CERB Application starts today

At 6:00 a.m. EDT, CRA’s My Account began accepting applications for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). The CERB provides a payment of $2,000 for a 4-week period for up to 16 weeks.  Payments will be processed in 3 business days if registered for direct deposit.

When can I apply?

CRA is asking that only people born in certain months apply on certain days.

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As an alternative to My Account, individuals can call 1-800-959-2019 or 1-800-959-2041.  They will need to provide their SIN, their postal code, the period that they are applying for, and attest that they qualify.

Eligibility Periods

Eligibility periods are fixed in 4-week periods.  Individuals may receive benefits for up to 4 of the 7 periods.

The 4-week periods are:

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Certification

Applicants must certify:

  • I reside in Canada.
  • I am 15 years of age or older at the time of application.
  • For my first CERB application: I have stopped or will stop working due to reasons related to COVID-19 and, for at least 14 consecutive days of the four week period for which I am applying, I will not be receiving:
    • employment income;
    • self-employment income; or
    • provincial or federal benefits related to maternity or paternity leave.
  • For my subsequent CERB applications: I continue to not be working due to reasons related to COVID-19 and, for the four week period for which I am applying, I will not be receiving:
    • employment income;
    • self-employment income; or provincial or federal benefits related to maternity or paternity leave.
  • I have not quit my job voluntarily.
  • I have not applied for, nor am I receiving, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) or Employment Insurance (EI) benefits from Service Canada for the same eligibility period.
  • I have earned a minimum of $5,000 income within the last 12 months or in 2019 from one or more of the following sources:
    • employment income;
    • self-employment income; or
    • provincial or federal benefits related to maternity or paternity leave.

 
Special note: Individuals in receipt of non-eligible dividends (generally, those paid out of corporate income taxed at the small business rate) are eligible for CERB.

An individual could count this income towards the $5,000 income requirement to be eligible for CERB.

For a CRA FAQ on CERB, click here.

For more details on the application process, click here.

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