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Canadian Forces Income Support - Survivors

Are you the survivor or orphan child of a Canadian Armed Forces Veteran and having financial difficulties because of low or no income? The Canadian Forces Income Support is a tax-free, monthly benefit that can help.

About this program

The Canadian Forces Income Support (CFIS) is a tax-free monthly benefit to help low-income survivors, and orphan children. You may be eligible to receive this benefit if you previously received the Earnings Loss Benefit or your spouse/parent was receiving Canadian Forces Income Support when they passed away.

For this program, we use the Statistics Canada Formula to measure low income. This formula considers any income you are currently earning or any government benefits you receive.

Do you qualify?

If you are the survivor or orphan child of a Canadian Armed Forces Veteran you should apply for Canadian Forces Income Support if:

  • you have a low income,
  • you were receiving Earnings Loss Benefit for Survivors but it has ended (entitlement ends on what would have been deceased Veteran’s 65th birthday), or the deceased Veteran was receiving CFIS at time of his or her non-service related death, and
  • you meet the Canadian residency requirements.

As an orphan you must be either:

  • under age 18, or
  • between the ages of 18 and 25 and still attending school, or you are incapacitated.

'Incapacitated' refers to someone who is prevented, by physical or developmental disability, from earning a livelihood.

If the Veteran's death was not service-related, survivors must apply within 6 months of the last day of the month in which the veteran dies. There is no time limit if the Veteran’s death was related to service. This time limitation does not apply to orphan children.

How to apply

Apply online

If you are registered for My VAC Account, you can submit your application for this benefit online. If you aren't registered, you can register now.

My VAC Account

Mail or in person

Download the application form. Then, drop it off at a VAC Office or at any Service Canada office. You can also mail your completed form directly to the address listed on the form.

Go to form

Get help with your application

The staff at any VAC office or Transition Centre (TC) can assist you, or call us at 1-866-522-2122.

Additional information

Find out more

We use the Statistics Canada Formula to measure low income.

Residency requirement: If you remain in Canada for more than 182 days in a calendar year, maintain a permanent Canadian address, and have no other residency circumstances, you will meet the CFIS Residency Requirement.

For more details about eligibility see the Canadian Forces Income Support - Eligibility policy and the Canadian Forces Income Support Benefit - Income Assessment policy.

The amount you receive depends on if you are single, married, and if you have any children. The benefit is also adjusted on a quarterly basis to keep pace with changes in the cost of living index. See the current rates.

Related programs

Canadian Forces Income Support: Monthly payments if you have a low household income

Income Replacement Benefit for survivors and children: A monthly payment for eligible survivors and orphans of a deceased CAF member or Veteran.

Veterans Emergency Fund: Prompt assistance for eligible Veterans and their families who are facing an unexpected financial emergency.

Frequently asked questions

If I apply for the benefit and get declined, can I appeal?

Yes. If you are not satisfied with a decision you may apply in writing for a review. Learn more about your review and appeal options.

Are there policies for this program?

Yes. Read more about the Canadian Forces Income Support policies.