If Your Diabetes Has Caused Skin Or Nerve Conditions Or Organ Damage That Limits Your Activity Or Your Ability To Walk Stand Or Use Your Hands You May Be Able To Get Disability Benefits
By Bethany K. Laurence, Attorney
Diabetes happens when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin to process glucose. Diabetes can often be controlled with treatmenta combination of medication and diet. As a person gets older, sometimes diabetes can’t be controlled, and then it can cause damage to internal organs and other problems.
Diabetes Mellitus: Type 1 And Type 2
Diabetes mellitus is a chronic medical condition marked by an inability to process glucose in the blood. When the pancreas fails to produce sufficient amounts of the hormone insulin, which sends signals to other body cells to absorb excess glucose, blood sugar levels rise.
Elevated blood sugar levels often can be controlled through medication and diet, but persistently high blood sugar levels may give rise to neuropathy causing numbness, burning, and tingling in the extremities. Other complications of diabetes include cardiovascular disease, kidney problems, skin infections, and visual changes.
Type 1 diabetes, often referred to as insulin-dependent diabetes, typically manifests in childhood and requires daily insulin injections and monitoring of blood sugar levels. Individuals with Type 1 diabetes are unable to produce the insulin which regulates blood sugar levels. Only about five to ten percent of diabetic individuals suffer from Type 1 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes, also called adult-onset diabetes, occurs when the body’s cells become resistant to insulin and thus fail to process sufficient amounts of glucose. Type 2 diabetes is most common in those over 45, and it is strongly associated with obesity, high blood pressure, and a sedentary lifestyle. Genetic factors also play a role in the development of Type 2 diabetes.
Diabetes is generally treated by endocrinologists, who prescribe medication, blood sugar monitoring, and lifestyle changes to control the disease.
Diabetes Control / Compliance
Six months may be enough of a history for a newly diagnosed case of diabetes, or for someone who has changed treatments, to show he is responding better. But if you have had poor control in the past you will have to establish a longer history of good control perhaps a year to get a better price for your life insurance policy.
Here are examples of what a policy might cost for various amounts of life insurance. If you were diagnosed between ages 40 and 50 you will be in the higher range but after age 50 you have a good chance of getting standard rates if everything else is controlled. An example of everything else being controlled is if you have high blood pressure or cholesterol and it is controlled through medication.
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Why Do Children Qualify For The Disability Tax Credit
The reason that children qualify for the Disability Tax Credit is because CRA feels that the time that they spend on their care AND the time that their parents spend on their care, together is equal to more than 14 hours per week. Adults do not require the help of others for the most part. They, therefore, must prove that they, themselves spend over 14 hours per week on therapy to keeping themselves alive.
How To Apply To The Disability Tax Credit For My Child With Diabetes
As with adults, applying for a child for the Disability Tax Credit for diabetes comes down to the amount of time it takes to maintain the disease and its overall effect on the childs ADLs.
However, if you are applying for the DTC for a child with diabetes, the time you and the child spent doing and supervising activities related to tending to their diabetes will both count towards the 14 plus hours a week required to make them eligible due to life-sustaining therapy.
Activities counted as supervising a child with Type 1 diabetes that can be as the 14 hours per week requirement include:
- Waking the child at night to test their blood glucose level
- Checking the child to decide if more blood glucose testing is needed
- Any other supervisory activities be considered necessary to adjust the dosage of insulin
An eligible child may receive one or both of the following refunds:
- Federal Tax Refund If the impaired childs parent or caregiver has paid into Federal income taxes, they will receive the same amount an adult claimant would.
- Child Disability Benefits If the parent or caregiver has not paid into Federal income tax, they will only receive the Child Disability Benefits.
To learn more about the Child Disability Tax Credit, check out our in-depth guide.
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Diabetes And Disability Tax Credit
If you or anyone you are taking care is labeled with Diabetes / type 1 or 2, chances are that you may qualify for Disability Tax Credit.
Diabetes is a chronic condition associated with abnormally high levels of sugar in the blood. Insulin produced by the pancreas lowers blood sugar. Absence or insufficient production of insulin, or an inability of the body to properly use insulin causes diabetes. The two types of diabetes are referred to as type 1 and type 2. The Canada Revenue Agency has offers substantial credit as Disability Tax Credit for people with this illness.
We offer a free consultation to find out if you qualify and are eligible for Canada Disability Tax Credit and have years of experience working with cases involving Diabetes. We serve the provinces of Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Quebec and Saskatchewan.
As a Disability Tax Credit Consultant, we will act on your behalf and do the necessary paperwork and deal with Canada Revenue Agency and get the maximum amount allowed. The submission process is never straightforward and requires careful planning. Fortunately, by years of submitting cases involving Diabetes and Disability Tax Credit, we are confident in making your claim successful. We`ll constantly be in touch with the CRA to and keep you informed of the status of your application.To get started, give us a call, or simply use the form on your right and we`ll be in touch.
