COVID19 Resources – Personal & Business (Updated 06/30/2020)

General Information: (Updated 6/30/2020)

Most updated interactive guide to programs available:

https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html

-This encompasses Individual, Business & Industry General info on benefits with all relevant links for even more info! 

https://newsinteractives.cbc.ca/coronavirusbenefits/



General Links:

The unfortunate reality of today is a lot of people are losing shifts, being laid off, etc because of COVID-19. If you require financial assistance at this time, you can find information below on ways the Federal Government is trying to help you through these tough times.
Dedicated EI Phone Line: 1-833-381-2725

Government of Canada Website Resources:

  • COVID-19 updates
    Current cases, risk to Canadians, monitoring, news and updates
  • Prevention and risk
    Social distancing, self-isolation, hygiene, how COVID-19 spreads, infection risks, false claims
  • Symptoms and treatment
    Symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, about coronaviruses
  • Being prepared
    Planning, prescriptions, essentials, caring for those who are ill, communication
  • Travel advice
    Travel advisories, returning travellers, safety abroad
  • Canada’s response
    Economic and financial support, Government of Canada’s actions, Canadian collaboration

Personal Resources: 

Tax filing and payment deadlines for 2019: The deadline for individuals to file has been extended to June 1, 2020, and the deadline to pay any amounts owed has been extended to September 1, 2020. Note: some taxpayers may have received a Notice of Assessment that says the deadline for payment is April 30, 2020, which is incorrect.

Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB): 

CERB Application Link: Program is currently live!! Click the link below to grab the schedule for applications:

https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/cerb-application.html

More info here:

Canada Emergency Response Benefit – OPENED Week of April 6th, 2020:
 
The CERB will cover Canadians who have lost their job, are sick, quarantined, or taking care of someone who is sick with COVID-19, as well as working parents who must stay home without pay to care for children who are sick or at home because of school and daycare closures. The CERB would apply to wage earners, as well as contract workers and self-employed individuals who would not otherwise be eligible for Employment Insurance (EI).
 
Additionally, workers who are still employed, but are not receiving income because of disruptions to their work situation due to COVID-19, would also qualify for the CERB. This would help businesses keep their employees as they navigate these difficult times, while ensuring they preserve the ability to quickly resume operations as soon as it becomes possible.
 

Changes to existing benefits, credits or support

Goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) credit payment amounts

The Government will provide a one-time special payment on April 9, 2020. This payment will double the maximum annual GST/HST credit payment amounts for the 2019-20 benefit year.

You will get the extra payment amount automatically if you normally receive the GST/HST credit and have filed a 2018 tax return.

The average boost to income for those benefitting from this measure will be close to $400 for single individuals and close to $600 for couples. This measure will inject $5.5 billion into the economy.

Learn more: FAQs – Increase to the GST/HST credit amount: CRA and COVID-19

Canada Child Benefit (CCB) payment amounts

The Government increased the maximum annual CCB payment amounts, only for the 2019-20 benefit year, by $300 per child.

The overall increase for families receiving CCB will be approximately $550 on average; these families will receive an extra $300 per child as part of their May payment. In total, this measure will deliver almost $2 billion in extra support.

Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) minimum withdrawal

The minimum withdrawals requirement from RRIFs will be reduced by 25% for 2020, in recognition of volatile market conditions and their impact on many seniors’ retirement savings.

This will provide flexibility to seniors who are concerned they may be required to liquidate their RRIF assets to meet minimum withdrawal requirements. Similar rules apply to individuals receiving variable benefit payments under a defined contribution registered pension plan and a pooled registered pension plan.

Learn more: FAQs – Economic Statement – New Measure for Annuitants of Registered Retirement Income Funds: CRA and COVID-19


Federal government programs

Albertans may also be eligible for financial supports through the federal government:
  • Provides up to 15 weeks of income replacement for eligible Albertans who are unable to work due to illness, injury or quarantine (self-isolation).
  • One-week waiting period is waived for people in self-isolation.
Emergency Care Benefit (launching April 2020)
  • Provides up to 15 weeks of $900 bi-weekly payments to workers without paid sick leave (or similar workplace accommodation) who are sick, quarantined or forced to stay home to care for children.
  • Eligible parents will receive $300 more per child with their regular May CCB payment.
  • Provides low- and modest-income Albertans with a one-time special payment in May of up to $400 for single people and $600 for couples.
  • The required minimum withdrawal from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) will be reduced by 25% in 2020 in recognition of the impact of volatile market conditions on many seniors’ retirement savings.
  • Protecting Alberta’s families and economies (March 18, 2020)

Business Resources:

Newest Links: 


**Small & Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant**

Info HERE!

