How to Apply for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit

Allan Madan, CA
 Apr 20, 2020

This video is about the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.
I hope that you and your family are safe during this difficult time. I will be releasing a series of videos to help you receive financial aid from the Government of Canada due to COVID-19.

What is the Canada Emergency Response Benefit

The Canada Emergency Response Benefit is an income subsidy of $2,000 per month for Canadians who have stopped working or are staying at home due to COVID-19. The benefit will be paid each month for a 4 month period, starting mid-March 2020.

Eligibility Criteria

First, you must determine your eligibility. You are eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit if you are:

  1. A resident of Canada (i.e. living in Canada and subject to Canadian tax)
  2. At least 15 years of age
  3. Earned at least $5,000 from employment or self-employment during the 12 month period prior to applying or in 2019. This includes ineligible dividends received from an incorporated business.
  4. Stopped working because of illness or job loss for 14 consecutive days
  5. Without Income for those 14 consecutive days

Stopped Working for 14 Consecutive Days

Without Income for 14 Consecutive Days

To increase the number of Canadians that can qualify, the Government of Canada is proposing to allow Canadians to work 10 hours per week or less and still collect the Canada Emergency Response Benefit providing all of the other above conditions are met.


Let’s look at a couple of examples.

Example 1 – Sole Proprietor – John
John is a self employed real estate agent. Since March 15, John did not receive any commission income and he stopped working due to COVID-19 for 14 consecutive days. However, John had a great month in February and received $10,000 of commission income in February. In this case, John will qualify for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.

Example 2 – Incorporated IT Consultant – Kumar
Kumar is an Incorporated IT professional. He lost his client contracts due to COVID 19 and stopped working on March 15 and he has been without income ever since. In the months of January and February 2020, Kumar received $8,000 of ineligible dividends from his corporation. In this case, Kumar will qualify for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.

Stopped Working and No Income for 14 Consecutive Days

How to Apply for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit

It’s very easy to apply for the Canada Emergency Response benefit and it only takes a few minutes to apply online. See this link to apply

In order to apply online, you must have CRA My Account setup with the Canada Revenue Agency. If you do not, setup your Account first by visiting this link or by calling the CRA at 1-800-959-8281.

If you have not already updated your direct deposit account details with the CRA, I recommend you do so for faster processing of your benefit payments. You can update your bank account information on CRA My Account.

For more information and updates, click HERE


The information provided on this page is intended to provide general information. The information does not take into account your personal situation and is not intended to be used without consultation from accounting and financial professionals. Allan Madan and Madan Chartered Accountant will not be held liable for any problems that arise from the usage of the information provided on this page.

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