Archived - Backgrounder - Sustainable Social Programs and a Secure Retirement

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In order to ensure the sustainability of our social programs and fiscal position for generations to come, steps are required to prepare today for the demographic pressures that the Canadian economy will face over the longer term. Canadians are living longer and healthier lives.

Economic Action Plan 2012 will:

  • Gradually increase the age of eligibility for Old Age Security (OAS) and Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) benefits from 65 to 67. This change will start in April 2023, with full implementation by January 2029, and will not affect anyone who is 54 years of age or older as of March 31, 2012.
OAS/GIS Age of Eligibility by Date of Birth
Month of Birth 1958 1959 1960 1961 1962
OAS/GIS Eligibility Age
Jan. 65 65 + 5 mo 65 + 11 mo 66 + 5 mo 66 + 11 mo
Feb. – Mar. 65 65 + 6 mo 66 66 + 6 mo 67
Apr. – May 65 + 1 mo 65 + 7 mo 66 + 1 mo 66 + 7 mo 67
June – July 65 + 2 mo 65 + 8 mo 66 + 2 mo 66 + 8 mo 67
Aug. – Sept. 65 + 3 mo 65 + 9 mo 66 + 3 mo 66 + 9 mo 67
Oct. – Nov. 65 + 4 mo 65 + 10 mo 66 + 4 mo 66 + 10 mo 67
Dec. 65 + 5 mo 65 + 11 mo 66 + 5 mo 66 + 11 mo 67
Note: mo = months.
  • Increase the ages at which the Allowance and the Allowance for the Survivor are provided from 60-64 today, to 62-66 starting in April 2023. This change will not affect anyone who is 49 years of age or older as of March 31, 2012.
  • Allow for the voluntary deferral of the OAS pension, for up to five years, starting on July 1, 2013. This will give Canadians the option to defer take-up of their OAS pension to a later time and receive a higher, actuarially adjusted pension.
  • Put in place a proactive enrolment regime for OAS and GIS to reduce the burden on seniors of completing application processes and reduce the Government’s administrative costs. Proactive enrolment will be implemented in a phased-in approach from 2013 to 2015.