Employee Financial Support During COVID-19

The government has defined a little more on what measures they will be taking to help out Canadians who are in need.  Here are some of the options that they have provides:

  • Major Banks:
    • Banks have agreed to work with Canadians and small businesses on a case-by-case basis to provide them assistance and help throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. What this means is that they may be able to provide you with some help with mortgage payments and loans.  This could include up to a six-month deferral for mortgages.
    • What you need to do: You will need to contact your bank to find out what they can do for you.
    • What you need to know: It looks like they are deferring payments for now but are still charging interest which will essentially mean you are paying interest upon interest. It may not be an ideal situation for most people as it could have more negative consequences later on.
  • The Canadian/ U.S. Border:
    • Both the Canadian and U.S. Border has now been closed to all non-essential travel. What/ who will be able to cross the border at this time is any food, trade or transport items and products, and people that need to cross the border for essential travel or work.
  • EI Emergency Care Benefit- for those that do not qualify for EI:
    • This benefit will cover up to 15 weeks and paid out on a bi-weekly basis and will be comparable to EI
    • The notice period has been waved and they are not looking for doctors’ notes.
    • This will cover the following people:
      • People who are ill
      • People who are in quarantine or self-isolation
      • People who have to look after someone with COVID-19 or in quarantine
      • Those that have lost their jobs due to shortages of work and closures.
    • Can apply for this starting in April
  • EI Sick Leave/ EI Benefits- for those that are covered by EI:
    • This would follow the current sick leave practice.  The notice period has been waved and they are not looking for doctors’ notes.
    • This will cover the following people:
      • People who are ill
      • People who are in quarantine or self-isolation
      • People who have to look after someone with COVID-19 or in quarantine
      • Those that have lost their jobs due to shortages of work and closures.
    • Can apply for this through:

EI- Sickness Benefits- https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/ei-sickness/apply.html

EI Regular Benefits- https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/ei-regular-benefit/apply.html

  • Tax Returns:
    • If you have submitted your tax returns and found that you owe money, all payments will be deferred until August 2020. What this means is that you will not have to ay any owed taxes until August 2020.
  • Canada Child Benefit:
    • In the coming months there will be a boost to the childcare benefit.
  • Low Income Canadians:
    • There will be a boost to the GST credit. Canadians may see up to $300 plus $150 per child if they qualify for the GST credit.
  • Student Loans:
    • For those that have current student loan payments, they will be deferred for six months interest free.

As this pandemic continues to progress, there will be more information provided. If you have any questions or concerns, or are looking for more information, please use the following resources:

www.ontario.ca/coronavirus

www.canada.ca/coronavirus.

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