as enacted by SM 1987-88, c. 9 on July 17, 1987.
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R.S.M. 1987, c. S160
The Social Allowances Act
HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba, enacts as follows:
In this Act,
"agency" means a child caring agency as defined in The Child and Family Services Act; ("office")
"appeal board" means The Social Services Advisory Committee for which provision is made in The Social Services Administration Act; ("Comité d'appel")
"applicant" means a person who applies for a social allowance; ("requérant")
"assistance" means assistance as defined in The Social Services Administration Act; ("aide")
"basic necessities" means the things and services to which reference is made in section 2; ("besoins essentiels")
"child" means a boy or girl actually or apparently under 18 years of age; ("enfant")
"cost of the basic necessities" or " cost of his basic necessities" means the cost, as established in the regulations, of those basic necessities with respect to which a regulation is made under section 6; ("coût des besoins essentiels")
"dependant" with respect to any person, means his spouse and includes any child who is dependant upon him for support and who is
(a) under the age of 16 years, or
(b) 16 years of age or older and mentally or physically incapacitated,
and, at the discretion of the director, includes any such dependant child who is over the age of 16 years but under the age of 18 years: but does not include the spouse of any child to whom this definition applies; ("personne à charge")
"director" means the Executive Director for whom provision is made in The Social Services Administration Act and includes the director of any district office and one other person from each district office designated by the minister; ("directeur")
"financial resources" means, with the exception of the exemptions specified in the regulations, any one or more of the following things:
(a) all the real and personal property of an applicant, a recipient or a dependant of the applicant or recipient, including the net income from any such property,
(b) allowances, pensions, insurance benefits, and income from business farming or any other source received by an applicant, recipient or a dependant of the applicant or recipient,
(c) gifts and gratuities whether in cash or in kind received by an applicant, recipient or a dependent of the applicant or recipient on a one time basis or otherwise, and
(d) the value attributed by the director to free shelter, free board or free lodging, received by an applicant, recipient or a dependant of the applicant or recipient; ("ressources financières")
"hospital" means a hospital as defined in The Hospitals Act or The Mental Health Act or an institution operated by the Sanatorium Board of Manitoba; ("hôpital")
"minister" means the member of the Executive Council charged by the Lieutenant Governor in Council with the administration of this Act; ("ministre")
"municipal assistance" means assistance provided by municipalities to a person in need who is resident, or is found in, the municipality, and who is not qualified to receive a social allowance, by way of furnishing of basic necessities and includes expenditures by the municipality under the regulations for the assistance of persons in need; ("aide municipale")
"recipient" means a person to whom a social allowance is being, or has been, provided; ("bénéficiaire")
"social allowance" means an amount paid to any person pursuant to section 5; ("allocation d'aide sociale")
"social services" means services having as their object the lessening, removal or prevention of the causes and effects of poverty, child neglect or dependence on social allowance, and, without limiting the generality of the foregoing, includes
(a) rehabilitation services,
(b)case work, counselling, assessment and referral services,
(c) adoption services,
(d) homemaker, day care and similar services,
(e) community development services,
(f) consulting, research and evaluation services with respect to social programs, and
(g) administrative, secretarial and clerical services, including staff training, relating to the provision of any of the foregoing services or provision of social allowances or indigent relief. ("services sociaux")
Subject as herein provided, the Government of Manitoba and each of the several municipalities in the province may take such measures as are necessary for the purpose of ensuring that no resident of Manitoba, lacks
(a) such things, goods, and services as are essential to his health and well-being, including food, clothing, shelter, and essential surgical, medical, optical, dental, and other remedial treatment, care, and attention; and
(b) an adequate funeral upon his death.
For the purpose mentioned in section 2 the government, through and at the discretion of, the director, may, out of the Consolidated Fund with moneys authorized by an Act of the Legislature to be so paid and applied, grant and pay to or for a recipient monthly or more frequently, an amount in money sufficient to pay the cost of the basic necessities of himself and his dependants.
The amount to be paid to or for any recipient under section 3, shall be determined after consideration of, and shall be based on the requirements in respect of, his basic necessities and those of his dependants, if he has dependants.