Benefits Of An Registered Disability Savings Plan
The bonus of saving for these future needs within an RDSP is the significant government grants and bonds which are available. To encourage us to save for future needs, rather than relying on other government programs, skimping on medications or supplies when we cant afford them, or falling into poverty due to higher expenses needed to manage a chronic health condition like type 1 diabetes, the Government of Canada offers the following incentives for holding an RDSP:
- The Canada disability savings grant is an amount that the Government of Canada pays into a registered disability savings plan . The Government will pay matching grants of 300%, 200%, or 100%, depending on the beneficiarys adjusted family net income and the amount contributed. That means, at the 300% matching grant level, if you put in $1000, the Government of Canada will kick in $3000. If eligible, thats the best free money out there!
- The Canada disability savings bond is an amount paid by the Government of Canada directly into an RDSP. The Government will pay bonds of up to $1,000 a year to low-income Canadians with disabilities. No contributions have to be made to get the bond. The lifetime bond limit is $20,000.
For examples of these government incentives, and tips on how to maximize the CDSG and CDSB, see this downloadable and printable RDSP brochure, prepared and made available to Waltzing the Dragon readers by Daryl R. Burd, D-Parent and Investment Advisor .
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Signs & Symptoms Of Type 1 Diabetes
Signs for Type 1 diabetes include extreme thirst, frequent urination, drowsiness, increased appetite, sudden weight loss, sudden vision loss, sugar in the urine, fruity odor on the breath, heavy breathing, and unconsciousness.
Patients with Type 1 diabetes must manage their blood-sugar levels as they are at a higher risk of having a heart attack, stroke, blindness, kidney disease and amputation. If you notice any of these signs it is important to immediately contact your doctor. Risk factors for developing this disease include family history, genetics, and age.
Those with a parent or sibling with Type 1 diabetes have a slightly higher risk of developing this condition. With regards to age, this disease can happen at any age however peak times are between 4 to 7 years old as well as 10 to 14 years old.
What If Im Sent A Second Form Regarding Time Spent
If sent an additional form regarding your time spent tending to your diabetes, it is best to not only confirm that it takes 14 hours or more a week to maintain, but you should also elaborate further than you had on the initial form.
Heres some examples of how to add up your time:
For injections, take into account the time it takes to:
- Clean the area where injection will go
- Clean and prep the vial
- Perform the injection
Preparing and injecting insulin usually takes around 3.5 hours or a week.
For insulin pumpers, take into account the time it takes to:
- Change pump tubing and insulin cartridge
- Adjusting pump programming
It usually takes 7 plus hours a week to maintain an insulin pump.
For logging, take into account the time it takes to:
- Analyzing trends
It would total 30 minutes per day, equating to 3.5 hours per week.
For checking blood glucose levels, take into account the time it takes to:
- Wash the area to be tested,
- Ensure meter is coded properly
- Insert the test strip
- Apply blood
- Record reading
This is usually done 8 times per day, taking around 3 minutes per test equating to 24 minutes per day or 3 hours per week.
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Financial Assistance For People With Diabetes
If you’re living with diabetes, you may have higher health care-related costs than people without diabetes. Financial assistance programs can help offset some of the costs associated with diabetes management.
Various financial assistance programs are offered by governments, communities and groups across Canada. These programs may differ from province to province and eligibility criteria for each program are unique.
Measuring Impacts On People With Disabilities
Are you using qualitative as well as quantitative indicators to evaluate the impact of policies and programs on people with disabilities?
Have indicators been included throughout the evaluation framework to assess short-, medium- and long-term impacts?
Have you included indicators that will assess whether the policy or program has contributed to full participation, equality of opportunity, opportunities for independent living and economic self-sufficiency for people with disabilities?
Examples of such indicators could include whether the policy or program will:
- provide people with disabilities with increased opportunities for social, economic and civic participation
- reduce disparities for people with disabilities with regard to income, employment, health, housing, education, transportation and information and
- help people with disabilities overcome barriers to self-sufficiency and independence .
Are beneficiaries passive recipients or does the process enable them to take part in decision-making processes?
Do your evaluation mechanisms measure whether the policy or program creates any direct or indirect obstacles to the full participation of persons with disabilities? For example:
- lack of supports for disability-related costs
- eligibility criteria which may not be justified
- physical accessibility and,
- accessible service delivery.
What is the satisfaction rate of people with disabilities participating in the program or receiving the service?
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Ive Been Diagnosed With Diabetes Will I Be Able To Keep My Job
For those who are diagnosed with diabetes whilst currently working for a company, the company will be expected to make reasonable adjustments to accommodate the condition, if they are necessary. What qualifies as a reasonable adjustment is open to discussion.
