Income that could jeopardized CPP disability payments

Been on disability going on 10 years. Have had no income except ODSB and loans from family. I wrote a book before going on disability and get very small royalty payments that fall below the amount of income I have to report ($5800). Getting approved was emotional Hell and I don’t want to go through that again. Now I have a one-time opportunity to write for a company that liked my book. I’m worried that payment for this project would result in review or even cancellation of my benefits, even though it is not regular employment, an opportunity that will likely never arise again. I feel able to do this project because it can be completed on my schedule, based on my health on any given day and the deadline is flexible. Is there a way to do this project and receive this income legally without jeopardizing my benefits? Can it be treated as the sale of an asset–if they were to buy the completed work outright? Can the money be legally disbursed over years if the company is willing? Is there another option? Does any kind of income affect my benefits, or is it just employment? Thank you.

You should contact CPPD and ask. I found them extremely helpful when I contacted them about CESB (CERB for students). I felt really good about talking with the staff there, they were awesome. I’m sure they would help you and tell you how you can spread the income over the years if possible, or if necessary.

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I think the only way projects like this become a problem is if they generate income well above the 5-16k allowed by CPPD. In my experience, CPPD is very open to speaking with people who wan to try work projects like this. They have a vocational program designed to allow people to try things out. They will monitor the situation and won’t cut of payment even if you go over the usual amount. If it turns out this won’t result in regular income or employment. ODSP might be much less forgiving and you could lose that income. you would need to double check with your case manager.

David Brannen

Disability Lawyer with Resolute Legal

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