Summary of Policy

The amount of income support payable to an applicant or recipient who receives board and lodging from the same source is calculated on a monthly basis and determined by the family size, age of dependants, geographic location and the individual circumstances of the benefit unit. Income support is calculated differently for recipients with a current immigration sponsorship agreement.

Legislative Authority

Section 11 of the ODSP Act
Sections 23, 24, 29, 33, 35, and 40 of the ODSP Regulation

Summary of Directive

  • When calculating a board and lodging amount, the family size, age of dependants, the geographic location and individual benefit unit circumstances must be considered.
  • Immigration sponsorship agreements must be considered when calculating a board and lodging amount. The living arrangements and any support from the sponsor are to be considered when determining the board and lodging amount.
  • Periods of ineligibility can cause a reduction or removal of the non-compliant member from the board and lodging calculation depending on the issue of non-compliance.

Intent of Policy

To ensure that recipients receive an appropriate board and lodging amount based on their family size and circumstances.

Application of Policy

Verification of living arrangements must be requested at the time of application and at each subsequent update review.

All ODSP recipients who are in board and lodging arrangements receive the maximum board and lodging rate subject to any applicable income deductions. An annual adjustments tied to inflation will be applied to the board and lodge rates each July.

To determine who is included in the benefit unit for purposes of calculating income support please refer to Directives 6.1 Basic Needs Calculation, 2.1 Who is Eligible: Dependent Adults, 2.2 Who is Eligible: Dependent Children and 2.3 Spouse.

What is Board and Lodging

A board and lodging situation is one in which a recipient receives food and shelter from the same source.

In situations where the recipient’s circumstances are not clearly defined as either rent or board and lodging, the shelter arrangement is determined by reviewing the recipient’s food preparation practices.

If the landlord purchases and prepares the food, the recipient is a boarder. If the recipient purchases and prepares food separately for himself/herself and his/her dependants, then the recipient is in a rental situation. To be considered a renter, a recipient does not necessarily need to be living in self-contained quarters, but must purchase and prepare his/her own food.

A co-resident calculation does not apply to recipients living in a board and lodging situation. A co-resident calculation is applied to recipients who have their shelter amount assessed separately from their basic needs amount.

Board and Lodging Amount

Annual adjustments tied to inflation will be applied to the board and lodge amounts for singles and families each July. All ODSP applicants/recipients in a board and lodging situation will have their budgetary requirements calculated based on the maximum board and lodging rate, as follows:

  • $924 for a single person;
  • $1,376, if there is a spouse included in the benefit unit; if both spouses are aged 65 and are not each a person with a disability, in receipt of CPP-D or grandparented from FBA;
  • $1,840, if both spouses meet the double disabled rates criteria (e.g. are each a person with a disability, in receipt of CPP-D or grandparented from FBA).
  • $71 automatic special boarder allowance per benefit unit.

In addition to the board and lodging amount and as part of budgetary requirements, the recipient may also receive:

  • An amount for a special diet allowance and/or pregnancy/breast-feeding nutritional allowance if he/she or any member of the benefit unit meets eligibility requirements for those allowances. (See Directives 6.4 Special Diet Allowance and ;6.5 Pregnancy/Breast-Feeding Nutritional Allowance for details).
  • A Remote Communities Allowance for recipients who live north of the 50th parallel and are without year-round road access (see Remote Communities Allowance table).

If the applicant/recipient has dependants other than a spouse, the following amounts are added to the income support:

Additional Amounts for Dependants Other than a Spouse

Benefit unit with no spouse included

Dependant18 years and over13 - 17 years0 - 12 years
First dependant$518$313$272

For each additional dependant, add to the amount in item 1


Benefit unit with a spouse included

Dependant18 years and over13 - 17 years0 - 12 years
For each dependant, add$255$155$114

Remote Communities Allowance

Number of Dependants other than a SpouseRecipientRecipient and Spouse

For each additional dependant, add $99.

Sponsored Immigrants living with their sponsors and eligible for shelter costs

If an applicant/recipient is living with a defaulting sponsor (or in a place owned or controlled by the sponsor) and the sponsorship agreement is still in effect, shelter costs can only be paid if:

  • the sponsor is in receipt of Ontario Works, ODSP, the Guaranteed Income Supplement under the Old Age Security Act or Gains-A;
  • there is a breakdown in the sponsorship relationship due to family violence and/or abuse;
  • the sponsored immigrant:
    • has a legal obligation to pay shelter costs (e.g. the sponsored immigrant is a lessee or named as a co-owner on a deed/mortgage), or
    • satisfies the Director that he/she will not be allowed to remain in the current residence unless he or she pays shelter costs.

    Any actual support that the sponsored immigrant receives from the sponsor will be treated as income and deducted from the sponsored immigrant's income support.

    Sponsored Immigrants living with their sponsors and not eligible for shelter costs

    Where the sponsored immigrant is living with his/her sponsor and is not eligible for shelter costs, a sponsorship deduction will be applied.

    The sponsorship deduction is the greater of:

    • the amount the sponsor is paying to the applicant/recipient, and
    • the amount of income support that would otherwise be calculated under section 30 of the ODSP Regulation less the applicable basic needs amount.

    Example - A single recipient who is living with his/her sponsor, not eligible for shelter costs, and not receiving any funds from the sponsor will have their income support calculated in the following manner:

    Board and Lodge - $995
    Less: Amount calculated under ODSP Reg. s. 40 - $556
    Total Income Support - $439

    See Directive 2.5, Tourists, Immigrants, Refugees and Deportees

    Related Directives