Examples of reasonable adjustments could include: adjusting working times, changing the duties you are required to undertake, allowing time off for doctors appointments, or even transferring you to a more appropriate position .
Does Type 2 Diabetes Qualify For The Disability Tax Credit
Type 2 diabetes occurs when the body cant properly use the insulin released or does not make enough insulin. As a result, sugar builds up in the blood instead of being used as energy. About 90 percent of people with diabetes have type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes more often develops in adults, but children can be affected.
Unlike Type 1 diabetes, Type 2 doesnt always require insulin administration, but it takes a significant amount of time, money, and effort to maintain when it is necessary. If caring for the disease takes up to 14 hours per week to tend to, you could be eligible for the Disability Tax Credit.
Dtc Eligibility For Taxpayers With Type 1 Diabetes
Why people living with Type 1 diabetes have been refused the Disability Tax Credit
The CRA has been finding people living with Type 1 diabetes ineligible for the Disability Tax Credit , on the basis that one of the requirements is you need 14 hours of life-sustaining therapy per week, on average, to qualify.
An internal CRA clarification letter from May said adult diabetics dont require that much time, explaining that 14 hours per week to manage insulin therapy is only required in exceptional circumstances.
The agency faced criticism from diabetes support groups, disability advocates and opposition parties for denying the DTC claims of people with Type 1 diabetes who had previously qualified. Though it says it never changed the eligibility criteria, CRA announced earlier this month that it would revert to the pre-May clarification letter.
The agency stated it would review all applications that had been refused since May 2017. Applicants are not required to present new or additional information, unless the CRA requests that they do so.
In reality, the number of therapy hours for people living with Type 1 diabetes varies based on the persons condition. Even with CRA returning to its original clarification, its likely that very few cases will satisfy the criteria of 14 hours. To address this, Finance Canada would need to change the legislation.
Can Type 1 Diabetes Be Cured Completely
Although there is no cure for Type 1 diabetes there are still many ways to manage it. In order to live a healthy life it is important to monitor your blood-sugar levels regularly and deliver proper doses of insulin to yourself. You may also consult an endocrinologist who is trained to restore a normal balance of hormones in your body.
Your primary doctor is also very helpful as they conduct general checkups to monitor your health and overall well-being. Furthermore, a dietician is recommended as they are well trained in the field of nutrition. These specialists can help you find foods based on your weight, lifestyle, and medication.
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Did The Cra Reverse Type 1 Diabetes Eligibility For The Disability Tax Credit
In 2017, the Canada Revenue Agency made a revision to the rules regarding life-sustaining therapy, resulting in those with type 1 diabetes being denied for the DTC.
Under the revised requirements, those who independently manage insulin therapy do not meet the 14-hour per week requirement unless they have other chronic conditions that affect the time needed to maintain their health. However, the decision was reversed only a year later, allowing those with type 1 diabetes to benefit from the tax refund.
Signs & Symptoms Of Diabetes
Signs for Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes vary. As mentioned previously, Type 1 diabetes can occur suddenly and can strike children and adults at any age. Symptoms include extreme thirst, frequent urination, drowsiness, increased appetite, sudden weight loss, sugar in the urine, vision loss, heavy breathing, and unconsciousness.
Patients with Type 1 diabetes must manage their blood-sugar levels as they are at a higher risk of having a heart attack, stroke, blindness, kidney disease and amputation.
Symptoms for Type 2 diabetes include excessive thirst and hunger, sores or cuts that wont heal, blurry vision, and frequent urination. It is important to note that symptoms for both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes are very similar.
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Disability Rights In Canada With Type One Diabetes
Over the last few months, CIM Content Intern, Eleanor Medley, took a look at the past, present, and future of the diabetes world. She took a detailed look at the American Disability Rights Movement. We wanted to follow that up and dive a little bit deeper into how the disability rights movement has impacted Canadians, specifically, how this might impact you and your life with diabetes, and outline a few great ways to get involved in local advocacy efforts.
Lets start out by facing this head on: We know that there is a divide in the community about the use of the term disability when we are talking about life with Type 1 diabetes. It can create tension. We get it. Just as Your Diabetes May Vary, so may the experiences that have brought you to where you are today and have helped shape your views. And your reactions. They are valid.
Lauren Salko is wearing in a long grey dress and is crouched in the middle of a dirt trail, with her arm over her chocolate lab and diabetes alert dog, Silas. The path is winding through grass and trees.
Two people wearing large hiking backpacks stand on a cliff overlooking Gros Morne National Park. There is a small pond to their right. A view of the ocean is far off in the distance. This photo was taken on the 2016 CIM Adventure Trek.
Now that weve set the stage, lets dive in a little deeper.
Lets start off by laying out the official definition of disability, according to the Ontario Human Rights Commission. A disability is defined as: