How to apply for disability benefits

Carol Roach By Carol Roach, 11th Jul 2015 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Health>General Health>Managing Health Care

This article presents a case history of a disabled person who takes you through the journey of apply for permanent disability in Quebec

Case History

Case History of the medical and legal journey towards filing for and obtaining disability payments with La Régie des rentes du Québec

Montreal disabled woman

Carol became ill in 2005 and after taking two sick leave benefits from work between 2002 – 2004, she knew she could no longer work. She had several medical issues from diabetes to fibromyalgia, she barely could walk and was in constant pain. Besides her failing body, she suffered from dizziness and had a hard time concentrating about her job. She was sitting at her work station and feeling like the walls were crashing in upon her. She had to take several washroom breaks with her head held over the toilet bowl.

Carol did not want to leave work, but it got to the point that she could no longer do a full week's work. She was too sick to get out of bed at least once a week, and the days she did manage to go to work she was ill most of the time.

Carol knew the writing was on the wall; she had to make a very serious decision although she was reluctant to do so. Working part-time was not an option either, as she could not predict which days she would be well enough to work and which day she would not. She had no savings or pension plans. She would have to go on unemployment insurance and then fall onto welfare. It was terrifying, it was hard enough to make ends meet with her present salary, yet, she would have to make the decision to put herself into prolonged poverty because her body had failed her.

Carol used up her unemployment insurance benefits, but still had hope of returning to work. She enrolled in a job search program here in Montreal to see if she could get some ideas of perhaps a different line of work that might accommodate her disabilities. \

She completed the program only to find she would secure the job interviews, but each and every time the day for the interview arrived, she was too sick to get out of bed. Perhaps, it was the illness, perhaps it was the stress of the pending interview, but either way she was in no shape to go back to work.

Carol was had no income and incapable of working. She had no choice but to apply for welfare. The little bit of money she received on welfare paid her rent and nothing else. There was no money left for bills, or clothes, transportation or food. She was falling further and further in the sea of despair.

She went to her doctor, to see if she could get a letter from him so that she could apply for disability benefits. Her doctor was skeptical. He felt she did not have a chance, he felt fibromyalgia would not be accepted as a reason for disability.

Carol was desperate, she wouldn't relent and insisted he give her the paper anyhow. He finally agreed to sign the paper for temporary disability, telling her he felt she would be refused for permanent disability but might be considered for temporary disability benefits.

Temporary disability

Carol accepted the plan and was granted temporary disability. Then refused because she had used up the full time allotted. Apparently a temporary disability cannot extend longer than one year. She had to jump through hoops just to get that. When She was refused further disability benefits she did not know what to do.

She knew she was still too sick to work and when she went to her doctor for disability in the first place he told she could only get temporary disability. He figured that she would never be granted permanent disability. So when she was refused the temporary disability after a year of receiving benefits, she called her welfare agent who told told her to apply for permanent disability. She had nothing to lose by doing so.

Applying for permanent disability

Applying for permanent disability

Carol thought that her ordeal was over, but no it was not. She have to apply for the Quebec Disability Pension Plan because she had worked and paid into the fund. She was told that she have no other choice. It is the law. The welfare disability is last resort, meaning there are no other programs available for a person in need. Everyone had to exhaust all other sources before the welfare disability would continue issuing payments.

She was told if she did not comply the welfare would cut her off and she would have nothing. So again she had to apply to yet another place. She had to get the doctor to fill out the form once again.

To further complicate the matter her doctor was off sick and that was holding everything up. She had three months to get all the documentation in order. Before, actually receiving the disability pension plan benefits she had to go for an examination by the government appointed doctor, even though she had already been accepted by another branch of the government for disability benefits. The Quebec disability pension plan requires you are examined by their doctors.

What would happen if the La Regie Des Rentes du Quebec refuses disability pension?

If Carol filed for the Quebec Disability Pension and they refused her, she would continue with the welfare. However, if they accepted her, but gave her less than what she was getting with the welfare, the welfare would make up the difference. If they give her more, that is absolutely wonderful. The welfare disability will cut her off of course at that point.