Starting June 29, businesses can apply for the Small and Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant, which will give them up to $5,000 to offset costs due to the pandemic.

The costs include extra cleaning supplies, physical barriers, personal protective equipment, as well as rent, wages and inventory.

Businesses must have 500 or fewer employees to be eligible for the grant.

Applications for the grant will open up Monday morning at 10 a.m. online.

The program will remain open for businesses to apply until Aug. 31, or for four weeks after Stage 3 of the provincial relaunch is implemented — whichever is later.

During the first week of applications, specific days have been assigned for regions of the province.

  • June 29: North
  • June 30: South
  • July 1: Urban
  • July 2: Calgary
  • July 3: Edmonton
  • July 4 and onwards: open to all areas

More details, including a region map, are available in the grant program guidelines. 

The application portal will launch Monday at alberta.ca


**Alternatives to CEBA Loan $40,000 Business Funding**

_______________________________________________________________________________

*NEW* Applicable For Incorporations: CLICK HERE For the full details!  

Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) — funding requests up to $40,000

Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD) will provide eligible small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with an interest-free repayable contribution of up to $40,000 to help alleviate financial hardship resulting from COVID-19. The objective of this program is to assist western Canadian SMEs that do not qualify for the Canadian Emergency Business Account (CEBA) program or the ‘RRRF – Community Futures Stream.’

Who can apply for the RRRF

The Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) is open to businesses that are not eligible for the Canadian Emergency Business Account (CEBA) program or ‘RRRF – Community Futures Stream.’

Businesses must meet the following mandatory criteria:

Examples of business that are eligible to apply to the RRRF:

  • Pre-revenue firms (e.g. a company that has not had any sales to date)
  • Businesses that do not have salaried employees (e.g. a company with a workforce of contract employees)
  • Businesses with no payroll that do pay their owners a salary (e.g. a company that pays its owners through dividends)

Examples of businesses that are not eligible to apply to the RRRF:

  • Sole proprietorships
  • Not-for-profit organizations

You can also use the RRRF Eligibility Assistant to quickly determine if you can apply.

_____________________________________________________________________________

*NEW* Applicable For SOLE Proprietorships! CLICK HERE For the full details!  

Regional Relief and Recovery Fund – Community Futures Stream

This $962-million Government of Canada fund is to support small and medium size businesses that have been negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. These businesses can now apply for loans of up to $40,000 through RRRF.As the financing terms of RRRF and Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) are similar, rural businesses can choose which program to apply for funding. Applicants can only apply to ONE of these federal programs.

Eligibility requirements

  • Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises (SMEs) located in non-metropolitan regions (all areas served by Community Futures organizations) in Western Canada.
  • SMEs must attest they have not received duplicative supports through other federal or provincial government COVID-19 support programming such as the Canada Emergency Business Account.
  • The small business must have been viable and not experiencing any liquidity or other financial difficulties as of March 1, 2020.
  • The small business must have experienced a material adverse effect on business operations on or after March 1, 2020 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Business established before March 1, 2020.
  • Be a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, social enterprise, or other similar organization.

 


*NEW*Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA)

The CECRA for small businesses application portal opens at 8:00 a.m. EST on May 25, 2020.

We reached an agreement in principle with all provinces and territories to implement the Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) for small businesses. This program will lower rent by 75 per cent for small businesses that have been affected by COVID-19.

The program will provide forgivable loans to qualifying commercial property owners to cover 50% of three monthly rent payments that are payable by eligible small business tenants who are experiencing financial hardship during April, May, and June.

The loans will be forgiven if the mortgaged property owner agrees to reduce the small business tenants’ rent by at least 75% under a rent forgiveness agreement, which will include a term not to evict the tenant while the agreement is in place. The small business tenant would cover the remainder, up to 25% of the rent.

Impacted small business tenants are businesses paying less than $50,000 per month in rent and who have temporarily ceased operations or have experienced at least a 70% drop in pre-COVID revenues. This support will also be available to non-profit and charitable organizations.

It is expected that CECRA will be operational by mid-May, and further details will be announced soon.

