The Ultimate Guide to Canada’s COVID-19 Financial Support

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Not only has COVID-19 affected our health but it has a major impact on our economy. With businesses being told to close down, countless people have been laid off, losing their jobs and are struggling to pay their bills with no income. The Government of Canada has constructed numerous financial and economic support for Canadians facing hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. We’ve gathered major support from the government for you, so find out if you’re eligible for any of these benefits!

 

EI (Employment Insurance)

 

Employment Insurance (EI) provides regular benefits to individuals who lose their jobs through no fault of their own and are available for and able to work, but can’t find a job. 

 

Eligibility:

– were employed in insurable employment;

– lost your job through no fault of your own;

– have been without work and without pay for at least seven consecutive days in the last 52 weeks;

– have worked for the required number of insurable employment hours in the last 52 weeks or since the start of your last EI claim, whichever is shorter;

– are ready, willing and capable of working each day;

– are actively looking for work (you must keep a written record of employers you contact, including when you contacted them).

 

To Apply:

Submit an application online. You must complete bi-weekly reports to prove your eligibility and to receive benefits. You should receive the first payment within 28 days of the application date with all required documents. 

 

CERB (Canada Emergency Response Benefit)

 

CERB is a support that provides a taxable benefit of $2000 every 4 weeks for up to 16 weeks to eligible workers who have lost their income due to COVID-19.

 

 

CERB

 

NOTE : If you have already applied for EI, you don’t have to apply again for CERB.

To see more information, please visit CERB from the Government of Canada.

 

CEWS (Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy)

 

The CEWS supports employers that are hardest hit by the pandemic, and protect the jobs Canadians depend on. The government is providing support for businesses to avoid layoffs and rehiring employees. The subsidy covers 75% of an employee’s wages – up to $847 per week – for employers of all sizes and across all sectors who have suffered a drop in gross revenues of at least 15% in March.

 

Eligibility:

– drop of at least 15% of their revenue in March 2020 and 30% for the following months

 

CEWS Eligible Periods

 

To Apply:

 

Eligible employers are able to apply through CRA’s My Business Account Portal. Employers will need to keep records demonstrating their reduction in arm’s-length revenues and remuneration paid to employees

 

For more information, please visit the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy from the Government of Canada.  

 

Tax Filing Deadlines Extended 

 

Tax Filing Deadline Extended

 

Also, the government is providing a one-time special payment starting from April 9 through the Goods and Services Tax Credit for low- and modest-income families. The average additional benefit will be close to $400 for single individuals and close to $600 for couples.

 

Mortgage Deferrals

 

Canadians who are impacted by COVID-19 and experiencing financial hardship as a result should contact their financial institution regarding flexibility for a mortgage deferral. This gives flexibility to be available − when needed − to those who need it the most.

 

Please contact your financial institution for further mortgage assistance and read more details on Candian Bankers Association.

 

 

CEBA (Canadian Emergency Business Account)

 

CEBA provides credit to small businesses to pay for immediate operating costs such as payroll, rent, utilities, insurance, property tax, or debt service. It is 100 percent funded by the Government of Canada.

 

Under CEBA, financial institutions will be able to provide interest-free credit facilities of up to $40,000 to eligible businesses.

 

Eligibility:

– Canadian employers with payrolls in 2019 between $20,000 and $1.5 million and are operating as of March 1, 2020.

 

To Apply:

Please contact your financial institution for more details and how to access the CEBA.

 

 

Financial SUPPORT for BC Residents 

 

 

B.C Emergency Benefit For Workers

 

 

The B.C Emergency Benefit For Workers provides a one time $1,000 payment to people whose ability to work has been affected due to COVID-19.

B.C residents who receive federal EI or the CERB are eligible.

Applications will open soon with more details.

 

BC Temporary Rental Supplement Program

 

BC Housing

 

If you’re struggling to pay your rental fees, the BC-TRS Program gives tenants and landlords temporary support towards rent payments for renters impacted by COVID-19 for April, May and June 2020.. Payments are made directly to the landlords of eligible households. It will cover part of the rent for low and moderate-income renters who have lost income as a result of COVID-19. 

The program gives $300 per month for eligible households with no dependents, and $500 per month for eligible households with dependents.

 

 

Tenant Eligibility:

 

1. Have a 2019 gross household income of less than:

– $74,150 for singles and couples without dependents

– $113,040 for households with dependents


2. As a result of COVID-19:

– Be receiving or eligible for Employment Insurance; or

– Be receiving or eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit offered by the federal government; or

– Have experienced, and be able to provide evidence of, a drop of 25% or more in monthly household employment income

 

3. Be paying more than 30% of current household income towards rent

 

 

Application:

 

Tenants must start the application and landlords complete the application. 

Please note that you need an Identification, Proof of Income for 2019, Proof of Income Loss and/or Current  Income, Proof of Tenancy and Rent, and Landlord Name & Contact Information

 

BC Housing Application

 

Apply online and find out more information on BC Housing

 

Other Monthly Bills

 

Other Monthly Bills

 

BC Hydro 

 

Apply online on BC Hydro’s Relief Fund or Customer Crisis Fund.

 

ICBC

 

Apply online on ICBC’s website.

 

FortisBC

 

Residential FortisBC customers can sign up for the COVID-19 Customer Recovery Fund to automatically have their bills deferred from April 1 to June 30, 2020

A repayment schedule, free of interest or additional fees, will be set up and payments can be spread over a full year.

– For small businesses that have been forced to close, FortisBC will issue bill credits to offset any charges to their account while they have been unable to continue operating their business as usual

– Businesses that are still open, but facing a slowdown in revenue, will not receive bill credits but can also receive bill deferral for the same 90-day period

 

 

B.C. Student Loans

 

Starting March 30, 2020, B.C. student loan payments are automatically frozen for six months.

 

 

Additional Resources:

 

Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

BC Financial Support

BC Centre for Disease Control

Healthlink BC – COVID-19 Resources

 

 

These are only a few of the financial supports in response to COVID-19 for Canadians and there are more to come. Please don’t hesitate to take advantage of these supports as they are made for you. We’re all facing this challenge together and with everyone’s efforts, we can overcome this pandemic! Our team wishes nothing but safety and health to everyone. If you have any questions regarding housing, real estate, and more, please contact us and stay connected! We are always available for you through phone and email.  

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