Carol applied for the permanent and had to fill out another application and medical form, go for all kinds of tests yet again, and be seen by the government doctor, To her relief, she was accepted for permanent disability.

The following is information for any Montreal resident who is contemplating applying for the Quebec Disability Pension Plan.

This article is based on the rules and regulations concerning applying for disability in the Province of Quebec. You are advised to check with your state or province to see what you need to know about your own system.

The Quebec disability pension is reserved for people who have worked and have become disabled. It is not set up for people who have never worked before. Other programs are available for such people.

To qualify for the Quebec Disability Pension

You must be under the age of 65 and have contributed to the Quebec Pension Plan while you were healthy and able to work.

There are two plans that you may apply for depending on your situation:

The disability pension
The pension for a disabled person's child

Who can qualify for a Quebec Disability Pension?

You are considered to be disabled and eligible for the disability pension if you are between age 60 and 65 and you can no longer do the type of work that you were doing before you became disabled (subject to review and approval by the Regie)


You are younger than 60 years old and your disability is severe enough that you cannot find gainful employment and maintain it on a regular basis. This disability is expected to last indefinitely.

How is the Quebec Disability Pension Paid?

Once your application for disability has been approved, you will receive your first payment four months afterward. For example, if the application was approved in January, you will receive your first payment in May. The last payment will be the month of your 65th birthday. You will also receive any retroactive payments due to you.

Each year the pension will increase according to the cost of living, however you will be expected to pay income tax upon the monies you receive

For more information about the Quebec Pension Plan:

By Internet:

By Phone:

Region of Quebec: 418-643-5185

Montreal: 514-873-2433

Toll free number: 1-800-463-5185

TTY - Service for the hearing impaired


What you need to know

Montreal disabled individuals will want to know the following information before apply for a Quebec disability pension.

How is the Quebec Disability Pension Paid?

Did you know that your children can receive a pension if you are disabled?

Pension for a disabled person's child

Pension for a disabled Person's child is a fixed monthly amount given to support the children of disabled pensioners. You are entitled to this pension if:

If you are a child, either living, or not living with your disabled parent. Child is defined as someone who is under 18 years of age.
If you are a stepchild living with the disabled person, or you are a child being supported by a disabled person (may not be a blood relative).

Note: The minor child cannot be receiving another pension under the Quebec or Canada pension fund.

What happens if you are receiving a Government Pension from Elsewhere?

You cannot receive a Quebec Disability Pension if you are already receiving a Canada Disability Pension.

If you are receiving any other type of pension, such as a Quebec Solidarity Pension (welfare disability pension) the amount of the Quebec Pension plan will be deducted from the Solidarity Pension and may be deducted from other pensions as well. Please inquire with the pension source that you are now receiving as to how the Quebec Disability Pension will affect your existing payments.

How to Apply

You must fill out the application form. Fill it out right away. Do not wait for your doctor to fill out the medical form. Your payments will be contingent upon the date of the application. However, any retroactive amounts paid to you may be deducted from your current pension source if you are receiving a pension of another kind.

Make sure your doctor fills out the form as soon as possible.

You are responsible for covering the fee for your doctor filling out the form.

Work Outside of the Country

If you worked and contributed to a pension plan outside of Canada, you may still be entitled to a Quebec disability pension without having the Quebec plan payments reduced.

Fill Out the Application

You must fill out all questions in the application. If you do not have enough space to answer sufficiently then you can add the additional information in section 13.

You must fill out Section 1 of the medical report. Your doctor is responsible for filling out the rest of it.

Your application will be reviewed. Additional information may be required such as additional doctor's reports from specialists, tests results and so on. The Regie has up to five months to approve the application; but most applications are approved within 3 months.

Since it takes up to five months for approval and 4 additional months before the first payment is rendered, please do not delay. As soon as you are aware that you are unable to continue working, see your doctor right away.

All photos taken from the public domain

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Applying For Disability, Disability, Disability Benefits, Disabled People, La Rgie Des Rentes Du Qubec

Meet the author

author avatar Carol Roach
Retired therapist and author of two books, freelance writer, newsletter editor, and blogger. I write, health, mental health, women's issues, animal , celebrity, history, and SEO articles.

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