Common Questions

How are BC disability benefits changing on December 1, 2015?
Update: For information on the September 1, 2016 increase to PWD benefit rates and the changes to the bus pass program, see the Disability Alliance blog post here.

People in BC receiving the Persons with Disabilities benefit (PWD) will be able to hold more assets and receive cash gifts with no impact on their benefits due to some changes effective December 1, 2015. Here are some of the important changes to requirements for PWD eligibility:

Before December 1, 2015 From December 1, 2015
A single person receiving PWD can have $5000 in assets. A single person receiving PWD will be able to have up to $100,000 in assets.
A couple where both receive PWD can have $10,000 in assets. A couple where both receive PWD will be able to have up to $200,000 in assets.
Recipients can only receive one-time gifts without affecting their eligibility. Recipients can receive cash gifts with no effect on their eligibility.
Restrictions on use of trust money include a cap of $8000 per year for any item or cost that will help with independent living. The annual cap on trust payments will be eliminated; people will have greater flexibility in how trust money is used to lead more independent lives.

The following resources and common questions on disability benefits have been updated to reflect the changes in the rules: To stay updated, subscribe to the Clicklaw blog: and the Disability Alliance BC blog:

Need more help?

  • Advocacy Access Program, from Disability Alliance BC, provides assistance for people with disabilities. 
  • Find an Advocate, from PovNet, provides a list of community advocates who may be able to provide information or assistance regarding BC disability benefits.
  • Find more help near you on Clicklaw HelpMap.

See our related common questions:

Last reviewed February 2016
persons with disabilities (PWD) benefit, gifts, inheritance, inheritances, trusts, assets, restrictions,