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Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)

How the subsidy is calculated

For all claim periods, the CEWS amount is based on:

For claim periods 5 and later, the subsidy is also determined by the rate of eligible revenue reduction you experienced.

There is no overall limit on the total subsidy amount that an eligible employer may claim.

Read more about how the subsidy is calculated

Calculation for claim periods 1 to 4

For each claim period, A-B-C+D, where:

A =

The total of all amounts—each of which is for an eligible employee in respect of a week in the claim period—equal to the greater of E or F, where:

E =

The least of the following:

F =

The least of the following:

B =
The total of all amounts claimed (or intended to be claimed) for the 10% Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers in the claim period
C =
The total of any work-sharing benefit amounts received by eligible employees during the claim period through ESDC's Work-Sharing program
D =

For an eligible employee for each whole week in the claim period that the employee was on leave with pay, the total of the employer contributions to:

  • Employment Insurance (EI)
  • Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP)
  • Canada Pension Plan (CPP)
  • Quebec Pension Plan (QPIP)
Calculation for claim periods 5 and 6

For each qualifying period, A-B+C, where:

A =
The total of all amounts—each of which is for an eligible employee in respect of a week in the qualifying period:
  • if the employee is active (not on leave with pay for that week), the greater of E or F, where
    • E = G, if the eligible employer’s revenue drop for the claim period is less than 30.00%, or, in any other case H, where
      • G = $0,
      • H = the greater of I or J, where
        • I = the least of the following: and
        • J = the least of the following:
          • the eligible remuneration paid to the employee in respect of that week
          • 75% of the pre-crisis remuneration of the employee determined for that week, or
          • $847
      and
    • F = the eligible employer’s overall CEWS rate for the period, multiplied by the least of: and
  • if the employee is on leave with pay (furloughed) for that week, K, if the eligible employer’s base revenue drop and its top-up rate for the period are both 0%, or in any other case L, where:
    • K = $0,
    • L = the greater of M or N, where
      • M = the least of the following:
        • 75% of the eligible remuneration paid to the employee in respect of that week
        • $847, or
        • $0 – if non-arm's-length employee
        and
      • N = the least of the following:
        • the eligible remuneration paid to the employee in respect of that week
        • 75% of the pre-crisis remuneration of the employee determined for that week; or
        • $847
B =
The total of any work-sharing benefit amounts received by eligible employees during the claim period through ESDC's Work-Sharing program
C =

For an eligible employee, for each whole week in the claim period that the employee was on leave with pay, the total of the employer contributions to:

  • Employment Insurance (EI)
  • Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP)
  • Canada Pension Plan (CPP)
  • Quebec Pension Plan (QPIP)
Calculation for claim periods 7 to 9

For each qualifying period, A-B+C, where:

A =
  • The total of all amounts—each of which is for an eligible employee in respect of a week in the qualifying period:
    • if the employee is active (not on leave with pay for that week), the amount determined by the eligible employer’s overall CEWS rate for the period, multiplied by the least of: or
    • if the employee is on leave with pay (furloughed) for that week:
      • for period 7, use the same rules as periods 5 and 6
      • for periods 8 and 9, use the least of the following:
B =
The total of any work-sharing benefit amounts received by eligible employees during the claim period through ESDC's Work-Sharing program
C = Either:
  • if the eligible employer’s base revenue drop or top-up rate are greater than 0%*, the total of the employer contributions to:
    • Employment Insurance (EI)
    • the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP)
    • the Canada Pension Plan (CPP), and
    • the Quebec Pension Plan (QPP)
    for an eligible employee, for each whole week in the claim period that the eligible employee was on leave with pay
    or
  • if the eligible employer’s base revenue drop and its top-up rate for the period are both 0%, this amount is $0.

The "safe harbour" rule

For periods 5 and 6 only, if you have an eligible revenue drop of at least 30% in the current or previous period, you are entitled to the higher CEWS rate between two calculations:

  • the rate calculated using the rules for the current period (period 5 or 6), or
  • the rate calculated using the rules that were in place for period 4

This means that in periods 5 and 6, if you had a revenue drop of 30% or more in the current or previous period, you would receive an overall CEWS rate of at least 75% and will not receive an amount less than what you would have under the old rules.

If you use the online calculator or spreadsheet to calculate your subsidy amount, the safe harbour rule is automatically applied if you qualify and it is to your benefit.

You cannot round your rate to reach the 30% needed to qualify for the safe harbour rule.

Read more about how the revenue drop and subsidy rate are calculated for a claim period.

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