COVID-19 Financial Assistance

If you have Employees:

  • If your employees are under quarantine or caring for others (such as parents having to stay home with children now that school is closed) they can apply for EI immediately under the sickness benefits. This benefit used to have a 1 week waiting period which is now waived. In order for staff to qualify for this, they will need a Record of Employment. Contact your bookkeeper directly if you need help getting ROEs to your employees.
    • (refer to Temporary Income Support for Workers and Parents)
  • If your business has suffered and you can’t keep your workers employed you can lay them off but I’d recommend using the sickness EI provision to do so wherever possible. There is no requirement for a business to provide paid sick leave in AB unless you have a policy in your business that says otherwise. From my understanding, if you call this staff reduction a layoff, then the regular EI wait time will exist. If, instead, the employees are viewed as self isolating they will not have the EI wait time. There is no need for any documentation of illness to support the claim of self isolation so anyone can access this as long as they have the Record of Employment.
    • (refer to Temporary Income Support for Workers and Parents)
  • If your employees are still working you should get a government subsidy for part of the cost of the employees. The subsidy is 10% of your payroll for each pay period for up to 3 months. The maximum subsidy is $25,000/business or $1,375 per employee. To access this, you just compete your payroll calculations and then subtract the 10% subsidy from the amount that you would otherwise remit to the government. Example: Assume total payroll for the period is $10,000 and total remittances owing are $3,000. Your subsidy is 10% of $10,000 or $1,000. You would then only remit $2,000 ($3,000 – $1,000 subsidy). Start this immediately for the current pay period.
    • (refer to Helping Business Keep Their Workers)
  • If you are keeping employees working with reduced hours, they should apply for EI Work Share Benefit. This will allow them to qualify for an EI top up on their part time wages.
    • (refer to Longer Term Support for Workers)


If you can’t Work Yourself:

  • Apply for the new special EI benefits that are being made available to self employed individuals. This program isn’t in effect yet but they anticipate it being available in April. You will receive $900/week flat rate EI for up to 15 weeks. You will need a personal ‘My Account’ to facilitate this so sign up for My Account with the CRA ASAP to be ready when this benefit becomes available.
    • (refer to Temporary Income Support for Workers and Parents)


If you receive the personal GST Credit: (please note, this is not in reference to corporate GST, this is a personal tax credit):

  • Your annual GST credit payment that will be deposited to your bank account will double. This will be an extra $400-600. This payment will be deposited in your bank account in May. You don’t need to apply for it.
    • (refer to Income Support for Individuals who Need it the Most)


If you receive Child Tax Benefit:

  • You will receive a one time payment of an additional $300 per child. This payment will be deposited in your bank account in May. You don’t need to apply for it.
    • (refer to Income Support for Individuals who Need it the Most)


If you’re Retired:

  • Your required RRIF withdrawal is reduced. This means you don’t have to take as much out of your RRIF right now. Obviously you might still require the regular RRIF withdrawal to pay your bills but this saves you from having to cash in some investments during such a volatile market. Contact you investment advisor or bank for more information on this.
    • (refer to Income Support for Individuals who Need it the Most)


If you have Canada Student Loans that are in repayment currently:

  • These loans will be interest free and payment free for 6 months.
    • (refer to Income Support for Individuals who Need it the Most)


If you own Rental Properties:


If you haven’t filed your Personal Taxes Yet:

  • The deadline to file personal tax has been extended to June 1, 2020. Please don’t wait to get your information to us, though. We’d really like to get all of the taxes filed as soon as possible.


If you Owe Taxes:

  • Personal tax payments that were previously due in April are now not due until September 1, 2020 at the earliest. This includes installments. At this time I’d strongly recommend that you DO NOT pay your taxes or installments. Hold onto that money in case you need it to run your business. No interest will accrue on this outstanding balance so don’t give the money to the CRA early.
    • (refer to Flexibility for Taxpayers)
  • Corporate tax payments for corporations that have a December 31, 2019 year end or later do not need to pay taxes owing until September 1, 2020. As with personal taxes owing, I’d recommend not paying your corporate tax right now and preserving that capital to sustain your company and your business. Please note that taxes owing for businesses with fiscal year ends prior to December 2019 still have to pay their taxes on time.
    • (refer to Flexibility for Businesses Filing Taxes)


If you need a Loan to Keep Going:

  • Contact your bank to see what can be arranged. The Business Development Bank of Canada is supposed to be working in concert with other financial institutions to provide bridge financing.
  • If you require financial statements for the loan application please contact your bookkeeper and we’ll get you those documents asap.
  • If you’re working with a banker to secure financing, please let them know that they can contact me directly via email to get any information they require. We’ll make sure we reply to any banking requests as soon as possible.