Frequently Asked Questions
Why use the CPP Calculator?
The amount you will receive monthly from the Canada Pension Plan is based on when you select to start your benefit. Your Statement of Contributions provides you with an estimate based on you starting your benefit at age 65. Depending on how many years away you are from starting your benefit that number can be highly inaccurate.
That is why the CPP Calculator exists. To help you get a more accurate and realistic estimate of what your benefit will be depending on when you start it.
What information do I need to use the CPP Calculator?
In order to use the CPP Calculator you will need your Statement of Contributions. A paper copy can be obtained by calling 1-800-277-9914 but we recommend that you create a My Services Canada Account and obtain your Statement of Contributions that way.
With your Statement of Contributions on the screen, left click on the information and save the web page to your computer as a *.html file. Doing this will allow you to upload the *.html file you just saved into the CPP Calculator. All the information will be pulled from the saved file and imported automatically into the calculator.
Not only is importing the information into the CPP Calculator easier and faster it is also more accurate as the accuracy of the result can only be as good as the information put into the calculator.
Will my information be safe?
We will not collect any information about you or your benefits. The results and data will not be stored. Once the results are generated you will have the ability to save them locally, but if you need to calculate the benefit again, you’ll have to do it all over again. Since the bulk of the calculation is done with the uploaded Statement of Contributions, doing the calculation a second time should not take much time.
What does the CPP Calculator not do?
The CPP Calculator in its first version will not factor in additional dropout periods from child care or disability. If you qualify for these extra dropouts, it can dramatically increase your benefit amount. It is recommended to get a custom calculated CPP benefit amount from a specialist. Please contact us and we can help you with this.
What is the difference between the CPP Calculator and the CPP Quiz?
The CPP Calculator exists simply to help you get a more accurate estimate of what your Canada Pension Plan benefit will be. The CPP Quiz helps you take the information generated from the CPP Calculator and look at the other factors that are important to consider in deciding when to start your CPP benefit. Deciding when to start your benefit is not simply a numbers decision. That is why the CPP Quiz exists to help guide your decision.
Why can’t I just start my CPP benefit whenever I want?
You can. But you could be leaving a lot of money on the table by deciding just to do that. For the vast majority of Canadians, the Canada Pension Plan is their only pension, an income that is guaranteed for life, will keep up with the cost of living (inflation) and can pay a significant bonus by delaying the start date.
That is why the CPP Calculator and CPP Quiz tools exist to help you make one of your most important financial decisions.
How does the CPP Calculator differ from Service Canada's estimates?
The CPP Calculator uses whatever figures you enter whereas Service Canada makes an assumption that you were eligible for CPP in the year of the statement. This has the same effect as projecting your average lifetime earnings through until age 65. This can impact your benefit calculation by either making it too high or too low compared with using more accurate assumptions of future earnings.
Does the CPP Calculator calculate Enhanced CPP?
Yes. The CPP Calculator includes the enhanced CPP increases for earnings in 2019 and subsequent years, whereas Service Canada's estimates do not. This can make a big difference if you are working past 2019 and contributing to the Canada Pension Plan.
How can I get help or ask a question?
Whether you have a question about the CPP Calculator or specific questions about your retirement income decisions (like when to start your CPP benefit) you can reach David Field of Papyrus Planning by email at dave[at]papyrusplan[dot]com or toll free at 1-844-606-PLAN.