Top Tips in Preparing For an Appeal of a CPP Disability Benefits Denial

Tips to remember in appealing your CPP disability claim:

  1. Read the file carefully, especially the letter “Explanation of the Decision under Appeal”.  This letter will help you understand why Human Resources and Skills Development Canada refused your benefits.
  2. Write down any questions you want to ask the Review Tribunal staff or your CPP  lawyer.
  3. To ensure that your Minimum Qualifying Period is correct, check CPP Contributions in the Record of Earnings in your hearing file. Make sure they agree with your work history.
  4. If you have receipts, the Office of the Commissioner of Review Tribunal (OCRT) will reimburse you the cost of getting medical records that are already on file with your doctors and hospitals.
  5. If reasonable the OCRT will pay travel and other costs related to getting to your hearing. These could include travel expenses or, if you have to stay overnight, meals and accommodation, which must be approved in advance.
  6. If required the OCRT will provide and pay for a professional interpreter at your hearing.
  7. OCRT will make every effort to hear your witnesses.  OCRT places a lot of weight on what you and your witnesses have to say at the hearing. This is assessed in relation to documentary evidence such as medical reports.
  8. Expect questions about your medical treatment and be ready to provide reasons for declining any treatment.
  9. Be ready to provide a detailed explanation about any return to work you attempted after you became disabled.
  10. Prepare in advance so that you can make the best possible presentation at your hearing.