Most Canadians don’t understand CPP, OAS deferral options: survey

When it comes to retirement benefits like the Canada Pension Plan and old-age security, the majority of Canadians don’t understand their options for deferral, according to a new survey by Employment and Social Development Canada.

The survey, which polled 8,622 Canadians, found just 36 per cent are correctly aware of the deferral options for CPP and even fewer (17 per cent) understand them for OAS.

Men are somewhat more (42 per cent) aware of the CPP deferral options than women (34 per cent), as well as for OAS (20 per cent versus 16 per cent, respectively). And older Canadians are more aware for CPP, with 58 per cent of respondents aged 60 to 64 being aware, compared to just 16 per cent of those aged 40 to 44.

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Income also appeared to be correlated with this knowledge. More (59 per cent and 29 per cent) Canadians with an annual income of over $125,000 understood CPP and OAS deferrals respectively, while fewer (26 per cent and 12 per cent) of those with an annual income below $25,000 understood them.

Education also appeared to be a factor. More respondents with an undergraduate degree knew about CPP (49 per cent) and OAS (25 per cent) deferrals. About half as many (25 per cent and 12 per cent, respectively) of those with a high school diploma or equivalent said the same.

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