Gone are the days when general ledgers consisted of huge
- Registered Retirement Income Fund (RRIF): minimum withdrawal for 2020 can be reduced by 25% in recognition of volatile market conditions.
- Canadian banks will offer mortgage support to Canadians facing financial hardships due to the COVID-19 including flexibility for a mortgage deferral. Contact your financial institution for more information.
- The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (“CERB”) which provided a taxable payment of $2,000 per month starting mid March ended on September 26, 2020, although late applications can be filed for the last 4-week period. The CERB is replaced with the programs below:
a. Employment Insurance (EI): with enhanced benefits for 1 year from September 27, 2020:
- Reduction of hours needed to qualify EI to 120 insured hours in the last 52 weeks.
- Minimum pre-tax EI benefit of $500 per week or $300 per week for extended parental benefits.The 52-week period to accumulate insured hours will be extended if you were claiming the CERB.
- This benefit is obtained through Service Canada
b. Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB): available online October 12, 2020
- For those not eligible for EI, applications can be made through the CRA My Account portal for the CRB.
- The CRB will pay $1,000 every 2 weeks ($900 after taxes) for a maximum of 26 weeks.
- Eligibility to the CRB are for those not working for reasons relating to COVID-19 or have had a 50% reduction in average weekly income compared to the previous year due to COVID-19 and meet the following requirements, namely:
- You reside in Canada with a valid social insurance number
- You did not apply for or receive the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (see below), the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (see below), short term disability benefits, workmen’s’ compensation benefits, EI and Quebec parental leave benefits.
- You are 15 years old or more when you apply
- You have not quit your job or reduced your hours voluntarily on or after September 27, 2020
- You are seeking work either as an employee or in self-employment during the period.
- You did not turn down reasonable work during the 2-week period being applied for the CRB.
- You earned a minimum of $5,000 income in the last 12 months, in 2019 or in 2020 from one or more of the following sources:
- employment income
- Net self-employment income
- provincial or federal benefits related to maternity or paternity leave
c. Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB)
- Applications for the CRCB were available online as of the week of October 4 for the first week period starting September 27, 2020, through the CRA My account portal.
- The program is available for a total of 26 weeks during the 1-year period ending September 25, 2021. Applications apply for 1 week at a time.
- The CRCB payment is $500 per week ($450 after taxes withheld).
- The CRCB is available if you are unable to work at least 50% of your scheduled work week since you are caring for a family member, or
- You are caring at home for a child under 12 years old and the school, or daycare facility is closed or unavailable due to COVID-19, or
- You are caring at home for a family member who needs supervised care and the care facility is closed or unavailable due to COVID-19, and the person is sick with COVID-19, self-isolating due to COVID-19 or at risk of serious health complications if they get COVID-19.
- You did not apply or receive the CRB, the Canada Recovery sickness Benefit, short term disability benefits, workmen’s’ compensation benefits, EI or the Quebec Parental leave benefit.
- You reside in Canada with a valid SIN and are at least 15 years old and meet the income test described above for the CRB.
- You are the only one in the household making the claim and are not receiving paid leave from your employer
d. Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB)
- Applications for the CRSB were available online as of the week of October 4 for the first week period starting September 27, 2020 through the CRA My Account portal.
- The program is available for a total of 2 weeks during the 1-year period ending September 25, 2021.
- The CRSB provides a benefit of $500 per week for a maximum of 2 weeks.
- You are eligible for the CRSB if you are not eligible to work for at least 50% of your scheduled work week because you are self-isolating since you are sick with COVID-19, were advised to self-isolate or have underlying health condition that puts you at greater risk.
- Many of the other requirements applicable to the CRCB apply here as well.