Corporate & Commercial
Canada emergency wage subsidy for businesses, non-profits and charities.
The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (“CEWS”), implemented by the federal government to provide financial assistance to qualifying Canadian employers impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, has recently been extended to cover claim periods ending December 19, 2020. Employers may be eligible to receive a subsidy of up to 65 percent of eligible remuneration to help cover part of their employees’ salaries and wages.
Until the recent changes, only employers who experienced at least a specified minimum decrease in revenue were eligible for CEWS. Now, for claims that cover periods from July 5, 2020, and later, there is no minimum revenue drop required to qualify for the subsidy, but the rate an employer’s revenue has dropped is used to calculate how much of a subsidy may be available for these periods.
In this regard, employers may only claim CEWS on “eligible remuneration” paid to an “eligible employee”. Eligible remuneration includes amounts such as salary, wages, fees and commissions, but does not include severance pay and tips given by customers directly to the employee. An eligible employee means an individual who is physically present in Canada to work more than 50 percent of the time throughout the claim period.
The deadline to apply is January 31, 2021, or 180 days after the end of the claim period, whichever date is later.
To find more information as to whether you are eligible and to apply for CEWS, please contact your accountant and/or visit the Canada Revenue Agency’s (“CRA”) website for CEWS.
If you have questions or need legal assistance with CEWS, please contact one of the lawyers in our business law department.