Canada: Emergency wage subsidy (75%) enacted (COVID-19)

Canada: Emergency wage subsidy (75%) enacted (COVID-19)

Canada has enacted emergency wage subsidy legislation to help businesses retain employees during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

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Canada’s emergency wage subsidy is a temporary measure, being made available to qualifying employers that have lost revenue due to COVID-19. This temporary wage subsidy generally provides an amount to employers equal to 75% of the remuneration paid to employees, up to a maximum of $847* per week per employee, from 15 March 2020 to 6 June 2020.

The legislation for the subsidy (passed into law on 11 April 2020) confirms many details of the program that were already known, and provides additional guidance on how employers can qualify for the subsidy. In particular, there are new rules that:

  • Clarify the calculation of a decrease in revenue, including for amounts derived from non-arm's length persons or partnerships
  • Outline how employers must attest to their eligibility
  • Provide details on how employers that qualify for the wage subsidy may also receive a 100% refund for certain employer-paid contributions


KPMG observation

With enactment of the 75% emergency wage subsidy, as well as the 10% temporary wage subsidy for certain small businesses, affected employers need to consider acting quickly to determine whether they qualify for these subsidies and start the application process.
 

Read an April 2020 report [PDF 224 KB] prepared by the KPMG member firm in Canada
 

*$=Canadian dollar

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