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Sponsorship of parents, children, spouses (common-law, conjugal, same sex), refugees.

Applying for ODSP for Sponsored Mum 

Posts: 1

Posted On: 5/5/2017
Posts: 1
I have sponsored my mum 5 years ago who is now a Canadian citizen.

Unfortunately she had a stroke and fortunately she was admitted into a Long term care facility this year.

I am unable to afford $1800 a month for the long term care charges and was wondering if anyone can give me some suggestions regarding applying for ODSP.

I know the onus is on me to bare the cost but am unable to do so. If she qualifies for ODSP can someone tell me how will I pay back the Government and how much of interest is charged.

Will I be able to pay back in installments over a period of time?

Would appreciate if someone could write to me with suggestions.

Thank you.
Posts: 2510

Posted On: 5/11/2017
Posts: 2510

Thank you for sharing your mother's situation and your question with us.

We can appreciate that you would be concerned about this situation and be interested in finding out what your options are.

You can find some detailed information regarding the procedures and policies relating to sponsored people and their sponsors in the Ontario Works Policy Directives- 3.11 Sponsored Immigrants document.

The sponsor's obligation to provide for the basic requirements of the sponsored immigrant continues for the full sponsorship period even if the sponsored immigrant becomes a Canadian citizen.


Repayment of Social Assistance by Defaulting Sponsors

Under IRPA, all social assistance received by a family class sponsored immigrant is considered a federal and provincial debt of the sponsor. Financial assistance received from Assistance for Children with Severe Disabilities is not considered "social assistance" under IRPA.
Sponsors who default on their sponsorship obligation need to know the amount of social assistance that they are required to repay. Prior to determining the debt amount for the defaulting sponsor, staff must verify the term and expiry of the sponsorship period and how long the sponsor was in default.


In these cases, the debt amount is calculated by using the social assistance amount that applies to the sponsored person(s) only, less any earnings, income, unassigned support payments received and any overpayment, sponsorship or other deductions made during the sponsorship period. In addition, any outstanding overpayments that have not been recovered also must be deducted. The net amount is the sponsorship debt which the sponsor must repay.


Deferral of Sponsorship Debt Recovery

There are certain circumstances where sponsors may be deferred from debt recovery activity. In such cases, sponsorship debt continues to accrue until the end of the sponsorship period.

Sponsorship debt recovery may be deferred in cases where:

- the sponsored person is temporarily or permanently waived from the requirement to pursue support from their sponsor;
- the sponsor is incapacitated;
- the sponsor has undergone bankruptcy and the entire sponsorship debt was covered by the bankruptcy discharge;
- the sponsor has documented extraordinary circumstances;
- an open eligibility investigation has commenced for the sponsored person;
- CIC confirms the validity of an undertaking is under review;

Generally, ODSP will calculate the debt and will refer the case to the Overpayment Recovery Unit (ORU). The ORU informs sponsor by letter that sponsored family member(s) has received social assistance.

The purpose of letter is to reach an agreement on how the sponsor will resume providing for the sponsored family member(s), or to start the collection of the debt.

The next steps may include the ORU sending further letters to the sponsor or by referring the case to Canada Revenue Agency's (CRA) Refund Set-Off Program.

In these cases, the CRA can garnish (take over) any Income Tax refunds.

Additional steps may additionally include measures such as court action.

We suggest that it is best that you contact the nearest Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) office for some information specific to this situation.

I hope this information is helpful. Please let us know if you have further questions and if there is any follow up to your question/situation.

Settlement.Org Content and Information/Referral Specialist, CIRS