Calgary Legal Guidance

Social Benefits
Advocacy Program

Social Benefits Advocacy Program

CLG’s Social Benefits Advocacy Program (SBAP) offers information, advice and guidance to those facing challenges with the
Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH) Program. 
We can help with many issues including benefit denials,
cut-offs and assessed overpayments.
We may even be able to represent you at appeal.

CLG staff lawyers and advocates may be able to help you with your legal problem if:

You cannot afford a lawyer, and

You do not qualify for Legal Aid Alberta

As a client focused organization, CLG provides free, confidential,
legal representation, information, advice and advocacy to individuals
in a positive, inclusive and supportive environment.

Our Social Benefits Advocacy Program can assist clients with:

Keeping existing AISH benefits

Increasing your AISH benefit amount

Appealing an AISH benefit denial decision or change in benefits

Obtaining medical documentation

Preparing for an appeal hearing

Understanding AISH legislation, regulation and policies

Connecting with community supports

CLG provides many services to individuals who meet our financial guidelines.

Here are some of the ways we can help you:

Provide you with information about your rights and next steps

Explain how to apply for AISH benefits or how to appeal a decision

Help you appeal if your application for AISH benefits was rejected/denied

Provide guidance for representing yourself at an AISH appeal

Provide representation at appeal in some cases

Connect you to other community support organizations that can help

Please call our office for more information on our services and how we can help meet your needs.

AISH: Frequently Asked Questions

What is AISH?

AISH is a monthly benefit available to Alberta residents who can show, through recent medical documentation, that they have a permanent and severe medical condition that prevents them from earning a livelihood in any capacity. Specialists reports are usually required. AISH issues up to $1,787.00 per month along with any additional benefits to help cover medications, special diet costs, etc. to those who qualify.

Verification of financial resources is also required as part of the eligibility process.
For more information on this benefit, please visit the following website:

What is AISH looking for?

Detailed information on the specific criteria required for AISH approval can be found by visiting the following website:

Reach out to the SBAP program to see how we can help you navigate the AISH process, or if you have any questions. Our aim is to try and help you satisfy the AISH eligibility criteria, if at all possible.

How do I apply for AISH and who can help me?

SBAP can help answer questions about the AISH application process, which is now online. Visit this website:

We can help guide you with filling out the application, as well as review completed applications for feedback and next steps. We cannot, however, physically fill out the applications for you. Reach out and let us help guide you on which agencies are available to help, if you need assistance with completing the forms.

How long does it take to get on AISH?

There is no guaranteed timeline for when, or if, you’ll even be approved for AISH benefits. Some people receive approval quickly after submitting their first application. This usually occurs when applicants provide medical evidence to demonstrate that they have completed all available treatment options and they remain unable to work in any way. Other people must follow through with prescribed treatments and gather additional medical evidence to confirm the severity and permanence of their condition(s), or eventually proceed to an appeal hearing before the Citizens Appeal Panel before being approved. Some people never obtain approval because, despite best efforts, they lack the documentation needed which shows they meet all the necessary eligibility criteria for AISH. All in all, it really depends on each individual’s unique circumstances.

I applied for AISH, but I was denied. What do I do now?

You can either choose to appeal the denial decision within the 30 day timeline and proceed to a hearing before the Citizen’s Appeal Panel,
OR submit additional medical evidence for review within the one year timeline from your date of denial.


If you choose to appeal, it’s important to note that you cannot submit additional medical information for review, as this will not be accepted or considered by the Citizen’s Appeal Panel. This is a change that arose with an updating of the AISH Regulations as of April 1, 2022. If you would like AISH to consider new medical information, you may withdraw your appeal and submit your documents for consideration. If the new information does not reverse the AISH denial decision, you can then submit a new appeal.

No Appeal:

If you choose to forgo the appeal process, you can still submit additional evidence to AISH for consideration for up to 1 year’s time of your original denial date. AISH will make a decision to continue to deny, or approve you for benefits depending on their review of the new information submitted. Each time you submit new information that does not change the original denial decision, AISH will give you an additional 30 day time limit to appeal that new decision. There is no limit on how much new medical you can submit to AISH within the 1 year period of your denial.

Whatever you decide to do, inquire with SBAP to see how we can help and what we would recommend as the best option moving forward for your case.

Also, please visit the following site to obtain further information on AISH appeals:

I was receiving AISH, but my benefits have changed/stopped. What do I do now?

Reach out to your AISH worker, if you can, to better understand what is going on. Be sure to obtain a copy of their decision in writing. If you disagree with the change or stop in benefits, you can reach out to SBAP to see if we can help. For assessed overpayments you will need to appeal the overpayment assessment within 30 days, if possible.

I have an AISH appeal hearing scheduled. How can I prepare?

We are working on an appeal preparation guide to help individuals prepare for the AISH appeal hearing. We will post a link to the appeal preparation guide here when it is completed.

I can’t reach my worker. What can I do?

You can always ask to speak to your worker’s supervisor at AISH, if needed. Unfortunately, SBAP does not have the ability to make AISH internal processes go faster.If you have access to a computer, you can email AISH at Be sure to provide your name and contact information along with a brief description of your concerns.

I have concerns about AISH legislation, policy/etc. What can I do?

You can speak to your local MLA or the Ombudsman’s Office about any concerns you may have about AISH legislation, regulations, and/or policy. SBAP is unable to correspond with MLAs on behalf of clients or any politically affiliated persons or groups.

More Information

SBAP can help support and guide you in dealing with the following social benefit programs:

Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH)

Income Support (Alberta Works)

Alberta Adult/Child Health Benefit

To access support or for information on the Social Benefits Advocacy Program, please call
SBAP hotline extension after the phone number, (403) 716-6479 Ext. 0.

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