A social allowance shall be paid only to, or in respect of, a person who resides in Manitoba and who, if the social allowance were not paid, would, in the opinion of the director, be likely to lack the basic necessities and
(a) who, by reason of age or by reason of physical or mental ill health, or physical or mental incapacity or disorder that is likely to continue for more than 90 days
(i) is unable to earn an income sufficient to meet the basic necessities of himself and his dependants, if any ; or
(ii) is unable to care for himself and requires to be cared for by another person or in an institution or home for the aged or the infirm; or
(b) who is a widow or widower with a dependant child or dependant children; or
(c) who is a parent with a dependant child or children and
(i) is deserted by, or is living separate and apart from, his or her spouse for more than 90 days, or
(ii) is the spouse of a person who is sentenced to and is serving a prison term of more than for 90 days, or
(iii) is not married, or
(iv) is divorced; or
(d) who is a child that has been placed temporarily by the director or an agency without the transfer of guardianship in a foster home, group foster home or in an institution, in accordance with the provisions of The Child and Family Services Act; or
(e) who has been apprehended as a child in need of protection under The Child and Family Services Act and
(i) is in the charge of an agency during the period before the investigation by the judge under that Act, or
(ii) has been committed under that Act to the care and custody of an agency, or
(iii) having been committed, as described in sub-clause (ii), is admitted to a hospital and is in receipt of hospital care and treatment in respect of which he is not an insured person under The Health Services Insurance Act; or
(f) who is a child both of whose parents are dead or in the opinion of the director are unable to contribute to his maintenance and who is wholly dependent on another person for his basic necessities; or
(g) who has one or more dependants in need of special care as that expression is defined in the regulations; or
(h) who is undertaking undergraduate academic or technical vocational training and has insufficient income to meet the basic necessities of himself and his dependants, if any.
Notwithstanding the definition "financial resources", for the purpose of clause 5(l)(h) the financial resources of the parents of an applicant under that clause may be taken into consideration in approving or refusing the applicant for social allowance under that clause.
In the case of a person who
(a) is employed, or has any other source of income;
(b) has one or more dependants in need of special care; and
(c) is not otherwise eligible for social allowance; the social allowance may be granted only for the purpose of meeting the costs of the special care.
For the purposes of this section "special care" means care provided to a dependant of an applicant or recipient in a residential welfare institution that has been approved by the minister, or in a day nursery that has been approved by the minister, or care approved by the director and provided to a dependant by a nurse, housekeeper, or homemaker in the home of the applicant or recipient or in a foster home.
Where a man and a woman who are not legally married to each other are living together under circumstances that indicate to the director that they are living together under circumstances that indicate to the director that they are living together as if they were married to each other, they shall, for the purposes of this Act and the regulations, be considered as legally married to one another and any application by either or both of them for assistance or social allowances shall be dealt with in every respect as though they were married to one another.
The Lieutenant Governor in Council may, by regulation made by order in council, establish, for the purpose of this Act and as at the time of the making of the regulation, the cost of the several basic necessities or of those the cost of which should, in his opinion, be established from time to time.
If he deems that an applicant should receive a social allowance, the director shall, in accordance with the regulations and subject to subsection (2), by his written order fix the amount of the social allowance that shall be paid to him.
In accordance with the regulations, the director shall fix an amount that, in his opinion, will be sufficient to provide the applicant with an income sufficient to pay the cost of his basic necessities.
In fixing an amount of social allowance under subsection (1), the director, in accordance with the regulations, shall take into consideration the financial resources of the applicant and may deem to be part of the income of the applicant the value of any of the assets of the applicant and his dependants, if any, from any source, and he may include in that income an amount that in his opinion is the net value as income after payment of any charges applicable thereto, of
(a) the occupancy of any real property or other premises owned by the applicant or any of his dependants, if any, as living quarters, or which he occupies as living quarters without payment of rent therefor; and
(b) any food, clothing, or other necessities of life, or other essential services, regularly supplied to him and his dependants, if any, without charge therefor.
Subject to subsection (3), the receipt of a pension under the Old Age Security Act (Canada), does not of itself disqualify the recipient from receiving a social allowance under this Act.
Where a recipient has a right to bring an action against a person who is or might be indebted or liable to that recipient for payment of money and the recipient has not done so at the time that assistance is granted, the director or any person acting under the authority of the director may bring action in the name and on behalf of the recipient.
