March 2017

7.6: Transition Child Benefit

Legislative Authority

Sections 3, 5, 7, 8, 9, and 10 of the Act.
Sections 2, 13, 14, 39(1), 40, 47.2, 52(1), and 58.3 of Regulation 134/98.

Audit Requirements

Adequate documentation is on file to support decisions and level of benefit issued.

Application of Policy

The Transition Child Benefit (TCB) is a mandatory benefit provided to assist recipients with dependent children under the age of 18 who are:

  • not receiving the Ontario Child Benefit (OCB) and National Child Benefit Supplement (NCBS);
  • receiving less than the maximum amounts of the OCB and NCBS;
  • receiving less than the maximu. amount of the OCB and $0 NCBS; or
  • receiving $0 OCB and less than the maximum amount of the NCBS.

The amount of the TCB is up to a monthly maximum of $230 per eligible dependent child.

Note: While the NCBS is being consolidated into the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) beginning July 2016, notional NCBS amounts will continue to be provided by the Canada Revenue Agency to enable the calculation of the TCB.

Eligibility for the Transition Child Benefit

The TCB may be issued when:

  • A recipient (or spouse) receives $0 OCB and $0 NCBS for a dependent child. For example, he/she:
  • did not file an income tax return for the previous taxation year;
  • is a newcomer to Canada (i.e., refugee claimant);
  • has recently moved to Ontario;
  • has a newborn child;
  • experienced an income change; or
  • is facing administrative delays for receipt of the OCB and NCBS.

OR

  • A recipient (or spouse) receives:
  • less than the maximum OCB and less than the maximum NCBS for a dependent child; or
  • less than the maximum OCB and $0 NCBS for a dependent child; or
  • $0 OCB and less than the maximum NCBS for a dependent child.

The following are not eligible for the TCB:

  • recipients of Temporary Care Assistance (TCA);
  • recipients receiving an amount for dependent(s) of dependent(s);
  • persons in receipt of the Extended Employment Health Benefit (EEHB) or Extended Health Benefit (EHB);
  • residents of interval and transition homes once they are no longer eligible for the equivalent to basic needs and shelter; and
  • recipients of emergency hostels services - First Nations delivery agents.

As a mandatory benefit, the TCB is not included in budgetary requirements when determining eligibility for social assistance. An applicant with dependent child(ren) must be eligible for social assistance to qualify for a TCB.

Regardless of the point in the month a dependent is added to a benefit unit, the TCB cannot be pro-rated.

If during receipt of the TCB, an applicant’s non-exempt income exceeds their budgetary requirements, he/she would no longer be eligible to receive basic financial assistance, which includes the TCB.

Any decision affecting eligibility for the TCB may be appealed.

How the Transition Child Benefit is Calculated

In cases where a recipient (or spouse) receives $0 OCB and $0 NCBS for a dependent child, the recipient will receive the maximum of $230 for that dependent child.

In cases where a recipient (or spouse) receives:

  • less than the maximum OCB for a dependent child; or
  • any amount of the OCB and $0 NCBS for a dependent child; or
  • $0 OCB and any amount of the NCBS for a dependent child.

the TCB will be calculated as follows:

A = ($230 X B) - (C + D)

A = the monthly amount of the TCB
B = the number of dependent children
C = the total monthly OCB payment
D = the total monthly NCBS payment as decreased by the July 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 federal NCBS increases

Examples:

Less than the maximum OCB and less than the maximum NCBS

Single Parent with one Child ($26,000 income)

A = ($230 x B) - (C + D)

A = the amount of the Transition Child Benefit
B = one dependent child
C = monthly OCB payment = $74
D = monthly NCBS payment = $146.16 (this amount includes reduction of NCBS increases since 2004)($189.91 - $43.75 = $146.16)

A = ($230 x 1) - (74 + $146.16)

= 230 - 220.16

. 9.84

Amount of monthly Transition Child Benefit = $9.84

Less than the maximum OCB and $0 NCBS

Couple with four Children ($51,000 income)

A = ($230 x B) - (C+ D)

A = the amount of the Transition Child Benefit
B = four dependent children
C = monthly OCB payment = $241.25
D = monthly NCBS payment = $0

A= ($230 x 4) - ($241.25 + $0)

= 920 - 241.25
= 678.75

Amount of monthly Transition Child Benefit = $678.75

$0 OCB and less than the maximum NCBS

Single with one Child ($38,000 income)

A = ($230 x B) - (C+ D)

A = the amount of the Transition Child Benefit
B = one dependent child
C = monthly OCB payment = $0
D = monthly NCBS payment = $24.38 ($68.13 - $43.75 = $$24.38)

A= ($230 x 1) - ($0 + $24.38)

= 230 - 24.38
= 205.62

Amount of monthly Transition Child Benefit = $205.62

How the Transition Child Benefit is Calculated in Shared Custody Situations

In a shared custody situation where the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) is being provided to both parents over a 12 month period, the TCB will be paid over the 12 month period where each recipient is in receipt of the CCB and where he/she is receiving no OCB or less than the maximum OCB.

If a recipient in a shared custody situation does not receive the CCB, and therefore, the OCB, because of their immigration status, he/she will be eligible for 50% of the TCB. In these cases, 50% of the monthly TCB is provided to each parent (see Directive 3.9: Dependent Children for more information).

Provision of Transition Child Benefit in Other Cases

Effective July 2013, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will only issue OCB/NCBS contingency payments to those families who have filed their taxes but have not been assessed. This payment is based on the previous year’s tax assessment of the OCB/NCBS.

