OAS Pension

Old Age Security (OAS) provides a pension benefit.


  • age 65+
  • 10+ years of residence in Canada after reaching age 18
  • ignores employment history
  • available even if working (not affected by employment history)


official payments

  • taxable
  • benefit is 1/40 of full monthly pension for each year you lived in Canada after your 18th birthday
  • indexed to Consumer Price Index quarterly (adjusted in January, April, July, October)
  • taxable benefit = min{40, calendar years of residency} / 40
  • late applicants who meet the other eligibility requirements can receive retroactive payments for the month of application and up to 11 preceding months
  • you can request that benefits be cancelled and reinstated later
    • no retroactive payments
  • you can receive payments outside Canada indefinitely if you lived in Canada for 20+ years after reaching age 18
    • else paid for the month of departure and up to six additional months
      • may be reinstated if you return to live in Canada and meet the other conditions of eligibility
  • can apply up to 6 months prior to eligibility with proof of age and legal residence status
  • reapply annually
Monthly Benefit Average (Jan 2007) Maximum (Jan 2007) Maximum Annual Net Income
OAS Pension $466.98 $491.93 $102,865


  • higher income pensioners repay some or all of their benefit
  • clawback of 15% of net income above $63,511 (2007) → no benefit if net income ≥ $102,865 (2007)
    • each spouse considered separately → consider income splitting
  • repayment amounts usually deducted from the payments before issued


  • monthly pension for all Canadians and legal residents age 65+ who apply and meet residency requirements
  • administered by Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
  • funded from general tax revenues
  • benefits adjusted quarterly, indexed to CPI
  • benefits are taxable
  • application process
    • can apply up to six months before eligibility
    • provide proof of age and legal residence status


  • start in the month after the month you meet the requirements
    • can be retroactive for up to 12 months if you apply late
  • can receive benefits outside Canada if you lived here for 20+ years after age 18
    • else for a maximum of six months, restarting in the month of your return
  • you earn 1/40 of the maximum pension for each full year of residence (minimum of 10 years)
    • full pension after 40 years of residence after age 18
    • partial pension if 10+ consecutive years of residence after age 18

Clawback For High Income Earners

  • clawback starts if your net income > $60,806 (2005)
  • full clawback (no benefit) if your net income > $98,547 (2005)
  • calculations ignore your spouse's income → use income splitting

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