Guaranteed Income Supplement – Apply
In December 2017, Service Canada implemented a process to automatically enroll seniors who are eligible to receive the GIS. If you can be automatically enrolled, Service Canada will send you a notification letter the month after you turn 64.
If you did not receive a letter from Service Canada informing you that you were selected for automatic enrolment, and you wish to start receiving your OAS pension and the GIS at age 65, you should apply for them right away.
Gather your personal information
Before you begin, please ensure you have:
- your Social Insurance Number (SIN)
- information about your spouse or common-law partner if you have one (Social Insurance Number, date of birth)
- information about where you have lived since age 18
- your banking information to sign up for direct deposit
- the date you would like your pension to start
- your reduction in employment or pension income ready, if applicable
Submit your application
You can choose to apply online or by filling a paper application.
To apply online, you must:
- be at least one month past your 64th birthday
- not be receiving an OAS pension
- not yet have applied for the OAS pension
- live in Canada
- not have a legal representative on your account (for example, someone with power of attorney)
If any of the above does not apply to you, you will need to complete the paper application.
Apply now by signing in or registering for a My Service Canada Account (MSCA).
If you don't have a My Service Canada Account (MSCA), you can register for one. You'll receive a personal access code to complete your registration.
It's important to gather the information you need before you begin, because once you start the application, you cannot save it and continue later. Your session will expire after 20 minutes of inactivity (this time starts when your computer mouse stops moving and resets when your mouse is moved).
If you choose to fill a paper application:
- print and complete the paper form Application for the OAS and the GIS (ISP-3550)
- include certified true copies of the required documents
- mail the application to Service Canada, or
- bring it to a Service Canada office
If you go to a Service Canada office, an employee can certify your documents free of charge.
Applying for Guaranteed Income Supplement if you are already receiving an OAS pension
If you are 65 and are receiving the OAS pension, you should apply for the GIS as soon as possible so you don't lose any payments. (You may be eligible to receive a retroactive payment up to a maximum of 11 months from the date we receive your application.)
You must apply in writing for the GIS. Complete and mail the Application for the Guaranteed Income Supplement (ISP-3025) for the payment year that applies to you and include certified true copies of the required documentation. You will find this form on the Old Age Security forms page.
To find out where to mail your application form, see Returning the form.
Sources of income and deductions
Use the information slips issued to you for income tax purposes, as well as your federal Income Tax and Benefit Return, to report the following income and deductions:
- Canada Pension Plan (CPP) or Quebec Pension Plan (QPP) benefits
- other pension income, such as private pensions, superannuation and foreign pension income
- Registered Retirement Savings Plans (RRSPs) that you cashed during the year
- Employment Insurance benefits
- interest and other investment income
- capital gains and taxable Canadian dividends
- net income from any rental properties
- net employment income minus the following deductions:
- your CPP or QPP contributions (including CPP or QPP enhancement contributions), and your Employment Insurance (EI) premiums
- net self-employment income minus the following deductions:
- your CPP or QPP contributions (including CPP or QPP enhancement contributions) on self-employment and your EI premiums
- other income from sources such as workers' compensation payments and alimony, and
- other deductions, such as union dues, RRSP deduction, moving expenses and other employment expenses
Enhancements to the Guaranteed Income Supplement and the Allowance
Effective July 2020, the following enhancements to the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) earnings exemption will come into effect:
- Expanded eligibility for the earnings exemption to include both employment and self-employment income;
- An increase to the amount of the full exemption from $3,500 to $5,000 per year for each GIS or Allowance recipient, as well as their spouse or common-law partner; and,
- A new partial exemption of 50%, to apply on up to $10,000 of annual employment and self-employment income beyond the new $5,000 threshold for each GIS or Allowance recipient, as well as their spouse or common-law partner.
The enhanced earnings exemption will become effective for the July 2020 to June 2021 payment period and will apply to income made in the 2019 calendar year or later. Upon receipt of your annual income (and/or your spouse’s or common-law partner’s income), Service Canada will automatically apply the new GIS earnings exemption. The maximum amount of earnings that can be exempted is $10,000.
You will find instructions on how to report your income and deductions on the Instruction Sheet for the Guaranteed Income Supplement or Statement of Income for the Allowance or Allowance for the Survivor that is available on the Old Age Security forms page.
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