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Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) with CRA

How to apply

Status: Ended

Retroactive applications

The CRA is continuing to accept and process retroactive applications until December 2, 2020.

You can apply for periods 5 to 7 through the CRA’s My Account or automated toll-free phone line at 1-800-959-2019 or 1-800-959-2041.

You can apply for periods 1 to 4 by speaking to one of our agents at 1-800-232-1966. Please note that you may be required to provide additional documentation to the CRA prior to your application being approved.

Find support after CERB

If you continue to need income support, find out if you are eligible for Employment Insurance or other Recovery benefits.

Transition to new COVID-19 benefits

On this page

Before you apply

Answer the following questions to ensure your application will be quick and easy:

Confirm you are correctly registered with the CRA

Have you ever filed a Canadian tax return?

  • Yes

    Do you have a CRA My Account?

    • Yes

      Are you able to successfully log in?

      • Yes
      • No - I am locked out
      • No - I can't remember my CRA user ID or password
    • No

      Do you have a My Service Canada Account?

      • Yes
      • No

        Have you filed an income tax return for either the 2018 or 2019 calendar years?

        • Yes
        • No
  • No

Set up direct deposit

Direct deposit payments take 5-7 business days. A cheque takes about 12-14 business days.

Is your direct deposit information up to date with the CRA?

  • Yes
  • No - I want to set it up
  • No - I prefer to receive my payment by cheque

Check impact on your social assistance benefits

Do you receive any provincial or territorial Social (Income or Disability) Assistance?

  • Yes
  • No

When to apply

Select the period you are eligible for to find out when you can apply. If you're not sure, review the eligibility period dates in a calendar.

Determine when to apply

Select your eligibility period

  • March 15 to April 11, 2020
  • April 12 to May 9, 2020
  • May 10 to June 6, 2020
  • June 7 to July 4, 2020
  • July 5 to August 1, 2020
  • August 2 to August 29, 2020
  • August 30 to September 26, 2020
Alternative format: When to apply
Eligibility periods and days to apply for the CERB
Period Start and end dates Earliest you can apply
1 March 15, 2020 to April 11, 2020 Monday April 6, 2020
2 April 12, 2020 to May 9, 2020 Monday April 13, 2020
3 May 10, 2020 to June 6, 2020 Monday May 11, 2020
4 June 7, 2020 to July 4, 2020 Monday June 8, 2020
5 July 5, 2020 to August 1, 2020 Monday July 6, 2020
6 August 2, 2020 to August 29, 2020 Monday August 3, 2020
7 August 30, 2020 to September 26, 2020 Monday August 31, 2020

Apply online or by phone

Due to routine system maintenance of CRA My Account, you will not be able to apply online on Sunday, November 1 from 1 am to 6 am ET.

The CERB has now ended. You can continue to apply retroactively, but the process is different depending on the period you are applying for.

Periods 1 to 4 (March 15 to July 4, 2020)

You can apply for periods 1 to 4 by calling 1-800-232-1966. You may be required to provide additional documentation to the CRA prior to your application being approved.

Periods 5 to 7 (July 5 to September 26, 2020)

You can apply for periods 5 to 7 through the CRA’s My Account or automated toll-free phone line.

Read the Privacy Statement

When you apply for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), your personal information is collected under the authority of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit Act which is being jointly administered by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) and the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

Your personal information will be used for the purpose of (i) administering your application, and could be used for (ii) issuing a payment to you, (iii) verifying that you meet the program's eligibility requirements, and to (iv) collect any overpayments or erroneous payments that may have been issued to you. Failure to provide information will affect your consideration for benefits.

Please note that to process your application we will need to access information in your tax file. Your information may be shared with ESDC for verification and reporting purposes.

Under the Privacy Act, you have a right of protection, access to and correction of your personal information and to file a complaint with the Privacy Commissioner of Canada regarding our handling of your information.

A personal information bank for this program is under development and will be available in Info Source.


Sign in to your CRA My Account
If you do not have a CRA My Account, register for one.

By phone:
Call the automated toll-free line
Before you call

To verify your identity, you'll need

  • your social insurance number (SIN)
  • postal code
Telephone number

Follow the instructions below before you call or

  1. Select your language preference: English or French
  2. Press '2' to apply for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB)
  3. Follow the prompts to enter your information, including:
    • your SIN
    • confirmation of your postal code
    • the period you are applying for
  4. Declare that you qualify for the benefit

The CRA will issue payments by direct deposit or cheque, based on the payment method we have on file for you.

Both of these services are available 21 hours a day, 7 days a week. Both services are closed from 3:00 am to 6:00 am (Eastern time) for maintenance.

The CERB is a taxable benefit

You will need to report any payments you received on next year's income tax return. A T4A tax slip will be made available for the 2020 tax year in CRA My Account under Tax Information Slips (T4 and more).

When to expect your payment

If you are eligible for the CERB, you can expect to get $2,000 ($500 per week) for the 4-week eligibility period you applied for.

Direct deposit

Direct deposit takes 5-7 business days if you have it set up with the CRA.

By mail

A mailed cheque should arrive in about 12-14 business days. However, in some cases it will take longer for payments to be issued.

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