Canada Emergency Response Benefit


Update (as of  June 16, 2020):  The Federal Government has announced that it will be extending the CERB for another 8 weeks for a total of 24 weeks.  

What is the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)?
The CERB is a taxable benefit that will provide $2000 a month for up to 6 months (updated June 16, 2020)  for workers who lose their income because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The CERB is a combination of the previously announced Emergency Care Benefit and the Emergency Support Benefit.

Who are eligible to receive the CERB?
• Workers who must stop working due to COVID19 and do not have access to paid leave or other income support.
• Workers who are sick, quarantined, or taking care of someone who is sick with COVID-19.
• Working parents who must stay home without pay to care for children that are sick or need additional care because of school and daycare closures.
• Workers who still have their employment but are not being paid because there is currently not sufficient work and their employer has asked them not to come to work.
• Wage earners and self-employed individuals, including contract workers, who would not otherwise be eligible for Employment Insurance.

How can you apply for CERB?
The secure web portal for accessing the CERB will be available starting April 6. Applicants can also apply via an automated telephone line or via a toll-free number. EI eligible Canadians who have lost their jobs can continue to apply for EI here: Apply for EI

Can Canadians who are already receiving EI regular and sickness benefits apply for the CERB?
Canadians who are already receiving EI regular and sickness benefits will continue to receive their benefits and should not apply to the CERB. If their EI benefits end before October 3, 2020, they can apply once their EI benefits cease if they are unable to go back to work due to COVID-19.

Canadians who have already applied for EI and whose applications have not been processed yet would not need to re-apply.

Canadians who are eligible for EI regular and sickness benefits will still be able to access their normal EI benefits, if still unemployed after the 16 week period covered by the CERB.

When can you expect to receive your CERB payments?
Canadians will begin to receive their CERB payments within 10 days of application. The CERB would be paid every 4 weeks and be available from March 15, 2020 to October 3, 2020.

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