COVID 19: Receiving the CERB or other benefits – What you need to know about cashing your cheque

May 12, 2020

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, many Canadians are receiving the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) or other government benefits to help support them during these difficult times. The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada (FCAC) is encouraging people to sign up for direct deposit for their government benefits. Direct deposit is fast, convenient and secure. That means someone can get their money right away with no delays or holds. Anyone can sign up for direct deposit through the CERB application or through online banking.

If someone cannot easily sign up for direct deposit and they are receiving their Government of Canada benefits by cheque, they should take their cheque to a bank.

Did you know: Anyone has the right to cash a Government of Canada cheque for free, at any bank with acceptable identification, even if they are not a client at that bank. Banks will cash CERB or Canada Emergency Student Benefit cheques up to $2,000 for anyone without any holds.

Payday loan companies and cheque-cashing services should be the last resort.

Did you know: Payday loan companies and cheque-cashing services charge a fee for cashing cheques. This is usually a percentage of the cheque, plus a flat fee. That means losing out on all-important money. For example, to cash a $2,000 CERB cheque, a payday loan company could charge about $63. 

FCAC is committed to protecting financial consumers during this difficult period. We offer information to help Canadians manage their finances through challenging times.

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