Nova Scotia has joined the majority of provinces who are fully exempting the Registered Disability Savings Plan when calculating clients elgibility for income assistance.  Nova Scotia announced this fantastic news earlier this morning and will allow Nova Scotians receiving income assistance to fully benefit from this program.

“Many people worry about what will happen when they’re no longer here to provide care for a family member who is disabled,” said Community Services Minister Chris d’Entremont. “This will give families peace of mind by allowing them to plan a more financially secure future for their relative.

There are no restrictions on who may contribute to a Registered Disability Savings Plan and no annual contribution limit. There is a lifetime maximum of $200,000 per individual fund. The federal government recently announced that the 2008 contribution year has been extended to March 2, 2009”

This means that BC, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Newfoundland and Labrador, Yukon, Nova Scotia, (and sounds like NWT), have all come out in complete support of the RDSP.  Quebec and New Brunswick have exempted the RDSP as an asset (meaning it can grow to whatever amount without affecting Disability income assistance benefits), but have capped the amount you can receive from an RDSP monthly at $305 (QB) and $800 (NB).  PEI has exempted the RDSP as an asset and income, up until someone reaches the low income threshold (go to http://www.rdsp.com for more details).  Nunavut is yet to announce their treatment of the RDSP.

To view the official press release you can visit the Nova Scotia Department of Community Services website at http://www.gov.ns.ca/news/details.asp?id=20090211002

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