Community Update: New PWD Earnings Exemption

On November 21, 2012, the Ministry of Social Development (MSD) announced the first phase of annualized earnings exemptions for people who are receiving the Persons with Disabilities (PWD) benefit. The idea of an annualized earnings exemption was proposed by a number of disability groups. The BC Coalition of People with Disabilities is pleased that MSD has acted on this recommendation.

The annual earnings exemptions will be phased in over the next year. In the first phase, which goes from January 1, 2013 to December 31, 2013, 5,000 people receiving PWD will be invited to participate. In the second phase, starting in January 2014, the annual earnings exemptions will be available to everyone receiving PWD.

As noted, only about 5,000 people will be part of the first phase of the new annualized earnings exemption. They will be receiving a letter from MSD in the near future, inviting them to participate in the new program. Participation is optional. According to MSD, participants in the first phase must have:

  • Had the PWD designation for at least the past 12 months
  • Received PWD in at least the past two consecutive months
  • In at least one of the past 12 months, had earnings over $500 for families with one adult receiving PWD and $750 for families where both adults are receiving PWD.

These are the annualized earnings exemptions maximums, announced by MSD for the period of January 1st to December 31st:

  • $9,600 for one-adult families, where the adult is receiving PWD
  • $12,000 for two-adult families, where only one adult is receiving PWD
  • $19,200 for two-adult families, where both adults are receiving PWD

For more information:

The link to the provincial government’s news release on the annualized earnings exemption is:

You can also contact Advocacy Access at 604-872-1278 or toll free 1-800-663-1278