As those families who do not file their income taxes for the current tax year will not receive any OCB/NCBS contingency payments from CRA, they may be eligible for the TCB for up to four months to allow them sufficient time to file their taxes.

Once the current year’s income tax return is assessed, CRA will recalculate the OCB retroactively to July. If it is determined that the family received more OCB than they were entitled to, a debt will be created on the family’s CRA account. CRA will deduct the overpayment from future OCB or GST/HST credit.

In months where the maximum amount of the OCB is issued as a contingency payment, a TCB will not be issued.

In cases where a recipient receives less than the maximum OCB as a contingency payment, a TCB will be issued for this month based on the TCB eligibility criteria and formula.

For example, if a recipient is eligible for less than the maximum OCB/NCBS as a contingency payment for July, a partial TCB payment would be provided in August based on the TCB formula.

Please Note. In situations where a recipient received a partial TCB in August along with an OCB contingency payment, and his/her income taxes for the current tax period are subsequently assessed, the assessment may find the family ineligible for the OCB due to income (i.e., their appropriate OCB/NCBS entitlement). In this case, any arrears for the TCB may be issued based on the TCB formula.

For example, if a family received a partial TCB amount of $100 in August, and a subsequent tax assessment finds them ineligible for the OCB ($0 OCB), Ontario Works would issue the family the remaining $130 to cover the difference (up to the maximum TCB level of $230).

Conversely, in situations where the family has been issued the maximum TCB amount and CRA has underpaid the OCB/NCBS, CRA will issue a retroactive OCB/NCBS payment, and a TCB repayment may be collected by reducing the budgetary requirements of the benefit unit in the following month. Budgetary requirements may be reduced for a maximum of three consecutive months, or until the TCB has been collected in full, whichever comes first (see Directive 6.14: Repayment of Transition Child Benefit for more information).

Children Placed in the Temporary Care of a Children’s Aid Society or  Indigenous Child Well-Being Society, or an Alternate Caregiver

Where a child is in need of protection and is placed in the temporary care of a Children’s Aid Society, or Indigenous Child Well-Being Society (“society”), or placed by a society with an alternate caregiver, the child should remain as a dependent child in the applicant or participant’s benefit unit. In these situations, the CCB/OCB may no longer be issued to the parent if the society applies and becomes entitled to the federal Children's Special Allowance (CSA) administered by CRA. When the child is returned to the parental home, the CSA is no longer issued to the society and the caregiver must reapply for the CCB/OCB.

In circumstances where:

  • the dependent child is placed in the temporary care of a society or alternate caregiver; and.
  • the parent is no longer receiving the CCB/OCB;

then a maximum TCB monthly amount of $230 per child is to be issued for the period that the parent is not in receipt of the CCB/OCB.

In these situations, it is recognized that maintaining the child in the benefit unit is necessary to allow the parent to retain suitable housing for the child's possible return (see Directive 3.9: Dependent Children for more information).

Payments made under the Ontario Child Benefit Equivalent (OCBE) Act, 2009 may be provided in respect of a child or youth in the care of a children’s aid society (see Directive 3.9: Dependent Children for more information). OCBE payments are considered exempt as income and assets when determining eligibility and budgetary requirements of a benefit unit.

Length of Time That the Transition Child Benefit Can Be Provided

For families on social assistance that may be eligible for the OCB and NCBS, the TCB will only be provided for four months to allow time for recipients to apply by filing an income tax return or registering their child for the CCB. Generally, a determination by the CRA will be made within four months.

Ontario Works Administrators have the discretion to extend the TCB beyond four months where they are satisfied the recipient has made reasonable efforts to obtain these benefits.

For families on social assistance that are eligible for less than the maximum amount of the OCB or $0 OCB, the four-month limitation is not applied.

For families on social assistance that are not eligible for the OCB or NCBS due to their status in Canada (i.e., refugee claimants), the TCB will be provided until their claim has been determined.

Obligation to Pursue Resources

The OCB and NCBS are considered financial resources that a recipient and his/her spouse are obligated to pursue. Recipients must provide all necessary information and documentation to show they are making reasonable efforts to obtain this available income.

After four months, the Administrator has the discretion to determine whether or not the recipient has made reasonable efforts in pursuing the OCB and NCBS as income. Generally, a determination by the CRA regarding eligibility for the OCB/NCBS will be made within four months. Failure or refusal to make reasonable efforts may result in ineligibility for the TCB.

Reasonable Efforts

Reasonable efforts include, but are not limited to:

  • filing an income tax return for the recipient (and spouse, if applicable);
  • the applicant/recipient informing the CRA about changes to his or her situation that could affect his or her eligibility for the OCB and NCBS, (e.g., reporting an address change); or
  • notifying the Ontario Works local office that CRA has reassessed either the applicant/recipient or spouse’s return, and the calculation of their benefit could change.

Repayment of the Transition Child Benefit

In situations where a recipient receives a retroactive payment of the OCB and/or NCBS for the months in which a TCB is paid, the amount of the TCB issued may be recovered by a reduction of the recipient’s budgetary requirements. In these cases, the budgetary requirements will be reduced in the month following receipt of the retroactive OCB/NCBS. Budgetary requirements may be reduced for a maximum of three consecutive months, or until the TCB has been collected in full, whichever comes first (see Directive 6.14: Repayment of Transition Child Benefit for more information).

Transition Child Benefit and Overpayments

An overpayment can only be created if the recipient is found to have been ineligible for the TCB. An overpayment cannot be created if the recipient is issued an incorrect TCB amount.