Government of Canada implements automatic GIS enrolment

23 February 2018
Last month the Government of Canada expanded the scope of automatic enrolment for the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) to improve service delivery for low-income seniors. Eligible seniors began receiving letters in January notifying them that they will be enrolled for both Old Age Security (OAS) and GIS without needing to apply, and will receive their benefits automatically when they turn 65.
According to Employment and Social Development Canada, each month up to 17,000 seniors who turn 64 years old on or after December 1, 2017 will be selected to be automatically enrolled for the GIS benefit without needing to complete an application. The first payment will be made one month after the individual turns 65. 
Once automatically enrolled for OAS benefits, recipients will be automatically considered for the GIS each year based on their household income information included in their tax filing. This means that it is important that tax returns are filed on time each year in order to receive or maintain these benefits. This could still be a challenge for low-income seniors as they commonly face barriers to tax filing
You can hear from Minister Duclos and other federal Ministers responsible for poverty reduction in the Reducing poverty in Canada: Bold strategies and big ideas panel at the 2018 ABLE Financial Empowerment Conference on May 8-9, 2018 in Richmond, BC. To learn more about the 2018 ABLE Conference, visit