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BC is the first provincial government to respond to the RDSP. The BC Government has opened the door for people with disabilities and their families to use the RDSP in securing the future and improving their lives.

Minister Claude Richmond and his colleagues have exempted RDSPs as assets for determining eligibility for Disability Benefits. They have also exempted all income from RDSPs, allowing people to use the plan in whatever way they see fit without any penalties.

BC has set the high watermark for other provinces to reach for.

The BC Government’s act represents a new way forward, a huge first step in a new prosperity agenda for people with disabilities. This action begins to turn disability benefits into a floor, encouraging people with disabilities to get ahead, rather than a ceiling, above which people can’t expect to rise.

This move represents a huge improvement on BC’s trust rules, which were already among the best in the country. It also sets the stage for even further improvements.


After an 8 year campaign, PLAN’s proposal for a Registered Disability Savings Plan is now a fact. On Friday December 14th the RDSP received royal ascent after passing third reading in both the House of Commons and the Senate.

The RDSP is historic and noteworthy for a number of reasons:

  • Canada is the first country in the world to offer a Registered Disability Savings Plan.
  • The Federal Government has budgeted $115 million in matching Canada Disability Savings Grants and Bonds in for 2008-09.
  • An estimated 700,000 Canadians with disabilities and their families will be affected.
  • Provincial Governments will be forced to the asset limits for disability benefits and to eliminate claw-back. (See sidebar for changes already made by the Government of British Columbia.)
  • The Federal Government has emphatically declared that they trust families and people with disabilities. There are no restrictions on what the RDSP can be spent on.

PLAN is now working with financial institutions and the federal government to ensure the RDSP is offered as a ‘product’ in every financial institution in the country as quickly as possible.

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