Payment of the cost of legal aid in civil matters, where furnished under The Legal Aid Services Society of Manitoba Act to persons who while the legal aid is being so furnished are receiving or are eligible to receive social allowances under this Act, is established as a class of benefits under this Act.
The class of benefits established under subsection (1) is additional to and separate from social allowances and neither the need for that class of benefits by any person nor the provision of that class of benefits to any person shall be taken into account as a factor in determining the eligibility or the extent of the eligibility of that person for a social allowance under this Act and the regulations.
Such monies out of any grants paid to The Legal Aid Services Society of Manitoba under subsection 25(2) of The Legal Aid Services Society of Manitoba Act as are used under that Act to pay the cost of legal aid in a civil matter furnished to a person who, while the legal aid is being so furnished, is receiving or is eligible to receive a social allowance under this Act are deemed to be monies paid and used for the purposes of this section.
Where, on the basis of information received by the director, the director is of the opinion that the social allowance being paid to a recipient
(a) should be discontinued; or
(b) should be reduced; or
(c) should be suspended; or
(d) should be increased;
the director, may by written order direct that the social assistance be discontinued, reduced, suspended or increased, as the case may require.
The director or a person acting under the authority of the director or a municipality shall forthwith notify an applicant or recipient or a person who has applied for or is or was receiving social allowance or municipal assistance in writing of any decision or order which denies, discontinues, reduces or suspends social allowance or municipal assistance to the applicant, recipient or person, stating the reasons for the decision or order and advising the applicant, recipient or person, as the case may be, that he has the right under the Act to appeal the decision or order to the appeal board and the right to be represented on appeal by counsel of his choice.
An applicant or a recipient or a person who has applied for, or is or was receiving, municipal assistance from a municipality may appeal to the appeal board where he feels his treatment was unfair because
(a) he was not allowed to apply or re-apply for social allowance or municipal assistance;
(b) his request for social allowance or municipal assistance or increase in social allowance or municipal assistance was not decided upon within a reasonable time;
(c) his application for social allowance or municipal assistance was denied:
(d) his social allowance or municipal assistance was cancelled, suspended, varied or withheld; or
(e) the amount of social allowance or municipal assistance granted is insufficient to meet his needs.
A person who receives a notice under subsection (2) and who desires to appeal a decision or order for any of the reasons set out in subsection (1), may within 15 days after receiving the notice, file a written notice of appeal with the appeal board setting out the grounds of the appeal.
Upon receipt of a notice of appeal under subsection (4), the chairman of the appeal board shall fix a date, time and place not later than 15 days after the date of the receipt of the notice, for the hearing of the appeal and shall give at least three clear days notice of the date, time and place fixed for the hearing of the appeal to
(a) the appellant; and
(b) the director or municipality, as the case may require.
Upon receipt of a notice of appeal from an appellant, the board shall forward a copy thereof to the respondent and the respondent shall forthwith provide the appeal board with
(a) a copy of the appellant's application for social allowance or municipal assistance;
(b) particulars of the financial resources of the appellant;
(c) evidence that the requirements of subsection (2) have been met; and
(d) a copy of any other record or document that may be relevant in determining the appeal.
On the date, and at the time and place, stated in the notice, the appeal board shall sit and hear any evidence adduced by or on behalf of, and representations made by or on behalf of, the person appealing, and the director or the municipality, as the case may be, and upon the hearing of an appeal the parties may appear on their own behalf or may be represented by any person of their own choosing or by counsel, and at the option of the appellant, the hearing may be held in camera or may be open to the public.
The appeal board may, by written order,
(a) dismiss the appeal; or
(b) dismiss the appeal and order the social allowance or municipal assistance be revoked or discontinued; or
(c) allow it and direct that a social allowance or municipal assistance in an amount stated in the order be paid to the appellant; or
(d) allow it and vary the order or direction made by the director or the municipality ;
and if the appeal is allowed the director or the municipality shall pay a social allowance or municipal assistance to the appellant from the date of the order of the appeal board as provided in that order.
An appeal lies from any final order or decision of the appeal board to the Court of Appeal upon
(a) any question involving the jurisdiction of the board; or
(b) any point of law.
