Following my question in the House of Commons last week to Small Business Minister Mary Ng, I am pleased to see that the Liberal Government is now allowing small businesses employing personal banking accounts to apply for a Canada Emergency Business Account.
As of today, the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) will be available to businesses that have been operating out of a
non-business banking account.
To be eligible, businesses must have been operating as a business as of March 1, 2020, must successfully open a business account at a Canadian financial institution that is participating in CEBA, and meet the other existing CEBA eligibility criteria. The deadline to apply for CEBA is December 31, 2020.
CEBA is part of the Government of Canada’s economic response plan to help Canadians and Canadian businesses deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. The measures under this plan are helping businesses keep their doors open, keep their employees on payroll, protect the jobs that Canadians depend on, and recover quickly when the time comes.
CEBA provides zero-interest loans up to $40,000 to small business and non-profit organizations that have experienced diminished revenues due to COVID-19 but face ongoing non-deferrable costs, such as rent, utilities, insurance, taxes and wages. Repaying the balance of the loan on or before December 31, 2022 will result in loan forgiveness of 25 percent (up to $10,000).
Since its launch, modifications to CEBA to help even more small businesses, including:
- increasing the payroll eligibility range from between $50,000 and
$1.0 million to between $20,000 and $1.5 million;
- making CEBA available to owner-operated small businesses that do not have a payroll, sole proprietors receiving business income directly, as well as family-owned corporations remunerating in the form of dividends rather than payroll.
To qualify for CEBA, all applicants must have:
- An active Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) business number with an effective date of registration on or prior to March 1, 2020;
- meet the payroll eligibility criteria; or
- demonstrate a minimum of $40,000 in eligible non-deferrable expenses, and have filed a 2018 or 2019 tax return.
To assess their eligibility for CEBA, applicants can use the pre-screening tool on the CEBA website. To apply for CEBA, businesses should contact their financial institution and provide the appropriate information and documentation.
Applicants may contact the CEBA Call Centre at 1-888-324-4201 to receive a status update on a completed application between Monday to Friday from
8 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST.