On Wednesday, April 22, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) announced further details of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS).

The subsidy generally covers 75% of an employee’s wages – up to $847 per week – for employers of all sizes and across all sectors who have suffered a drop in gross revenues of at least 15% in March, and 30% in April and May. During our twice weekly webinars we have discussed this program and some of you will be familiar with some of these details. They are

  1. Ensure you have a “My Business Account” setup with CRA. (This is the link if you have not completed this step »).
  2. Ensure your direct deposit information is provided to CRA.
  3. Determine if your sales have declined by at least 15% in March or 30% in April or May.
  4. Determine the average weekly (bi-weekly) earnings for your employees from January 1st, 2020 to March 15th, 2020.

CRA has now provided a spreadsheet that will help business owners calculate their subsidy amount. Unfortunately, the rules and calculation are complex and detailed. We encourage you to complete this spreadsheet as soon as possible for two reasons.

  1. So that you can work the accurate subsidy amount into your current cashflow projection;
  2. So that you have time to get help if you have problems. Here is the link to Tony’s calendar ».

The application system will be open on Monday, April 27th at 6:00 am through your CRA My Business Account. All applications received up to and including May 3rd will be batch-processed on May 4th. With funding expected to those with direct deposit on May 6th or 7th.

CRA has built in automated controls to guard against fraud and there may be some verification of information need on a randomized basis. CRA has re-assigned 3,000 auditors to handle this program.

We encourage you to complete your calculation and application as quickly as possible. This program is meant to keep people employed and have business re-hire those that have been laid-off. Those employees that are re-hired and you claim the wage subsidy for will be required to re-pay a portion of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) that they have received during the period.

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