The appeal shall be taken only by leave of a judge of the Court of Appeal, within one month after the making of the order or decision sought to be appealed from, or within such further time as the judge under special circumstances shall allow, and after notice to the other parties stating the grounds of appeal.
Where a municipality provides by by-law for the granting of municipal assistance, this section, except subsection (1), applies in respect of the municipal assistance granted or that may be granted by the municipality to persons in need and to persons who have applied to the municipality for, or were or are receiving municipal assistance from the municipality.
The Court of Appeal may make rules of practice respecting appeals under this section, but until such rules are made the rules and practice applicable to appeals from a judge of the Court of Queen's Bench in civil matters to the Court of Appeal shall apply.
In any appeal to the Court of Appeal the normal fees payable by law shall be waived, and where an applicant or recipient for social allowance or municipal assistance succeeds upon his appeal, the court, in the light of all the circumstances, may fix the costs to be paid to such applicant or recipient.
Where the appeal of such applicant or recipient for social allowance or municipal assistance is dismissed, the court, in the light of all the circumstances, may fix the costs and fees to be taxed, allowed and paid to the director, notwithstanding the waiver of fees under the provisions of subsection (13).
If a person in need who is not a recipient under this Act resides or is found in a municipality, which has undertaken by by-law to provide assistance, he may apply to the clerk of the municipality for aid or maintenance, and the municipality may make provision for and make payment in respect of his assistance, in such manner as it could make provision and payments under section 443 of The Municipal Act with respect to a person who is a resident of the municipality within the meaning of that Act.
If a person in need who is not a recipient under this Act is a person to whom subsection (1) does not apply, he may apply to the director for assistance: and the government, through the director, may, out of the Consolidated Fund with moneys authorized by an Act of the Legislature to be so paid and applied, make provision for his assistance, in the manner in which a municipality is authorized under subsection (1) to make such provision in like circumstances with respect to a person in need who resides or is found in the municipality.
From and out of the Consolidated Fund, with moneys authorized by an Act of the Legislature to be so paid and applied, the Minister of Finance shall, subject to subsection (2), pay to each municipality in respect of each year, 80% of the amount by which the cost of the municipal assistance provided by that municipality during that year exceeds an amount that is equivalent to a levy of one mill on each dollar of the equalized assessment of that municipality in that year.
Where 40% of the cost of the municipal assistance provided by a municipality in any year exceeds the amount that that municipality is entitled to be paid in respect of that year under subsection (1), the Minister of Finance, out of the Consolidated Fund, with moneys authorized by an Act of the Legislature to be so paid and applied, shall pay to that municipality in respect of that year, in lieu of the payment required under subsection (1), 40% of the cost of the municipal assistance so provided by the municipality in that year.
Notwithstanding subsections (1) and (2), the government is not required to pay to any municipality any grant with respect to any part of the cost of municipal assistance provided by the municipality, that is not shared or shareable by the Government of Canada.
The clerk, of each municipality shall file with the minister for each month a return, in a form prescribed by the minister, showing the cost of the municipal assistance provided by the municipality in that month and such other information as may be required.
The minister shall calculate the amounts payable to each municipality under subsections (1) and (2) on the basis of the returns filed by the clerk of the municipality under subsection (4); and he shall, as may be required, requisition from the Minister of Finance cheques in favour of each municipality for the amounts payable to it under this section from time to time.
Where a municipality
(a) grants assistance to persons in need who are in need, and not eligible to receive social allowance under this Act;
(b) grants the assistance in accordance with a schedule of assistance which meets the cost of basic necessities as determined from time to time under by-law of the municipality ;
(c) by by-law authorizes officers of the municipality to grant such assistance to persons without regard to their residence as determined under The Municipal Act;
that assistance shall subject to subsection (7) be conclusively deemed, for the purposes of this Act, and in particular for the purposes of this section to be municipal assistance provided by the municipality.
Where a municipality grants assistance in the manner described in subsection (6) to a person who is not resident in the municipality as determined under The Municipal Act, the Minister of Finance, on the requisition of the minister, shall pay to the municipality an amount equal to the amount of such assistance.
