Do You Qualify for the Child Disability Benefit?

Posted on March 10, 2021

Did you know that, if you receive the Child Disability Benefit, you can receive up to $2,886 a year of tax-free support from the Canadian government? This would amount to a total of $240.50 per child.

If you’re considering applying for the Child Disability Benefit, then you might have questions about this benefit, such as:

“How much do you get for the Child Disability Benefit?”

“What child disability types would make me eligible for this benefit?”

“When is the disabilities benefit paid out?”

You are already doing so much for your child with a disability. Getting that extra support would be so helpful.

That’s why we’ve put together this article. Once you know everything you need to about the Child Disability Benefit, you can finally get the money you need to support your child. Read on to learn more.

What is the Child Disability Benefit?

To understand if you qualify for the Child Disability Benefit, it’s important to understand what it is. The Child Disability Benefit is a tax-free program that was started by the federal government to help families raise their or children with disabilities who are under 18.

The CDB is administered by the CRA, also known as the Canadian Revenue Agency.

Specifically, the CDB applies when your child has a disability that causes prolonged and severe impairment that affects mental or physical functions.

When it comes to answering the question, “How much do you get for the Child Disability Benefit?” the answer is that it depends.

Do You Qualify?

When it comes to whether or not you qualify for the Child Disability Benefit, this depends on several factors. One of them is whether you, as a parent or caregiver, are eligible for the larger Canada child benefit.

Additionally, your child must be eligible for the separate disability tax credit.

You must review the eligibility for both yourself and your child. If one of you is eligible and the other is not, you won't receive the Child Disability Benefit.

Are You Eligible for the Canada Child Benefit?

You need to be eligible for the Canada Child Benefit to then be eligible for the Child Disability Benefit. So, let's start with how you can be eligible for the Canada Child Benefit. You need to meet all the conditions required.

This means that you have to:

  • Be living with your child, who is under 18 years old
  • Be the primary person who is responsible for the upbringing and care of your child
  • For tax purposes, be a Canadian resident

Additionally, there are some requirements for you or your spouse/common-law partner. These include that at least one of you is:

  • A permanent resident
  • A Canadian citizen
  • A temporary resident who, for the past 18 months has lived in Canada
  • In addition to the above point, someone who has a valid permit for the 19th month
  • A protected person
  • An Indigenous person who, under the Indian Act, meets the “Indian” definition

Also, keep in mind that, if you are a foster parent you will not be eligible for the CCB during the months when you receive Children’s Special Allowances (CSA).

Additionally, if you care for and live with a child under a close relationship program, you may be able to receive CCB. However, this is only the case if you do not receive CSA for that child.

Are You The Primary Person?

One of the most important requirements for your being eligible for the CCB and CDB are that you are the primary person who is responsible for the upbringing and care of your child. While the other requirements on the above list are easier to understand, this one is a bit more complicated.

By definition, you are considered this primary person if you arrange for child care when it’s needed, make sure your child’s medical needs are all met, and supervise your child’s everyday needs and activities.

However, it does get a little more complicated than this.

For example, you may be asking yourself the question: “Both my spouse/common-law partner and I take care of our child. How do I know which one of us is considered primarily responsible for our child?”

Which Parent is Responsible

If your child is raised by both female and male parents, then the female parent is usually the parent who is considered primarily responsible for the upbringing and care of the child. For this reason, she should be the parent who applies for CCB, after which she can receive the disabilities benefit.

However, if the male is the adult who is primarily responsible for the upbringing and care of the child, he should apply.

When he applies, he should include a letter written by and signed by the female parent. In this letter, she should say that the male parent is the primarily responsible parent for all their children.

If you are looking to receive the benefit and you are in a same-sex marriage, then only one of you should apply for the CCB. Either of you can apply.

Custody and Benefits

If you and your spouse/common-law partner have certain custody arrangements, this will also have an impact on what money you receive. 

First, if you have equal shared custody of your child, then you need to let the Canada Revenue Agency know.

Once you’ve done this, the CRA will determine what amount you receive based on how much you and the other parent make separately. This way, you will receive the amount you would need alone based on your income.

This amount will be split by 50% for each of you.

If you have the sole custody of your child, you will receive the money and the other parent will not.

It is the opposite situation if the other parent has the main custody.

