Electing the OAS Equivalent


A worker may elect to receive an amount equal to the full monthly pension for Old Age Security (OAS), instead of a future economic loss (FEL) benefit, if the worker meets the following criteria:

  • is at least 55 years of age when the WSIB determines or reviews the FEL benefit
  • has not returned to work, and
  • is unlikely, in the opinion of the WSIB, to benefit from a return-to-work (RTW) plan


The purpose of this policy is to outline when a worker may elect to receive an amount equal to the full monthly pension for OAS instead of a FEL benefit.



For a worker to be eligible to elect the OAS equivalent option, the worker must be entitled to either a FEL benefit that is greater than zero, or a FEL sustainability benefit that is greater than zero.

A worker is not eligible to elect the OAS option, if the worker:

  • was able to return to work, with or without a RTW plan, and chose not to do so, or
  • returned to work and was able to sustain earnings, but left the workforce for reasons unrelated to the injury.


The option to elect the OAS equivalent can be considered at an initial FEL determination, or at any subsequent FEL review as long as the worker meets the criteria (see Policy and Eligibility guidelines above).


The WSIB continues to pay the OAS equivalent until there is a review. A review may be prompted by the reporting of a material change in circumstances, or it may be initiated by the WSIB. At each review, a worker can elect the OAS equivalent or the FEL benefit as long as they continue to meet the criteria, as specified above.

If before the final review (60 months after the FEL is determined) a worker's condition deteriorates resulting in an increase in the non-economic loss (NEL) benefit, the worker can continue receiving the OAS equivalent or can elect to receive a FEL benefit. This is because workers are entitled to a FEL review if their NEL benefit is increased.

For information on:

Application date

This policy applies to all FEL decisions made on or after March 1, 2021, for accidents from January 2, 1990 to December 31, 1997.

Document history

This document replaces 18-04-09 dated January 2, 2015.

This document was previously published as:
18-04-09 dated February 15, 2013
18-04-09 dated October 12, 2004
18-04-09 dated November 30, 2000
18-04-09 dated June 15, 2009
7.8* dated January 1, 1998
05-05-10* dated February 12, 1992
*documents were replaced by 18-04-09 dated June 15, 1999.


Legislative authority

Workplace Safety and Insurance Act, 1997, as amended
Sections 102, 108

Workers' Compensation Act, R.S.O. 1990, as amended
Section 43


#34, March 24, 2021, Page 588