View full list of requirements to apply as well as staggered application dates:

Find out more here: https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/finance-and-investing/covid19-cecra-small-business

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy:

The program is live as of Monday April 27, 2020

The program shows up under your RP account through “MyBusinessAccount”

Click the link below for the calculation forms and eligibility criteria:

CLICK HERE FOR THE MOST UPDATED INFORMATION

The Government announced a new Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS). This new 75% wage subsidy will soon be available to eligible employers. Please refrain from calling our call centres at this time.

BDO – This is a great breakdown of the eligibility resources: https://www.bdo.ca/en-ca/insights/tax/tax-alerts/covid-19-wage-subsidy-programs/

Learn More: The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy.

10% Temporary wage subsidy for employers:

The Government announced a 10% temporary wage subsidy for employers for a period of 3 months.

Eligible employers (individuals – excluding trusts, certain partnerships, non-profit organization, registered charity, or Canadian-controlled private corporation eligible for the small business deduction) who pay salary, wages, or taxable benefits to employees, between March 18, 2020 and June 19, 2020, can reduce payroll remittances of federal, provincial, or territorial income tax by the amount of the subsidy. This measure is only applicable to remittances made to the CRA.

Learn more: FAQs for temporary wage subsidy for employers

Deferral of GST/HST Remittances:

The CRA will allow all businesses to defer, until the end of June 2020, any GST/HST payments or remittances that become owing on or after March 27, 2020and before June 2020. This means that no interest will apply if your payments or remittances are made by the end of June 2020.

Learn more: FAQs for deferral of GST/HST Tax Remittances


Other Important Links: 


Canada Emergency Business Account – Revolving Line of Credit

Click HERE for full details:

CEBA: Need $40,000 interest free borrowing? (If you paid between $20,000 and 1 million in payroll last year – 2019, you may qualify)

This is DIRECT through your Banking Institution:

The CEBA is designed to support small business owners in meeting their immediate cash flow needs and includes:

  • A $40,000 interest-free, government‑guaranteed loan to help pay for operating costs that can’t be deferred as a result of COVID‑19.
  • $10,000 (25%) of the $40,000 loan is eligible for complete forgiveness if $30,000 is fully repaid on or before De‍cember 31, 20‍22.
  • If the loan cannot be repaid by De‍cember 31, 20‍22, it can be converted into a 3‑year term loan at an interest rate of 5%.

COVID-19: Changes to our in-office experience – March 24th

We’re in an unprecedented time and the safety of our clients, our associates, and our communities are more important than ever before. On Wednesday March 18th, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Revenu Quebec (RQ) extended the tax deadline to June 1, 2020, which is welcome news for those who are adjusting to their new situations.

At Danielle’s SOS we are working tirelessly to make sure our clients get their refunds, while also getting access to government benefits and credits. As many other businesses, we are taking measures to help flatten the curve and practice social distancing, while continuing to serve you.

Drop-Off Only: Taxes can only be dropped off at offices as of Tuesday March 24, 2020. 

We made the decision to move to a secure, Drop-Off model across Canada effective today, March 24, 2020. This is to support the safety of our associates and clients by enforcing social distancing in our offices. If you typically meet with one of our tax experts to prepare your return, now you will simply bring your documents to our office and our tax experts will prepare your return without you having to wait. The tax expert will call you with any questions to complete your return. 

We can email you our personal tax intake by emailing us at admin@daniellesosbookkeeping.com 

We are doing our best to minimize any disruption while protecting your safety which remains a priority for us.

Bottom line is: we’re here to help and there are many ways we can get you the refund you really need at this time.

As this situation changes day-by-day, hour-by-hour, we will continue to evaluate how we can best help people get their refund, while we try to keep everyone safe.

Thank you for being a client of Danielle’s SOS Bookkeeping Services. We appreciate your understanding and support as we do our best to navigate through this pandemic.

 

How to send digital documents? 

All drop offs and digital documents can be scanned and emailed to admin@daniellesosbookkeeping.com

You can also share a Google Drive or Dropbox File with us

This applies to all personal and corporate clients! 

 

Bookkeeping & Accounting Clients: 

Our bookkeeping & accounting staff are still working remotely to continue to serve your business. 

Year end pickups will now be moved to a digital conversation. We will email you all your financial documents to review and explain via phone call all the numbers. 

Personal Tax Clients: 

Our personal tax specialists are going to be cycling through and working on all drop off files!