Notwithstanding sections 13 and 14, a municipality is not entitled to receive
(a) any payments under section 13; or
(b) any payments in respect of the costs of a work activity project or of social services, that are deemed to be municipal assistance under section 14;
unless it grants assistance in the manner described in subsection 11(6).
From and out of the Consolidated Fund, the Minister of Finance shall pay to each municipality in respect of each year a grant equal to 50% of the amount by which its costs in that year for salary and wages of staff of the municipality engaged in full-time social services work exceeds its costs in the year 1964 for such purposes; and subsections 11(4) and (5) apply, with such modifications as the circumstances require, in respect of the grants made under this section.
A municipality, by itself or in cooperation with another person, may carry out a project of work activity
(a) approved as such by the minister; and
(b) that, in the opinion of the minister, would not be undertaken except with the support granted under this Act;
and, where a municipality carries out such a project, the costs thereof to the municipality as prescribed in the regulations shall be conclusively deemed, for the purposes of this Act, to be municipal assistance provided by the municipality.
A municipality, by itself or in cooperation with another person, may provide social services specifically approved by the minister in respect of that municipality; and, where a municipality provides such social services, the costs thereof to the municipality as prescribed in the regulations shall be conclusively deemed, for the purposes of this Act, to be municipal assistance provided by the municipality.
The Government of Manitoba, represented therein by the minister, may, with the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, enter into an agreement or agreements with the Government of Canada as to a general scheme whereby the Government of Manitoba may from time to time make claims on the Government of Canada for, and be paid by it, grants of moneys as reimbursement in whole or in part
(a) of the cost incurred by the Government of Manitoba for the purpose of providing social allowances and for the purposes of providing, under subsection 10(2), assistance to persons in need to whom that subsection applies, or for either of those purposes; and
(b) of the cost of the municipal assistance provided by municipalities in the province;
including the costs of administration in both cases where so agreed.
The Government of Manitoba, represented therein by the minister, may, with the approval of the Lieutenant Governor in Council, enter into an agreement with the Crown in right of another province of Canada, or with the Crown in right of Canada or other duly constituted authority administering a territory of Canada
(a) for the payment of social allowances to residents of that other province or that territory who are temporarily in Manitoba;
(b) for the granting of moneys or assistance equivalent to a social allowance to residents of Manitoba who are temporarily in that other province or that territory; and
(c) for the administration of municipal assistance on behalf of each of the several municipalities in the province;
upon such terms and conditions as may be mutually satisfactory to the parties to the agreement.
The minister is responsible for the administration of this Act; and the director shall make an annual report to the minister respecting the administration thereof.
The minister shall lay the annual report before the Legislative Assembly forthwith if it is then in session and, if not, then within 15 days of the beginning of the next following session thereof.
Any person may make application for a social allowance.
Every application shall be made to the director in such form, and containing such information, as may be prescribed by the minister.
For the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Act according to their intent, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make such regulations and orders as are ancillary thereto and are not inconsistent therewith; and every regulation or order made under, and in accordance with the authority granted by, this section has the force of law; and, without restricting the generality of the foregoing, the Lieutenant Governor in Council may make regulations and orders,
(a) approving the kinds of expenditures made by municipalities that may be included by the municipality in the cost of municipal assistance provided by it;
(b) establishing the cost of the basic necessities as provided in section 6;
(c) prescribing rules for determining the income and financial resources of applicants and providing that certain income or classes of income shall be excluded from, or included in, the calculation of the income and financial resources of an applicant;
(d) prescribing rules for determining the amount of social allowance that a recipient is entitled to receive and for determining whether an applicant is entitled to receive any social allowance:
(e) fixing the amount of social allowance that may be paid to an applicant;
(f) prescribing procedures to be followed in the administration of the Act and prescribing forms for use for any purpose under this Act or the regulations, or providing that forms prescribed by the minister shall be used for any purpose under this Act or the regulations;
(g) prescribing conditions that a recipient is required to comply with in order to be eligible to continue to receive social allowance or an applicant is required to comply with to be eligible to receive social allowance;
(h) prescribing the manner in which and the times at which returns and information required to be submitted by municipalities under this Act or the regulations shall be submitted;
(i) respecting the work activity projects or social services that may be approved by the minister under section 14;
(j) prescribing the costs that may be included in the costs of a municipality for a work activity project or for social services;
(k) prescribing forms and rules for the purpose of clause 5(l)(h) to determine the financial resources of the applicant, his parents or both;
(l) prescribing terms for discharging any lien and charge for the purposes of section 21;
(m) defining words, phrases or forms for which no definition is given in the Act.
