Since the Prime Minister of Canada announced the COVID-19 Economic Response Plan on March 18th, there has been a steady stream of updates and additions. With so much information to go through, it can be a challenge to stay on top of the programs and supports that are available to you.
To help make it easy for you, 4 Pillars has pulled together all Government programs and supports in one place written in plain language. We regularly update this information when new details are posted to Government websites or when they are announced through press conferences.
Please Note: The programs and benefits detailed below are collected from publicly available Government websites. For further details, see 'Useful links' at the end of this article.
Here are the main programs and supports available to individuals and families who have been financially affected by Covid-19.
Whether you’ve been laid off, are sick or caring for someone who is sick; this benefit supports any person that has lost their income due to Covid-19. The CERB provides $2000/month for up to 4 months (you may need to re-apply monthly) and is also available to the self-employed.
Eligibility criteria include:
Note: On June 23, the federal government extended the time period for temporary layoffs by up to six months, giving employers more time to recall employees who were laid off due to COVID-19. Before the extension a worker would be deemed terminated if their temporary layoff notice expired before their employer brought them back to work.
Government made these changes to help protect the jobs of federally regulated private-sector employees and support employers facing economic hardship as a result of the pandemic.
For more details on CERB visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/cerb-application.html
For more details on this program visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/cerb-application.html
Families with children will receive an extra $300 per child through an additional payment of the Canada Child Benefit in May for 2019-20
If you already receive the CCB do not need to re-apply.
You can find out if you already receive the benefit by logging into CRA's ‘My Account' application and confirming the details. If you don’t receive it and think you are eligible visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/child-family-benefits/canada-child-benefit-overview/canada-child-benefit-apply.html
Government is providing a one-time special payment starting on April 9 through the Goods and Services Tax credit for low and modest-income families.
Individuals can expect to receive $400 while couples will get $600.
This credit will be provided automatically to those that are eligible, no need to apply.
Providing a monthly benefit of $1,250 ($2,000 for people with disabilities) to students and new graduates who are not eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit or Employment Insurance or unable to work due to COVID-19.
The benefit will be available from May to August 2020.
Post secondary students and recent graduates can apply starting May 15: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/emergency-student-benefit.html
*More detail to be provided by Government: https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html#individuals
This freeze only applies to the federal portion of student loans - check with provincial/territorial student loan providers to see if similar programs are in place.
More details: https://www.csnpe-nslsc.canada.ca/en/what-is-new
The grant will be worth between $1,000 and $5,000, depending on the number of hours completed. For every 100 hours worked, the student is eligible for $1,000, which means someone must volunteer 500 hours to receive the full grant.
The program was launched on June 24 and runs until Oct. 31, 2020.
For more information visit the "I want to help" online platform for details.
In order to provide greater flexibility to Canadians who may be experiencing hardships during the COVID-19 outbreak, the CRA will defer the filing due date for the 2019 tax returns of individuals, including certain trusts.
Those with a mortgage may be entitled to a 6-month deferral of payments as part of the Covid-19 response. Borrowers are encouraged to speak to their banks for further details and to find out if they are eligible.
- o Seniors who qualify for Old Age Security (OAS) will be eligible for a one-time, tax-free payment of $300, and those eligible for the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS) will get an extra $200 - those eligible for both will receive $500.
- o Reducing the required minimum withdrawals from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) by 25% for 2020. Similar rules would apply to individuals receiving variable benefit payments under a defined contribution Registered Pension Plan.
- o Providing practical services to seniors like delivery of groceries, medications or other essential needs through a $20 million investment in the New Horizons Seniors Program
Last Update: June 25, 2020 ver 1.9