Resources for Businesses
The Government of Canada and Provincial Government is taking immediate, significant and decisive action to help Canadian Businesses facing hardship as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.
Employer Assessment Tool:
The Employer Assessment tool has proved to be a popular resource for businesses looking to find out if they are complying with the Public Health order. All positive cases of COVID-19 are reported to Public Health through the lab testing processes. Anyone with a confirmed case of COVID-19 will be contacted by Public Health and they will work to determine who their close contacts are. If co-workers are identified as close contacts, Public Health will follow up with those individuals, typically within 24 hours, with instructions to self isolate. All other employees should continue to practice good hand hygiene and use cough and sneeze etiquette. Physical distance of 2 metres, or six feet, must be maintained in the workplace.
There is no requirement for businesses to close if an employee has tested positive.
Businesses that are open must take the following steps to keep employees and customers healthy:
- Maintain a two-metre, or six-foot, distance among employees and customers
- Clean and disinfect workplaces a minimum of twice a day, or as required
- Employees must follow proper hand-washing and other hygiene guidelines
For more information please see: Employer Assessment Tool
Extending the Work-Sharing Program:
The Government is extending the maximum duration of the Work-Sharing program from 38 weeks to 76 weeks. The Work-Sharing program is offered to workers who agree to reduce their normal working hours because of developments beyond the control of their employers.
For more information please visit: Work-Sharing Program
Small Business Wage Subsidies:
The Governement is proposing a new Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) to support employers that are hardest hit by the pandemic, and protect the jobs Canadians depend on.
The subsidy would cover 75 per cent 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 per cent in March, and 30 per cent in April and May. The program would be in place for a 12-week period, from March 15 to June 6, 2020.
The Government is also proposing that employers eligible for the CEWS be entitled to receive a 100-per-cent refund for certain employer contributions to Employment Insurance, the Canada Pension Plan, the Quebec Pension Plan, and the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan paid in respect of employees who are on leave with pay.
For more information please visit: Small Business Wage Subsidies
Business Credit Availability Program:
The Goverment has established a Business Credit Availability Program (BCAP) to provide $65 billion of additional support through the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) and Export Development Canada (EDC). BDC and EDC are working with private sector lenders to coordinate on credit solutions for individual businesses, including in sectors such as oil and gas, air transportation, exportation and tourism.
This program includes:
Canada Emergency Business Account
Loan Guarantee for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises
Co-Lending Program for Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises
These programs will roll out in the three weeks after March 27, and interested businesses should work with their current financial institutions.
For more information please visit: Business Credit Availability Program
Increasing Credit Available For Farmers:
The Government is supporting Farm Credit Canada by allowing an additional $5 billion in lending capacity to producers, agribusinesses, and food processors. This will offer increased flexibility to farmers who face cashflow issues and to processors who are impacted by lost sales, helping them remain financially strong during this difficult time.
For more information please visit: Credit for Farmers
More Time to Pay Income Taxes:
The Government is allowing all businesses to defer, until after August 31, 2020, the payment of any income tax amounts that become owing on or after March 18 and before September 2020. This relief would apply to tax balances due, as well as installments, under Part I of the Income Tax Act. No interest or penalties will accumulate on these amounts during this period.
For more information please visit: Income Tax
Deferral of Sales Tax Remittance and Customs Duty Payments:
The Government is allowing businesses, including self-employed individuals, to defer until June 30, 2020 payments of the Goods and Services Tax / Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST), as well as customs duties owing on their imports.The deferral will apply to GST/HST remittances for the February, March and April 2020 reporting periods for monthly filers; the January 1, 2020 through March 31, 2020 reporting period for quarterly filers; and for annual filers, the amounts collected and owing for their previous fiscal year and instalments of GST/HST in respect of the filer’s current fiscal year. For GST and customs duty payments for imported goods, deferral will include amounts owing for March, April and May. These amounts were normally due to be submitted to the Canada Revenue Agency and the Canada Border Services Agency as early as the end of this month.
For more information please visit: Sales Tax Remittance and Customs Duty Payments
Canada Emergency Business Account:
The new Canada Emergency Business Account will provide interest-free loans of up to $40,000 to small businesses and not-for-profits, to help cover their operating costs during a period where their revenues have been temporarily reduced.To qualify, these organizations will need to demonstrate they paid between $50,000 to $1 million in total payroll in 2019.This program will roll out in mid-April, and interested businesses should work with their current financial institutions.
For more informatio please visit: Canada Emergency Business Account