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Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB)

Who can apply

If you are able to work, you must be actively looking for work to be eligible to receive the CESB. If you still cannot find work due to COVID-19, you can re-apply for each CESB eligibility period that you are eligible for.

You cannot apply for the CESB if you already applied for the CERB or EI

If you have already applied, or are receiving support from the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) or Employment Insurance (EI) you are not eligible to apply for the CESB.

Eligibility criteria

Check these boxes to see if you are eligible for the CESB:

    • Who is considered a protected person

      An individual who is recognized by the Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (IRB) and Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) as a person in need of protection.

    • Recognized post-secondary educational institutions

      Courses taken at a university or college level, or secondary level vocational training in Quebec:

    • Who is considered "unable to work" due to COVID-19

      Students who may be:

      • self-isolating or in quarantine
      • ill or have underlying health conditions
      • caring for others who are ill or vulnerable to COVID-19
      • caring for dependants while schools or daycares are closed
      • studying abroad and waiting to be repatriated by the Canadian Embassy, or only allowed to work on campus, but cannot find work
      • Final eligibility period: August 2 to August 29, 2020

Eligibility criteria for the benefit top-up

If you meet all of the conditions above, you may also be eligible for an extra $750 (total benefit amount of $2,000) for each 4-week period.

    • What is considered a disability

      Any impairment, including a physical, mental, intellectual, cognitive, learning, communication or sensory impairment — or a functional limitation — whether permanent or episodic in nature, or evident or not, that, in interaction with a barrier, hinders a person’s full and equal participation in society.

    • Who can be claimed as a dependant
      • A child (adopted child, stepchild, or foster child) who is under 12 years old and is completely dependent on the student, student’s spouse, or common-law partner for support, care, and upbringing
      • A person with a disability who is completely dependent on the student, student’s spouse, or common-law partner for support, care, and upbringing

Verifying your eligibility

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will verify your eligibility to receive the CESB after you have applied. You may receive a notice from the CRA asking you to contact the CRA to validate your application. This is needed to verify your information and process your application.

In cases where claimants have received a payment and are later found to be ineligible, they will be contacted to make arrangements to repay any applicable amounts. Canadians can also report suspected CESB misuse through the CRA’s Leads program.

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