To help employers keep and re-hire workers amidst the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government said today it is implementing the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS).
The economic measure provides a subsidy of 75% of an eligible employee’s weekly earnings, to a maximum of $847 per employee per week, to eligible employers, for up to 12 weeks. Retroactive to March 15 of this year, according to a release, the CEWS will prevent further job losses and encourage employers to re-hire workers previously laid off as a result of COVID-19.
The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is administering the CEWS on behalf of the government.
All claims that are approved through the CRA’s automated verification process will be sent for payment on May 5, so that payments being made through direct deposit should begin to appear in employers’ accounts as of May 7.
Some applications will require a secondary verification, done manually, and in these cases the CRA may contact employers to verify information. It is expected that these secondary verifications will take no more than 72 hours in the vast majority of cases.
“The CRA has again partnered with financial institutions to enroll Canadian employers for direct deposit, and employers can now register business payroll accounts for direct deposit with the CRA through their bank portals,” the release stated.
“Signing up for direct deposit will enable employers whose applications are approved to receive their CEWS payments quickly and securely. Employers can sign up for direct deposit with their financial institutions even after applying for the CEWS.”
Federal revenue minister Diane Lebouthillier said that “we are living in unprecedented times and CRA public servants have shown incredible dedication in delivering our government’s economic measures to see us through this crisis.
“We successfully delivered the Canada Emergency Response Benefit and are well-equipped to continue this important work for Canadian businesses. This $73 billion benefit will put Canadians back on the payroll and help our economy stabilize as we continue our fight against COVID-19 and look forward to our economic recovery from the crisis.”