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Participation Agreements and Ontario Works

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Who has to sign a Participation Agreement?

OW does not consider your application to be complete until you sign a Participation Agreement.

If your spouse lives with you, they also have to sign an Agreement.

Your spouse can be someone of the same or opposite sex. You could be married to one another or not.

To learn more about the rules OW uses to decide if someone is your spouse, see CLEO's resource Social assistance rules about couples: What you need to know if you live with someone.

Other adult family members who live with you may also have to sign Agreements.

Agreements for people getting ODSP benefits

Some people who get income support from the Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) must sign a Participation Agreement and follow the same rules as people on OW.

This applies to you if you are getting income support from ODSP because you are:

  • the spouse of someone who is on ODSP
  • the child of someone who is on ODSP and you are 18 or older

If you are the caregiver for your spouse or parent who is on ODSP, you do not have to do the activities in the Agreement. But first you must get a letter from your doctor or other health‑care professional confirming that you cannot do the activities because you are a caregiver.

Examples of other health‑care professionals who can write a letter are nurse practitioners, psychiatrists, and social workers.