Canadians who have lost their income due to COVID-19 can now apply for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).
According to a government news release, “Canadians can expect their payment in three to five business days from when they apply if they are using direct deposit.”
If no direct deposit is set up, payments will be mailed, which will arrive within 10 business days.
That means most Canadians who are eligible and apply today will receive $2,000 before the end of next week. The CERB will support Canadians who have stopped working because of COVID-19 by providing $500 a week for up to 16 weeks in total.
“The Government of Canada is fully committed to ensuring Canadian families have the support they need through these difficult times,” Ahmed Hussen, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development said. “Our priority is to ensure that Canadians receive the money they need as quickly as possible.”
Canadians who have already applied for Employment Insurance (EI) do not need to reapply.
According to the government, through the new CERB program, over 1.2 million of the EI applications received since March 15 have been processed.
To help manage the volume of applications through the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Service Canada, the government is asking applicants to apply over four days depending on their month of birth.
“Our top priority is to get funds into the hands of Canadians quickly and efficiently. Thousands of CRA employees across the country have been reassigned to bolster our call centre capacity and our systems have been tested in anticipation of the expected record volumes starting April 6,” Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue said. “Canadians can count on the CRA to deliver these critical benefit payments during this unprecedented and challenging time.”
To apply for CERB online visit Canada.ca/coronavirus.
Canadians looking to get more information about the CERB or, who are unable to apply online, can call the toll-free telephone line at 1-833-966-2099.