Points to remember:

We can pull all your government slips from CRA

Please send us additionally via scan or photo by email – Donation receipts, child care receipts, Medical receipts, union dues, 

 

Payments:

In order to assist our clients we will require payment on your invoices and this can be sent via e-transfer to admin@daniellesosbookkeeping.com, or via creditcard over the phone or by authorization through email. 

We are committed to looking for the safest and most effective ways to serve our clients and we appreciate your patience and understanding in this time of crisis. 

Your business is very important to us and we will continue to do our best to answer your questions and address your concerns. 

 

 

Sincerely

Danielle Pilon – CEO & Owner

Danielle’s SOS Bookkeeping Services Ltd

11804 45 ST NW Edmonton AB T5W2T4

Phone: 587-754-2910

Can I Still Get Life Insurance After a Heart Attack?

It shouldn’t come as a surprise that people with a history of illness like heart disease would have a more difficult time getting approved for life insurance than those who are healthy. But the key word here is difficult, not impossible.

If you’ve had a heart attack, knowing what to expect when you apply for term life insurance will greatly increase your chances of getting good coverage.

What Do Insurance Providers Need to Know?
The key is being open and honest when dealing insurance companies. Don’t withhold information from them, as they will probably require a medical exam anyway, in which everything will come out. You should be prepared to answer the following questions:

  1. When were you diagnosed?
  2. Do you have any underlying issues that caused the heart attack?
  3. How often do you visit your doctor?
  4. What treatments were recommended to you?
  5. What treatments have you had? (Including surgery and medications)
  6. Has your condition improved since first diagnosis?

What If I Have Had Multiple Heart Attacks?
If you have a more serious form of heart disease and/or have had multiple heart attacks, it’s still possible for you to get approved for coverage. You just have to be aware of what your options are. You may not end up with the amount of coverage that you want, but some companies do offer standard or regular term (in some cases substandard) life insurance policies for people with this kind of health history. If traditional coverage is not available, a high-risk life insurance policy or graded benefit term may be necessary.

What Kind of Rates Can I Expect?
Every person’s case will be different, so it’s impossible to say exactly what rates you will be offered. However, for an idea of what you can expect, let’s look at an example.

Kyle is a 43-year-old man who has had two minor heart attacks in his lifetime, although not in the past several years. He is also a non-smoker, which puts him in a better light with insurance companies, and his most recent medical tests show that his condition has improved.

Due to this he will be able to get a life insurance policy, though because he has had multiple heart attacks he may only be offered regular rates or substandard rates rather than regular plus or preferred.

For a $150,000 policy with a 20-year term, Kyle will likely be offered rates between $35 and $70 per month. On the other hand, if Kyle decides to apply for a $100,000 policy for only a 15-year term, the rates he is offered will likely decrease by $10 to $30.

As you can see, it is possible for people to get life insurance coverage after a heart attack. The key is knowing what to expect before you apply.

5 Things Millennials Need to Know About Life Insurance

Being catapulted into the adult world is a shock to the system, regardless of how prepared you think you are. And these days, it’s more complicated than ever, with internet access and mobile devices being must-have utilities and navigating tax forms when they aren’t as “EZ” as they used to be.

Maybe you’re still living with your folks while you get established. Or maybe you’re looking forward to moving out of a rental and into a house or to tie the knot. Life insurance might be the last thing on your list of things to deal with or even think about. (You’re not alone.) But here are five things you might not know about life insurance—that you probably should.

1. Life insurance is a form of protection. If you Google “life insurance” you’ll get a slew of ads telling you how cheap life insurance can be, without nearly enough information about what you need it for. That’s probably because it’s not terribly pleasant to think about: this idea that we could die and someone we care about might suffer financially as a result. Life insurance provides a financial buffer for the people you care about in the event something happens to you. Think just because you’re single, nobody would be left in the lurch? Read the next point.

2. College debt may not go away. Did someone—like your parents—co-sign your student loans through the bank? If so, the bank won’t discharge that debt upon your death the way that the federal government would with federal student loans. That means your parents, or others who signed the paperwork, would be responsible for paying the full balance—sometimes immediately. Don’t saddle them with the bill!

