Did you receive CERB payments since the COVID-19 pandemic?

The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) program was implemented in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The relief was a measure to assist Canadians financially impacted by loss of work through the pandemic. 

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has reported that there has been some inadvertent double dipping by Canadians where individuals were able to apply for the CERB benefit twice. The government is now looking to get that money back!

How would this have happened?

Canadians who became eligible for EI claims effective March 15, 2020 or after, were automatically transferred for the CERB benefit. Consequently, this led some Canadians to apply for financial support both via CRA and Service Canada websites.

How will you know if you applied for both?

As the Canada Revenue Agency shares all information with Service Canada, they will be able to tell which Canadians benefited from both programs.

Canadians who have benefited from both the CERB benefit and EI will receive a letter informing them how much they are required to pay back. For those individuals who have received the letter, but already repaid, you can simply disregard the letter. 

If you receive a letter, and have not yet paid, you will need to do so by December 31st, 2020. While there won’t be penalties for Canadians who have received multiple CERB payments in error, the expectation is that one of the payments is either returned to the Canada Revenue Agency, or paid back in full. 

In the event that you have the original Canada Emergency Response benefit cheque, you can simply return the cheque by mail. Chances are that you received the payment by direct deposit, or you have already deposited the cheque. If this is the case, you mail your repayment cheque to the Canada Revenue Agency. For more information on how you can make a repayment visit the official CRA website here. 

LoanConnect can help

If you need assistance with repayment and will be unable to make the December 31st deadline, you may want to consider a personal loan. Search Canada’s lenders and find loan options and monthly repayments that work for you, regardless of your credit score.