Tax Measures Under Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

Reader Alert: On September 24th, 2020, the Speech from the Throne announced many tax and related initiatives including the extension of the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (the “CEWS”) program to the summer of 2021.[1]

Reader Alert: On July 17, 2020, the Government of Canada released details, as well as draft legislation, in respect of a redesigned Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (the “CEWS”) program. The legislative proposals, in the form of Bill C-20, An Act respecting further COVID-19 measures (“Bill C-20”), received Royal Assent. Bill C-20 can be found here, and the backgrounder and news release relating to the legislative proposals released on July 17, 2020 can be found here and here. In addition, a more detailed commentary from our Firm on Bill C-20 can be found here.[2][3][4][5]

Reader Alert: On May 15, 2020, the Government of Canada announced that the CEWS will be extended by an additional 12 weeks to August 29, 2020, and that regulatory changes have been made to extend eligibility of the CEWS to additional categories of employers. The Government also announced its intention to propose legislative changes intended to bridge gaps in respect of seasonal employees and employees returning from extended leave, accommodate certain amalgamations and wind-ups, and better align the tax treatment of trusts and corporations for CEWS purposes. The press release and backgrounder can be found here, and additional commentary from our Firm on the announcement can be found here.[6][7]

Reader Alert: on April 11, 2020, the Government of Canada passed Bill C-14, enacting the CEWS, a 75% employer wage subsidy. More detailed tax commentary on CEWS can be found here and a more comprehensive summary of this measure can be found here.[8][9]

Since March 18, 2020, the Government of Canada announced a series of tax and economic measures under Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan[10] (the “ResponsePlan”) to support the Canadian economy during the COVID-19 global pandemic. The Response Plan is designed to help stabilize the Canadian economy, and includes measures to assist both individuals and businesses through direct transfers, tax deferrals, and measures to ensure businesses continue to have access to credit.

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