COVID-19 Business Update June 26

We did it!! WE HAVE MADE IT HALFWAY THROUGH a very challenging year!!! While businesses begin to reopen we must remember that this isn’t over and we need to ensure that we continue to operate safely.

To support businesses during this time the government is offering the following:

Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) expanded eligibility criteria for businesses with less than $20K in payroll for 2019 EG sole proprietors:

  1. The expanded program is currently not yet open for applications.
  2. All applications will be processed through your financial institution for phase one; then a specific CEBA website for phase 2.
  3. You will be able to apply under two streams: Payroll stream or Non-Deferrable expenses stream
    1. Payroll Stream: you must have filed a T4 return in 2019 for a minimum of $20K in total employment income. If you didn’t file a T4 return, then you need to apply under the Non-Deferrable expenses stream
    2. NEW Non-Deferrable expenses stream: you will need to provide supporting documentation through the CEBA website (still currently under construction) that you have at least $40K of non-deferrable expenses for 2020. 
  4. What are eligible non-deferrable business expenses?
    1. Commercial rent
    2. Rent or lease of equipment you use in your business
    3. Insurance
    4. Payments to employees or subcontractors
    5. Utility expenses eg. BC Hydro/Fortis, telephone, internet
    6. Property taxes
    7. Regular debt repayments eg. an existing loan that you have that is paid for monthly
    8. Licensing fees and annual dues to professional associations
  5. How to prepare to apply for the Non-deferrable expense stream: 
    1. it sounds like you can apply for step 1 through your financial institution immediately and then wait for the CEBA website to open up. 
    2. Start gathering your supporting documents because you will need to upload it through the CEBA website. Start scanning docs now. Or start an electronic folder with all the docs that are in your email
    3. Contact your vendors to send you docs that you are missing eg. copies of lease agreements.
  6. Keep an eye on this website for more details as they are rolled out: https://ceba-cuec.ca/

CECRA Rental assistance subsidy: Here is a summary of some key points now that this program is up and running:

  1. Your landlord needs to apply through CMHC, but they don’t need to have a mortgage to qualify for the CECRA.
  2. The application is done only once for the periods April-June.
  3. The small business tenant needs to show a minimum revenue reduction of 70% as compared to the same months of 2019 (April-June). If the business was not open in 2019, then the comparison amount is the average of Jan and Feb 2020.
  4. The rent reduction by the landlord must be at least 75%, and this amount is not a deferral; it must be forgiveness of the rent. The tenant cannot be evicted during this time period.
  5. What documentation is required: 
    1. Signed attestations by both the landlord and small business tenant
    2. Rent Reduction Agreement
    3. Forgivable Loan Agreement
    4. Some basic info about the landlord and tenant.
    5. Note: no financials are required for the application
  6. Where to apply: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/finance-and-investing/covid19-cecra-small-business


Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) Extension: the subsidy has been extended to Aug 29. We are currently in period 4 which ends on July 4, and the eligibility criteria for this period have not changed. Any changes to the eligibility criteria will apply to periods 5 and 6. However, nothing has been announced yet. We will keep you posted as additional information becomes available.

Worksafe BC Premium deferral: premiums for quarters 1 and 2 have now been deferred to Sept 22. At this time the premiums for quarters 1, 2 and 3 will be due. Filings must still be completed on time. The quarter 2 filing is due on July 22.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you need help navigating these challenging times.

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