Please find a comprehensive breakdown of important information and federal government supports to help you during the COVID-19 outbreak.
The situation with COVID-19 is evolving rapidly. For the most up-to-date information, visit Canada.ca/coronavirus. The Government of Canada info line is open 7 a.m. – midnight, 7 days a week: 1 (833) 784-4397.
For Coronavirus infected Workers:
- The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) ends when you’ve received 28 weeks of benefits or on October 3, 2020, whichever comes first. For those who applied through the Canada Revenue Agency, the last four-week period for the CERB was August 30, 2020 through September 26, 2020. However, you can still apply for the CERB retroactively through CRA.
- The Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) will provide $500 per week (taxable, tax deducted at source) for up to 26 weeks per household for workers unable to work for at least 50% of the week because they must care for a child under the age of 12 or family member because schools, day-cares or care facilities are closed due to COVID-19, or because the child or family member is sick and/or required to quarantine or is at high risk of serious health implications because of COVID-19. This benefit will be paid in one-week periods.
- The Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) will provide $500 per week (taxable, tax deducted at source) for up to a maximum of two weeks, for workers who are unable to work for at least 50% of the week because they contracted COVID-19, self-isolated for reasons related to COVID-19, or have underlying conditions, are undergoing treatments or have contracted other sicknesses that, in the opinion of a medical practitioner, nurse practitioner, person in authority, government or public health authority, would make them more susceptible to COVID-19. This benefit will be paid in one-week periods.
For Individuals and Families:
- Increasing Canada Child Benefit: an extra $300 per child for the 2019-20 benefit year. Qualifying parents receive the entire extra amount with their scheduled May payment.
- Special top-up to the GST tax credit in the amount of $5.5 billion. $400 for individuals, $600 for couples.
- $305 million to address immediate needs in Indigenous communities.
- $50 million to support women’s shelters and sexual assault centres.
- $157.5 million to address the needs of the homeless
- Broadening eligibility for financial assistance and raising the maximum weekly amount that can be provided to a student in 2020-21 from $210 to $350
- Doubling the Canada Student Grants for all eligible full-time students up to $6,000 and up to $3,600 for part-time students in 2020-21.
- For low and modest income seniors we’re providing a supplementary payment under the GST Credit of $400 per adult and $600 per couple.
- A one-time tax-free payment of $300 for seniors eligible for the Old Age Security (OAS) pension, with an additional $200 for seniors eligible for the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS). This measure would give a total of $500 to individuals who are eligible to receive both the OAS and the GIS.
- Temporarily extending GIS and Allowance payments if seniors’ 2019 income information has not been assessed. To avoid an interruption in benefits, seniors are encouraged to submit their 2019 income information as soon as possible and no later than by October 1, 2020.
- Withdrawal flexibility from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs), reducing minimum withdrawals from RRIF’s by 25% for 2020.
- Boosting federal aid for at-risk Canadian seniors, contributing $9 million through United Way Canada to help the country’s older population get groceries, medication and other critical items.
- One time top-up of $600 for those with Disability Tax Credit, implemented Oct 30th, 2020.
- Canada Emergency Business Account: $40,000 loans, guaranteed by government, interest-free for first year, and $10,000 forgivable. Speak to your financial institution about eligibility after reading more at BDC’s website.
- Additional $12.5 billion through BDC and EDC for their credit facilities for business loans
- Deferral of GST/HST payments, as well as duties and taxes owed on imports until June. Equivalent of $30 billion in interest-free loans.
- Allow all businesses to defer, until after August 31, 2020, the payment of any income tax owing before September 2020. No interest will accrue.
- Increased wage subsidy from 10% to 75% for qualifying businesses, non-profits, and other eligible employers (and up to 100% for CSJ recipients, see above):
- Eligible employers would be able to apply for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy through the Canada Revenue Agency’s My Business Account portal as well as a web-based application. Employers would have to keep records demonstrating their reduction in arm’s-length revenues and remuneration paid to employees. More details about the application process will be made available shortly.
- Wage subsidy eligibility and calculation info from CRA can be accessed here.
- Wage subsidy info from Finance will be updated here.
- businesses and non-profit organizations seeing a revenue decline in March of 15% or more due to COVID-19 will qualify for the wage subsidy. You now have the option of using January and February as reference periods to show a 30% revenue loss
- charities and non-profits can choose to include or exclude government funding when calculating loss of revenue
- federal government will cover up to 75 per cent on the first $58,700 of earnings, up to a maximum of $847 a week per worker, back-dated to March 15.
- size of the company will not bear on whether it qualifies for the help.
- businesses are encouraged to top-up their employees’ remaining 25% of wages.
- comprehensive backgrounder for the wage subsidy can be accessed here.
- Increased financing support through BDC, EDC, Farm Credit Canada.
- Launch an insured mortgage purchase program to purchase up to $50 billion of insured mortgage pools through CMHC.
- The federal government has established a designated website for Resources for Canadian Businesses – for information about supporting employees and business owners. It is constantly updated as the COVID-19 crisis evolves.
- The Canada Business App has tailored supports to address every business’ needs in the face of COVID-19.
- Every business is encouraged to consult the Canadian Chamber of Commerce’s pandemic preparedness guide
- A helpful infographic is available for the government support options for business here.
- Industry interested in helping the government’s response are asked to visit this website.
- Canada’s big banks have also announced that they will allow mortgage payments to be deferred by up to 6 months for those affected.