAS), and mailing it to the Service Canada office listed on the page Returning the form.
This form does not provide authority for the person to apply for benefits on your behalf, change your payment address, or request or change the withholding of tax.
If an individual is incapable of managing his or her own affairs, another person or agency (a trustee) may be appointed to act on the individual’s behalf. For information on third-party administration for homeless seniors, see Supporting Homeless Seniors Program: How to act as a third-party administrator.
If you are incarcerated
If you are incarcerated, you can still apply for your OAS pension, but your payments will be suspended for the duration of your incarceration.
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