Income Assistance and Disability Benefits Increase

The BC Budget for 2019 has announced the following increases to the benefits rate effective April 1, 2019: Increasing the income and disability assistance rates by $50 per person Investing $26 million towards helping remove barriers to people accessing supports (i.e. mental health, older adults, etc). Including helping people obtain identification to access services, and extending shelter rates to those …

B.C. Child Opportunity Benefit

According to the B.C. Budget for 2019 the budget is introducing a new child benefit starting October 2020 that will provide families with: One child: up to $1,600 per year Two children: up to $2,600 per year Three children: up to $3,400 per year to help with the child’s upbringing. Families consisting of a child under 18 years old earning …

B.C. Student Loan Interest Eliminated

Starting February 19th 2019, all B.C. student loans will stop accumulating interest and there will be no more B.C. student loan interest. By doing this it is estimated to save students around $2,300 over 10 years (if they have a loan of $28,000) according to the budget estimate. For more information: https://news.gov.bc.ca/releases/2019FIN0019-000248

Emergency Home Repairs Crisis Supplement

A crisis supplement for emergency home repairs is not available through the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction may be provided to recipients if all of the following criteria have been met: The requirements for a crisis supplement have been met The emergency repairs are at the applicant’s place of residence The recipient’s place of residence is owned by …

Crisis Supplement For Food Policy Change

On December 1st 2018, several important changes were introduced by the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction regarding crisis supplements: The maximum amount of a crisis supplement for food has increased from $20 to $40 per person per month. There is no longer a limit on the amount of crisis supplements a person or family unit can request in …

Recent changes to the Residential Tenancy Act

In May 17, 2018, several important changes were introduced to the Residential Tenancy Act. Since then, Ask an Advocate has received a lot of questions from individuals curious to learn more about how this affects them. Have a read, especially if you are a renter, as these changes are made retrospectively, meaning  it applies to current and future tenancy agreements! …

Latest Changes to the Tenancy Laws in BC

The Residential Tenancy Branch of British Columbia has made changes to the tenancy laws, which came into effect on December 11, 2017. As quoted from the Ministry website: “Changes to the legislation include limiting the use of vacate clauses in new and existing fixed-term tenancy agreements, limiting rent increases between fixed term tenancy agreements with the same tenant, and strengthening …

Annual Bus Pass Available as a Disability Assistance Supplement – Effective January 1, 2018

The Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction has announced a new transportation supplement. Beginning on January 1, 2018, annual bus passes will be available to people on disability assistance – individuals with Persons with Disabilities (PWD) designation. There is flexibility to the supplement, and an individual can apply for the bus pass at any time during the year but also …