Canada Emergency Response Benefit
What is the Canada Emergency Response Benefit?
The CERB supports Canadians by providing urgently needed financial support to employed and self-employed Canadians who have been directly affected by COVID-19. It provides a payment of $2,000 for a 4-week period (equivalent to $500 a week) for up to 16 weeks.
How to apply?
Applications for the CERB will begin the week of Monday, April 6, 2020.
Prior to April 6, individuals who are without work and are eligible for EI can continue to apply for Employment Insurance. If you are not eligible for Employment Insurance, find out how you can get ready to apply for the CERB through the Canada Revenue Agency.
Who can apply?
The CERB will be available to workers:
- residing in Canada, who are at least 15 years old;
- who have stopped working because of COVID-19 or are eligible for Employment Insurance regular or sickness benefits;
- who had income of at least $5,000 in 2019 or in the 12 months prior to the date of their application; and
- who are or expect to be without employment or self-employment income for at least 14 consecutive days in the initial four-week period.
The Benefit is only available to individuals who stopped work and are not earning employment or self-employment income as a result of reasons related to COVID-19. If you have not stopped working because of COVID-19, you are not eligible for the Benefit.
Get ready now!
1 - There are two ways to apply:
- Online with CRA My Account
Do you have a CRA My Account? Open one now here.
- Over the phone with an automated phone service at 1-800-959-2019.
Is your direct deposit and mailing information up to date with the CRA? You will need your social insurance number (SIN).
2 - Determine the best day of the week to apply once the system is available
Whether you apply online or by phone, we want to provide the best service possible to everyone. To help manage this, we have set up specific days for you to apply. Please use the following guidelines:
Here are the days to apply based on your birth month:
- January, February or March: Mondays
- Your best day to apply: April 6
- April, May or June: Tuesdays
- Your best day to apply: April 7
- July, August or September: Wednesdays
- Your best day to apply: April 8
- October, November or December: Thursdays
- Your best day to apply: April 9
- Any month: Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
What are the payment methods?
The CERB is paid by direct deposit or by cheque if your direct deposit information is not on file.
When to expect payment?
- If you are getting your payment by direct deposit, expect your payment within 3 business days from the day you submitted your application
- If you are getting your payment by cheque, expect to get the cheque within 10 business days from the day you submitted your application.
Apply again every 4 weeks
You will need to apply and confirm your eligibility for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit every 4 weeks (to a maximum of 16 weeks) if your situation continues. Each payment of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) covers a 4-week period, beginning March 15, 2020.
For more information on the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, click here.