Ontario Works is a social assistance program designed to help Ontarians who don’t have enough money to cover their basic living expenses.
The program also goes a step further in helping eligible individuals find jobs and providing them with training if required.
Ontario Works is not the only welfare benefit available. Residents of Ontario who have a disability may be eligible for the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP).
Below I discuss Ontario Works payment dates in 2023, how to apply for the benefit, Ontario Works amounts, and the payment schedule for other benefits, including Ontario Trillium and ODSP.
Ontario Works Payment Dates 2023
Ontario Works benefits are generally paid out on the last business day of the previous month.
This payment schedule ensures that recipients have access to the funds by the first day of each month at the latest.
The payment dates for Ontario Works in 2023 are:
|Benefit Month||Ontario Works Payment Date|
|January||December 30, 2022|
|February||January 31, 2023|
|March||February 28, 2023|
|April||March 31, 2023|
|May||April 28, 2023|
|June||May 31, 2023|
|July||June 30, 2023|
|August||July 31, 2023|
|September||August 31, 2023|
|October||September 29, 2023|
|November||October 31, 2023|
|December||November 30, 2023|
The monthly payments are sent to your bank account using direct deposit.
If you don’t have access to a bank account, you can have your Ontario Works benefit loaded onto an RBC Right Pay card, and use that for purchases or ATM withdrawals.
What is Ontario Works?
Ontario Works is a form of financial assistance provided to residents of Ontario (Toronto, Windsor, London, Ottawa, Hamilton, etc.) who need help to pay for food and shelter.
This social assistance program also helps recipients find jobs.
In addition to providing a monthly income and job supports, Ontario Works also offers health benefits, including:
- Dental coverage for children
- Prescription drug coverage
- Eye examinations
- Assistive devices
- Extended health benefits and more
Eligibility Requirements for Ontario Works
To qualify for Ontario Works, you must be at least 16 years of age and live in Ontario.
You will also be required to show that you do not have enough money to cover your basic needs.
Lastly, a pre-requisite of this benefit is that recipients must engage in activities relating to finding and keeping a job.
How To Apply for Ontario Works
Apply for Ontario Works online to get started.
You will need to provide information relating to your family members, including their social insurance numbers, OHIP cards, banking details, and tax returns.
After an Ontario Works caseworker has reviewed your file, they will call you to schedule an appointment (usually within four business days).
If you are applying in Toronto, you can call 1-888-465-4478 (toll-free) or 416-338-8888 and select option 3.
After your application is approved, you will be assigned a caseworker to whom you report to.
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How Much Does Ontario Works Pay?
Ontario Works amounts vary depending on the size of your family, your housing costs, and your income.
Financial assistance is provided to cover:
Basic Needs: This includes expenses like food, clothing, etc.
|Number of Children/Dependent Adults||Single||Couple|
|1 child aged 17 or under||$360||$494|
|1 dependent adult 18 or older||$623||$652|
|2 children under 17||$360||$494|
|1 child under 17 + 1 dependent adult 18 or older||$623||$652|
|2 dependent adults 18 or older||$781||$826|
For each additional dependent adult 18 or older, you get an extra $175.
For additional children aged 17 and under, there are no extra benefits.
Shelter Benefits: This covers expenses related to renting, mortgage payments, property taxes, utilities, heating costs, etc.
The maximum Ontario Works amounts for shelter are:
|Family Size||Maximum Monthly OW Shelter Allowance|
If you are living in a room and board situation, the rates are as follows:
A special boarder allowance of $71 is also paid.
Older recipients who are 65 years or older are paid an Advanced Age Item benefit ($44).
And, if you have a guide dog, you may qualify for an extra $84.
What Does Ontario Works Cover?
As already mentioned, Ontario Works provides monthly financial benefits.
In addition, recipients also receive employment supports including:
- Access to job workshops, training, job banks, etc.
- Access to basic education
- Resume writing services
- Referrals to job counselling
You can find some Ontario Works Training programs in Toronto here.
There are also health benefits available, including prescription drugs, vision care, hearing aids, diabetics supplies, surgical supplies, and several other health-related benefits.
Is Ontario Works Taxable?
Ontario Works benefit payments are not included in your income when you are being assessed for welfare benefits.
You also do not pay taxes on these amounts when you file your tax return.
That said, ensure you file your annual income and benefits tax return, as this is used to determine whether you are eligible for other benefits such as GST/HST credits and the Canada Child Benefit.
Ontario Trillium Benefit Payment Dates
The Ontario Trillium Benefit comprises three payments, including:
- Ontario Sales Tax Credit
- Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit, and
- Northern Ontario Energy Credit
Ontario Trillium Benefit is paid out on these dates in 2023:
- January 10, 2023
- February 10, 2023
- March 10, 2023
- April 6, 2023
- May 10, 2023
- June 9, 2023
- July 10, 2023
- August 10, 2023
- September 8, 2023
- October 10, 2023
- November 10, 2023
- December 8, 2023
Ontario Disability Support Program Payment Dates 2023
If you have a disability, you may qualify for the ODSP on these dates in 2023:
|Benefit Month||ODSP Payment Date|
|January 2023||January 31, 2023|
|February 2023||February 28, 2023|
|March 2023||March 31, 2023|
|April 2023||April 28, 2023|
|May 2023||May 31, 2023|
|June 2023||June 30, 2023|
|July 2023||July 31, 2023|
|August 2023||August 31, 2023|
|September 2023||September 29, 2023|
|October 2023||October 31, 2023|
|November 2023||November 30, 2023|
|December 2023||To be determined|
Ontario Works Payment FAQs
When is Ontario Works cancelled?
You can continue receiving Ontario Works while working and earning income. The first $200 you earn does not impact your benefits. 50 cents is deducted for every dollar earned above $200 a month. If you refuse to work for no good reason, Ontario Works may be cancelled.
What is the maximum amount from Ontario Works?
The maximum benefit you can get from Ontario Works for a single individual is $733 per month for basic needs and shelter.
When does Ontario Works get deposited?
Ontario Works payment for each month is generally deposited on the last business day of the previous month. For example, your January 2023 benefit is paid on December 30, 2022.
What courses and training programs does Ontario Works cover?
Ontario Works provides funds for training-related programs and supports. Some of the training programs available in Toronto include Admin Assistant Diplomas, Office professional program, computer and Customer Service Training programs, Accounting and Finance, etc.