3. If you don’t know anything about life insurance, it’s probably better if you don’t buy it off the internet. It’s what we’re used to: You find the thing you need or love on Amazon or Ebay or Etsy, click a few buttons, and POOF. It arrives at your door. But life insurance is a financial planning product, and while it can be as simple as a 20-year term policy for less than a cup of coffee each day (for real!), going through your options with an insurance professional can ensure that you get the right amount for the right amount of time and at a price that fits into your budget. And many people don’t know that an agent will sit down and help you out at no cost.

4. Social fundraising only goes so far. This relatively recent phenomenon has everyone thinking that they’ll just turn to GoFundMe if things go awry in their lives. But does any grieving person want to spend time administering a social fundraising site? The chances of going viral are markedly slim, and social fundraising sites will take their cut, as will the IRS. And there is absolutely no guarantee about how much—if any—money will be raised.

5. The best time is now. You’ll definitely never be younger than you are today, and for most of us, the younger we are the healthier we are. Those are two of the most important factors for getting affordable life insurance coverage. So don’t delay. The key is taking that first step.

4 Ways to Get Financially Fit in Your 40s

Many people in their 40s are facing an uncomfortable fact: They simply aren’t where they’d hoped to be financially. Fortunately, all their life experience can help correct for past mistakes.

“There’s a different trigger moment for everybody,” says Jay Howard, financial advisor and partner at MHD Financial in San Antonio, Texas. “But regardless of when it comes, people find themselves looking down the barrel of a gun as they consider retirement.”

One challenge is that it’s impossible to advise 40-somethings based on tidy “life stage” demographics. Some are just starting families, while others are sending offspring to college. They’re married, single, divorced, and just about everything in between.

But for those still grappling with financial instability, these four principles can help in moving forward with confidence:

1. Acknowledge what you’ve done right. 
It could be one great decision sandwiched in between some fails, or just a single good habit that can mitigate the impact of a host of wrongs.

Take the example of Kiera Starboard, a 46-year-old controller at a San Diego software firm. A mom to two adult sons and a teenage stepson, she always made having sufficient life insurance—both term and permanent—a priority, the result of her previous training as a financial advisor. “Even if it was tight, I made the payments,” she says. “It was a priority for my family’s sake, and for my own peace of mind.”

Unlike the 40% of Americans who have no life insurance, Starboard was protected when the unthinkable happened last August. Less than two years into her marriage, her husband, Steve, was killed while riding his motorcycle to work—one month after they purchased a small, additional life insurance policy to supplement his employer coverage.

“To have had to deal with financial stress on top of everything else, it would have been unbearable, incapacitating,” says Starboard. “My stepson and I are certainly in a much better position today than we would have been, had Steve and I not followed the advice I used to give to others.”

2. Take action to shore up the decades ahead. 
For many, the hardest part can be learning to put your own long-term future first—sometimes for the first time in your life.

“I see people focusing on their kids’ college savings, and not enough on retirement or an emergency fund for themselves,” says Starboard. Many advisors point out that kids can borrow for college if necessary, but no one can borrow for retirement.

The most important step is clear, says Howard: “You must have a written financial plan, period. Because that plan will dictate what you must do to be successful for the entirely of your life.

“The financial plan is your road map,” he continues. “In it will be your portfolio requirements, your savings goals, and your insurance-related needs.”

Finally, make sure your plan takes inflation into account, commonly estimated at 3% a year. Says Howard, “Inflation is the silent assassin that eats away at your nest egg.”

3. Apply the hard-fought wisdom you’ve gained.
“Treat the numbers determined by your plan—such as monthly savings—as bills that need to be paid,” advises Howard. When money comes in, it’s easy to start thinking of a new kitchen or a trip to Tulum. “Just be patient and keep the bills paid.”

Using that wisdom also applies to the big stuff. As the executor to her husband’s estate, Starboard has held back making any major decisions. “In a prior loss, I committed to real estate transactions and other things prematurely. At the time, it really felt like the right thing to do but my grief clouded my perception. I had a painful, expensive learning lesson.”

4. Focus on your shining future—really.
Forward thinking is an essential part of your financial plan, says Howard. “Get help really envisioning what kind of retirement you want. For each aspect, really drill down. For instance, where do you want to live? Do you want to be near your grandkids? Will you have the money to go see them? How often? It’s not just financial planning, it’s life planning.”

If all that forward thinking feels presumptuous, Howard recalls the eminently quotable Yogi Berra, who once said, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you might not get there.”

And finally, remember the simple refrain: it’s never too late.