Important Information on Covid-19

Clients applying for CERB (Canadian Emergency Response Benefit) assistance

1) You will have to register with the CRA. We are not able to apply for CERB financial assistance on your behalf. You will need your most recently filed T1 return handy when registering. We recommend you begin this process now as it will take 5 to 10 business days for CRA to mail you your temporary password. https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/e-services/e-services-individuals/account-individuals.html

2) The portal to apply for assistance will be available in early April (April 6-7th). Once we are also able to access the application form we will better be able to assist you.

3) If you are presently unemployed, please be prepared with your 2018 or 2019 return (if filed) when applying in early April. CRA will be asking for a line from your return.

4) Below is the link with the most recent CRA updates for the Emergency Response benefit News. 25-Mar-20 
https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/03/introduces-canada-emergency-response-benefit-to-help-workers-and-businesses.html

5) Trudeau says anyone who has already been approved for EI benefits will be moved over to the new emergency benefit CERB when it becomes available.

Please Note

1) NEW filing deadlines for Individuals, Self-employed, Corporations, Trusts, NR  returns, Charities. https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/campaigns/covid-19-update/covid-19-filing-payment-dates.html

2) For those applying for small business help:
Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

3) Support for individuals and small business:
Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan: Support for Canadians and Businesses

4) CRA updates link: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/campaigns/covid-19-update.html

5) Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau said Wednesday that an emergency coronavirus wage subsidy for businesses could cost the government up to $71 billion. Under the wage subsidy program, the government will cover up to 75 per cent of wages for all businesses that have seen a decline in revenue of up to 30 per cent due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Morneau said the businesses would be expected to show that they’ve made every available effort to pay the remaining 25 per cent of their employees’ wages, but said the program would “be flexible” as he recognizes not every business will be able to meet this goal. Morneau said funding through the Canada wage subsidy program would be available in approximately six weeks

You May NOT apply for both CERB and the Wage Subsidy.

Ottawa 

The federal government is repackaging two previously promised benefits for Canadians whose working lives are disrupted by COVID-19. Instead, the Liberals say there will now be one benefit to provide $2,000 per month for four months to workers whose income drops to zero because of the pandemic, including if they have been furloughed by their employers but technically still have jobs.

Speaking in the Senate, Finance Minister Bill Morneau told senators that the move should help get money to affected workers faster than under the previously announced model. The House of Commons approved the stimulus package in the early hours of Wednesday and the Senate is expected to approve the bill by this afternoon. If approved, affected workers would have to fill out an online application and meet what Morneau says will be a few, limited conditions to qualify.

Trudeau said the new benefit should be in people’s pockets within 10 days of their applications — meaning the help won’t flow until the middle of April at the earliest

Service Canada Update

Service Canada is ready to support Canadians affected by COVID-19 and placed in quarantine, with the following support actions:

The one-week waiting period for EI sickness benefits will be waived for new claimants who are quarantined so they can be paid for the first week of their claim Establishing a new dedicated toll-free phone number to support enquiries related to waiving the EI sickness benefits waiting period People claiming EI sickness benefits due to quarantine will not have to provide a medical certificate People who cannot complete their claim for EI sickness benefits due to quarantine may apply later and have their EI claim backdated to cover the period of delay
Important: If you are directly affected by the COVID-19 because you are sick or quarantined and you have not yet applied for EI benefits, please submit your application before contacting us. This will allow us to better serve you and prevent delays in establishing your claim.

If you have already completed the application for EI sickness benefits whether you are sick or quarantined and would like to have the one-week waiting period waived, call the new toll-free phone number below. It is important to note that no other request will be actioned on this phone line. We will take action only for sick or quarantined clients affected by the COVID-19 for which the application for sickness benefits has been filed.

Telephone: 1-833-381-2725 (toll-free)
Teletypewriter (TTY): 1-800-529-3742

IRS Update

The Treasury Department and Internal Revenue Service announced today that the federal income tax filing due date is automatically extended from April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020.

Taxpayers can also defer federal income tax payments due on April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. This deferment applies to all taxpayers, including individuals, trusts and estates, corporations and other non-corporate tax filers as well as those who pay self-employment tax.

Taxpayers do not need to file any additional forms or call the IRS to qualify for this automatic federal tax filing and payment relief. Individual taxpayers who need additional time to file beyond the July 15 deadline, can request a filing extension by filing Form 4868 through their tax professional, tax software or using the Free File link on IRS.gov. Businesses who need additional time must file Form 7004.

The IRS urges taxpayers who are due a refund to file as soon as possible. Most tax refunds are still being issued within 21 days.

For full details, please see: https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/tax-day-now-july-15-treasury-irs-extend-filing-deadline-and-federal-tax-payments-regardless-of-amount-owed and https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus