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The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) provided financial support to employed and self-employed Canadians who were directly affected by COVID-19.

Applicants received $2,000 for a 4-week period (the same as $500 a week), between March 15 and September 26, 2020. The last day to apply was December 2, 2020.

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Eligibility criteria

To be eligible for the CERB payments, you must have met the following conditions:

    What counted towards the $1,000 in income you could have earned?

If you did not meet the above criteria, you were not eligible for the CERB. Find out how to repay the CERB.

If you met the above criteria, you were eligible for the CERB. You could have received $2,000 for each 4-week period that you qualified for.


Period dates for the benefit

Review CERB eligibility period dates in a calendar

  • Period 1 - March 15 to April 11 2020
  • Period 2 - April 12 to May 9, 2020
  • Period 3 - May 10 to June 6, 2020
  • Period 4 - June 7 to July 4, 2020
  • Period 5 - July 5 to August 1, 2020
  • Period 6 - August 2 to August 29, 2020
  • Period 7 - August 30 to September 26, 2020

Verifying your eligibility

The CRA will verify that you were eligible to receive the CERB. We may ask you to provide additional details to validate your application.

As part of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy, the CRA will also be comparing employers' payroll records with the information you provide. We will use this information to check if you became ineligible when you returned to work.

To report any suspected misuse: CRA's Leads program

If you need to repay

If you received any benefit payments that you were not eligible for, the CRA will contact you to make arrangements to repay.

For details: Repay COVID-19 benefits

Self-employment income (net vs. gross)

Self-employed individuals who applied for the CERB based on their gross self-employment income may be able to keep their payments. Those who have already repaid, may be able to get it reimbursed.

Find out if you meet the conditions for using gross self-employment income.

CERB debt reduction for students

If you were a student in 2020 and were asked to repay the CERB, you may be able to keep some or all of your payments.

Find out if you are eligible to apply for a credit towards your CERB debt.

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