At what age is someone considered a senior?

Region: Ontario Answer # 1734

There is no generally accepted age that determines when one becomes a senior citizen. It is an important question, though, since seniors may be entitled to a variety of benefits ranging from shopping discounts to government benefits.

Basically, a private organization, such as a social club or retail outlet, can make its own rules for determining “seniors” status. Often, 55 is the age someone is considered eligible for a seniors’ discount.


Federal and provincial seniors status

Federal and provincial governments may also make their own rules. For example, some government services for senior citizens are available as soon as an individual attains 55 years of age.

Certain government financial benefits, however, such as the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), the Old Age Security Benefit (OAS), and the Ontario Drug Benefit (ODB), often don’t become available until a person is at least 60 or 65, depending on the type of benefit and the eligibility requirements.

More information about services and programs available to seniors in Ontario, can be found from the Ontario Ministry for Seniors and Accessibility.

For information on federal benefits available to seniors, visit the Government of Canada’s Benefits for Seniors website at canadabenefits.gc.ca.


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