In this case, the amount received will depend on the income of the parent who receives the benefit, not the income of the other parent or both incomes combined.

Of course, custody arrangements can sometimes be a bit more complicated than what we’ve covered. If this is the case, then you will receive the CCB and CDB when the child is with you.

Then, when the child is living with the other parent, they will receive the CCB and CBD.

If your custody arrangements ever change, you need to let the CRA know. This way, they can adjust payments as needed.

Is Your Child Eligible for the Disabilities Benefit?

To know if your child is eligible for the Disabilities Benefit, they also need to be eligible to receive the disability tax credit. This tax credit comes with eligibility criteria. The person who receives the disability tax credit, also known as the DTB, must meet at least one of the following:

  • Need therapy that is life-sustaining
  • Be blind
  • Have a significant restriction in two or more of the basic activities of daily living
  • Have marked restriction in two or more of the basic activities of daily living

Note that, when it comes to the third criterion, this includes vision impairment. Additionally, the impairment your child has needs to meet certain criteria, too. First of all, the impairment must be present between 90% and 100% of the time.

Also, the impairment must be prolonged. This means that it has lasted or is expected to last for a continuous period that is at least 12 months long.

Now, we’ll review how these criteria exactly work in each situation, so you can know if your child qualifies for the child disability benefit.

Needing Therapy That is Life-Sustaining

In order to qualify as needing therapy that is life-sustaining, there are certain requirements that your child has to meet when it comes to their disability. For one thing, it has to be the case that therapy is needed to support a type of vital function.

Additionally, your child will require this therapy at least 3 times a week, with a total weekly minimum of at least 14 hours.


Even if your child uses medication or corrective lenses that make their vision much better, they may still qualify for being blind. It depends on two criteria. The first is that, in both eyes, the visual acuity must be at most 20/200 (or 6/60).

This is using the Snellen Chart or an equivalent type of measurement.

Additionally, in the field of vision, the greatest diameter in both eyes must be at most 20 degrees.

Basic Activities of Daily Living

To understand the last two criteria, it’s important to understand what the basic activities of daily living are. These include hearing, speaking, eliminating (bladder or bowel functions), walking, dressing, feeding, and having the mental functions needed for daily life.

Significant Restriction

If your child has a significant restriction with the basic activities of daily living, this means that they have to be significantly restricted with at least two of these activities or with vision too.

They must suffer from these issues despite having devices, medication, and therapy.

They must be affected between 90% and 100% of the time. They’re not markedly restricted, but they’re significantly restricted.

Marked Restriction

If your child has a marked restriction, it’s similar to them having significant restrictions. However, the impairment is even more serious. This is because they take an “inordinate amount of time” or are fully unable to do one or more of the activities of daily living.

“Inordinate amount of time” means taking three times as long as it would ordinarily take to do something or more.

They must suffer from these issues despite having devices, medication, and therapy.


As you can imagine, it can sometimes be difficult to judge if your child is eligible for the disability tax credit and the CBD. To find out more information about whether your child is eligible, you can visit the Canadian Government page on this subject here.

You can also ask your medical practitioner to provide the Disability Tax Credit Certificate, Form T2201. This will demonstrate to the CRA that they are eligible. It's much easier than having to figure it out yourself.

How Much Do You Get for Child Disability Benefit?

If you’ve gone through this article and found that you are eligible for the Child Disability Benefit because you’re eligible for the Canada Child Benefit and your child is eligible for the Disabilities Tax Credit, then you’re probably wondering how much you will get.

The maximum amount you can receive is $2,886 a year. Because the payments are provided to you month-to-month, you could receive up to $240.50 a month.

The amount you received depends on the number of children who are eligible, your marital status, and your adjusted family net income (AFNI).

Need More Information?

It's no easy task taking the step to finding out if your child qualifies for the Child Disability Benefit.  You are already dealing with so much.  While you are a star in that young persons life, it's important to remember to take care of yourself too.  Often times caregivers to children with disabilities leave their own financial health and well being to the wayside.  It's just not a priority.  More to that, there's a plethora of areas that need attention whether it be insurance, loans, credit scores and cards, mortgages and investing.  That's where Insurdinary comes in.  We are a leading financial comparison platform and can and will provide you with the best possible quotes on the market for all of the above sectors.  We are here to help.  Reach out to us today.

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