May 19, 2020

COVID-19: Supports For Students & Recent Graduates – Coronavirus (COVID-19)

COVID-19: Supports For Students & Recent Graduates - Coronavirus (COVID-19)

The Federal Government is investing in students, recent
graduates, and youth to ensure they can continue their studies,
gain work experience, execute service projects, and transition
through their education journey with ease.

A full summary of the Federal Government’s COVID-19 Economic
Response can be found here

Canada Emergency Student Benefit

The Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) provides financial
support to post-secondary students and recent post-secondary and
high school graduates who are unable to find work due to

This benefit is for students who are not eligible for the CERB
or EI.

From May to August 2020, the CESB provides a payment to eligible
students of:

  • $1,250 per month for eligible
    students; or

  • $2,000 per month for eligible
    students with dependents or disabilities


If you are able to work, you must be actively looking for a job
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.

Find out if you are eligible for the CESB here.

Eligibility Definitions

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

Who can be claimed as a dependent?

  • 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

Eligibility Periods

The number of eligibility periods you can apply for and the
total amount you can receive, depends on whether you’re a
graduating or post-secondary student, or a graduating high school

May 10 to June 6, 2020

$1,250 or $2,000

Depending on your eligibility

June 7 to July 4, 2020 $1,250 or $2,000

Depending on your eligibility

July 5 to August 1, 2020 $1,250 or $2,000

Depending on your eligibility

August 2 to August 29,
$1,250 or $2,000

Depending on your eligibility

Which Periods You Can Apply For

Each eligibility period is a four-week period with a specific
start and end date. When you apply, you will receive a payment for
the specific eligibility period you applied for.

You can only apply for one eligibility period at a time. If your
situation continues, you must re-apply for another four-week
eligibility period.

Post-secondary students

The CESB is available to eligible
post-secondary students, post-secondary graduates, and students who
have recently left their post-graduate studies.

You can start applying during the May 10 to June 6 eligibility
period. If your situation continues, you must re-apply for another
four-week eligibility period.

Eligibility periods for post-secondary students:

  • August 2 to August 29, 2020

Graduating high school students

The CESB is only available to eligible students who:

  • completed or expect to complete high
    school, or received, or expect to receive their high school
    equivalency in 2020

  • applied for a post-secondary
    educational program that starts before February 1, 2021

If you complete high school:

  • before June 7, 2020,
    your high school completion date must be before the start of the
    first eligibility period you are applying for

  • after June 7, 2020,
    you can only apply for two eligibility periods, starting from the
    July 5 to August 1 eligibility period

Determine which periods you can apply for here.

Continuing to Get Your Payment

Continue to look for work

If you are able to work, you must be actively looking for a job
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.

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) may ask you to provide
information later to verify that you have been looking for work
during the eligibility period(s) that you have applied for, so it
is important to keep track of your daily job search activities.

Registering with the Government of Canada Job Bank is an easy way
for you to show that you are looking for work. Once registered, the
Job Bank will notify you of current jobs available in your field
and location, as well as jobs available in essential sectors. You
can also use the Job Bank to find tips to help you update your
resume and explore career options. By using the Job Bank, you can
keep track of your job search activities in one place.

Re-apply for the CESB

To re-apply for the CESB, one of the following must still

  • you are unable to work due to

  • you are looking for, but cannot find
    work due to COVID-19

  • you are currently working during the
    COVID-19 pandemic, but your income from employment and
    self-employment has been $1,000 or less (before taxes) during the
    four-week period you are applying for

If your situation continues, you can re-apply for another
four-week eligibility period.

When and how to expect your payment

If you are eligible for the CESB, you can expect $1,250 for the
four-week eligibility period you applied for or $2,000 for those
who have dependents or a disability.

The fastest way to get your payment is to make sure your direct
deposit is set up. Direct deposit is paid in three business days,
otherwise, you should get a cheque in about 10 business days.

Return or Re-Pay a Payment

Why you would send the CESB back

You must return or repay the CESB if you:

  • are able to find work and are earning
    more than $1,000 (before taxes) during an eligibility period
    you’ve applied for

  • applied for CESB and later found that
    you are not eligible

  • received more than what you are
    entitled to

Impact on your taxes

The CESB is taxable. This means you will need to report any
amounts you received from the CESB on next year’s income tax

You will receive a T4A tax slip for the amount of CESB you
receive. The tax slip will also be available in your CRA My Account
for the 2020 tax year.

If you repay the CESB before December 31, 2020, the CRA
won’t include the amount you’ve repaid on your T4A

How to return or repay the CESB

You can return or repay your CESB payment online or by mail.

If you were paid by direct deposit or don’t have the
original CESB cheque

To repay the CESB, choose one of the following options:

  • Online banking: with
    your financial institution

1. sign in to online banking

2. under “Add a payee” select option “CRA
(revenue) – tax instalment”

3. enter your 9-digit Social Insurance Number (SIN) as the CRA
account number

  • By mail: send a
    cheque or money order to the CRA

1. make payment out to “Receiver General for

2. indicate it is for “Repayment of CESB”

3. indicate which eligibility period you are repaying

4. include your Social Insurance Number (SIN) or your Temporary
Tax Number (TTN)

5. mail your payment, refer to below

If you still have the original CESB cheque

You can return the cheque by mail.

Be sure to include:

1. the reason for returning the cheque (not entitled or

2. your Social Insurance Number (SIN) or Temporary Tax Number

Mailing address

Revenue Processing – Repayment of CESB

Sudbury Tax Centre

1050 Notre Dame Avenue

Sudbury ON P3A 0C3

For questions or concerns pertaining to the CESB, contact the Government of Canada

Loan Deferrals

All student loan borrowers will automatically have their loan
repayments and interest suspended until September 30,

Students do not need to apply for the repayment pause.