A regulation under clause (l)(c) may, notwithstanding the provisions of The Regulations Act, be made with retroactive effect, but only to the extent that it applies to any additional benefits receivable by a recipient.
A regulation under clauses (l)(d) and (e) may be made with retroactive effect.
Where the government has provided or paid assistance or any social allowance to or for a person, if the assistance or social allowance, or any part thereof, would not have been provided or paid except for
(a) a false statement or misrepresentation made by the person; or
(b) an error;
the government may recover from the person, or his executors or administrators, or his spouse, or the executors or administrators of his spouse, and, if the person is an infant, his parent or guardian or any person legally liable to pay his expenses, the amount of that assistance or social allowance or that part thereof as a debt due and owing from the person to the Crown.
Where the government has provided or paid assistance or any social allowance to or for a person, if the assistance or social allowance or any part thereof would not have been provided or paid except for the neglect or failure of another person to comply with any law or the order of any court requiring that other person to maintain or to contribute toward the maintenance of the person to or for whom the assistance or social allowance or part was provided or paid, the government may recover from that other person, or his executors or administrators, the amount of that assistance or social allowance or part, up to the total amount that the other person neglected or failed to provide or pay, as a debt due and owing from that other person to the Crown.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act or the regulations, where under subsection (1) or (2), a person who is liable to pay an amount of social allowance paid to him as a debt to the Crown in right of Manitoba, is a recipient the director may authorize the deduction of an amount that would not cause undue hardship to the recipient from each subsequent payment of social allowance to that person until the amount of the indebtedness of that person is discharged.
Where pursuant to subsection (3), deductions are made from the social allowance payable to a person and the allowance is for any reason discontinued or terminated and the amount deducted is insufficient to discharge his indebtedness to the Crown, the unpaid balance continues to be a debt owed by that person to the Crown, until fully paid and discharged.
(a) a debt becomes due and owing from a person to the Crown under section 20; or
(b) the government has made any payment to or for a person to cover
(i) the principal portion of any instalment payable under a real property mortgage or an agreement for the sale of land, or any part of that principal portion, or
(ii) arrears of real property taxes, or any part of those arrears, the minister may register in any land titles office in the province a statement certifying the amount of the debt and naming the person indebted.
From the time of its registration, a statement registered under subsection (1) forms a lien in favor of the Crown against the estate or interest in any land of the person named in the statement for the amount certified in the statement together with the amount of
(a) any debt that becomes owing from the person to the Crown under section 20 after the statement is certified; or
(b) any payment of a kind described in clause (1)(b) made after the statement is certified.
A statement submitted for registration under subsection (1) shall be registered on its mere production, without any affidavit of execution.
A lien created by the registration of a statement under subsection (1) may be discharged by the registration in the same office where the statement is registered of a discharge executed by the minister.
When a statement is registered against an identified parcel of land, the District Registrar shall forthwith notify the registered owner of the registration by registered mail sent to the address shown on the title.
(a) who makes a false statement in any form, application, record or return prescribed or required by this Act or by the regulations: or
(b) who fails to inform the director of a material change in circumstances affecting his entitlement to any social allowance or assistance, within 30 days of the commencement of the change;
is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding $500. or to imprisonment not exceeding three months or to both.
Where a judge or justice finds a person guilty of an offence under subsection (1) he may, in addition to any penalty imposed under subsection (1) order the person to repay to the Crown any moneys obtained by that person by reason of the commission of the offence.
Where moneys are ordered to be paid under subsection (2), the director may file or cause to be filed, a certified copy thereof, in the Court of Queen's Bench and thereupon the order shall be deemed to be, and enforceable as, a judgment of the court in favour of the Crown in right of Manitoba.
Notwithstanding anything in this Act or in any other Act of the Legislature, no information or complaint in respect of an offence under this section shall be laid or made after the expiration of four years from the time when the matter or cause giving rise to the information or complaint arose.