This moratorium applies to the federal portion of student loans.
Borrowers should check with their provincial or territorial student
loan provider to see if payment is required on the provincial or
territorial portion.

Enhancing Student Financial Assistance for Fall 2020

To address additional financial needs of students caused by the
COVID-19 pandemic, the Federal Government proposes to change the
Canada Student Loan Program’s (CSLP) eligibility requirements
in 2020-21 to allow more students to qualify for supports and be
eligible for greater amounts, including doubling the non-repayable
Canada Student Grants for full and part-time students, as well as
for students with disabilities, and students with dependents, in
the coming academic year.

  • Eligible full-time students can
    receive up to $6,000

  • Eligible part-time students can
    receive up to $3,600

  • The Canada Student Grants for
    Students with Permanent Disabilities and Students with Dependents
    would also be doubled.

The CSLP is delivered in collaboration with 10 participating
jurisdictions. Students in Quebec, Northwest Territories, and
Nunavut do not receive CSLP support as these jurisdictions run
their own student financial assistance programs. Additional
compensation will be offered to provinces and territories that do
not participate in the CSLP.

In addition, to ensure students can continue their studies in
the upcoming fall semester, the Federal Government will:

  • Broaden eligibility for student
    financial assistance by removing the expected student’s and
    spouse’s contributions in 2020-21, recognizing that many
    students and families will struggle to save for school this

  • Enhance the CSLP by raising the
    maximum weekly amount that can be provided to a student in 2020-21
    from $210 to $350.

  • Increase existing distinctions-based
    support for First Nations, Inuit, and Métis Nation students
    pursuing post-secondary education by providing an additional $75.2
    million in 2020-21.

  • Extend expiring federal graduate
    research scholarships and postdoctoral fellowships, and supplement
    existing federal research grants, to support students and
    post-doctoral fellows, by providing $291.6 million to the federal
    granting councils. Funding would support a one-semester extension
    for eligible students whose research scholarships or fellowships
    end between March and August 2020 and who intend to continue their
    studies. It would also provide a three-month extension in funding
    for holders of federal research grants to support eligible trainees
    and staff paid out of these awards. These extensions cannot be
    combined with other income supports.

  • The Federal Government also intends
    to enhance work opportunities for graduate students and
    post-doctoral fellows through the National Research Council of
    Canada with an investment of $7.5 million.

Canada Student Service Grant: “I Want to Help”

The new Canada Student Service Grant will help students gain
valuable work experience and skills while they help their
communities during the COVID 19 pandemic. For students who choose
to do national service and serve their communities, the new Canada
Student Service Grant will provide up to $5,000 for their education
in the fall.

More details will be made available on the I Want to
platform over the coming weeks, including more detailed
information about eligibility, the levels of funding available
under the grant, how to apply for a national service position, and
how applications will be assessed.

Canada Summer Jobs Program

To support students who are preparing to enter the work force
this summer, the Federal Government has committed $263 million in
funding for the Canada Summer Jobs program. This will support up to
70,000 job placements for youth 15 to 30 years of age. The
temporary changes to the program in response to COVID-19 for the
2020 year include:

  • an increase to the wage subsidy, so
    that private and public sector employers can also receive up to
    100% of the provincial or territorial minimum hourly wage for each

  • an extension to the end date for
    employment to February 28, 2021;

  • allowing employers to adapt their
    projects and job activities to support essential services; and

  • allowing employers to hire staff on a
    part-time basis.

The Canada Summer Jobs call for applications for the 2020 season
closed on February 28, 2020. In response to the economic impacts
created by the COVID-19 situation, Members of Parliament will work
to identify organizations that provide essential services in the
community and could provide youth jobs but did not apply for the
Canada Summer Jobs program in 2020.

Job placements could begin as early as May 11, 2020, and end as
late as February 28, 2021.

Youth will be able to search for jobs available in their
communities through the Job Bank website and app.

Supporting Students through Expanded Student and Youth

The government is creating and connecting students to meaningful
employment and service opportunities, with:

  • $153.7 million for the Youth
    Employment and Skills Strategy to help youth develop the skills and
    gain the experience they need to successfully transition into the
    labour market. Funding will support a range of measures in
    high-demand sectors such as agriculture, technology, health, and
    essential services, creating over 6,000 additional job

  • $80 million for the Student Work
    Placement Program to support up to 20,000 post-secondary students
    across Canada to obtain paid work experience related to their field
    of study.

  • $15 million for the Supports for
    Student Learning Program to serve an additional 14,700 youth
    through support to complete high school and transition to
    post-secondary education in order to help ensure that vulnerable
    children and youth do not become further marginalized as a result
    of COVID-19.

  • Additional support for the Canada
    Service Corps to expand support for meaningful youth service
    projects that have positive impacts in communities across Canada,
    including increasing the number of microgrants from 1,800 to
    15,000, and providing stipends to participants.

  • $40 million to Innovation, Science
    and Economic Development to support Mitacs in order to create 5,000
    new job placements. The Business/Higher Education Roundtable (BHER)
    will also create a further 5,000 to 10,000 new student placements,
    by reorienting existing federal support and building online

International Students

The Government of Canada will remove the restriction that allows
international students to work only a maximum of 20 hours per week
while classes are in session, provided they are working in an
essential service or function, such as health care, critical
infrastructure, or the supply of food or other critical goods.

International students and their employers should consult Public
Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada’s Guidance on
Essential Services and Functions in Canada during the COVID-19
Outbreak to determine if the work the student is doing would allow
them to work more than 20 hours per week during the academic
session. This temporary rule change will be in place until August
31, 2020.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.

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