Canadians who quit their jobs will need to pay back their CERB payments
If you recently quit your job and you're wondering if you're eligible for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), there's some bad news for you: technically, you aren't.
The CERB is available to Canadians that have lost their income as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, including contract workers, gig workers, part-time workers, seasonal workers and anyone earning $1,000 a month or less.
If you're eligible for the benefit, you'll receive $2,000 each month for up to 16 weeks.
However, the Canadian government is automatically approving all applications right now, which means that you'll get a CERB payment even if you're not eligible — and when the applications are checked at a later date, you'll have to pay it back.
The bottom line? If you voluntarily quit your job, or refuse a call to return to work, then you're not eligible for the CERB.
However, there are some notable exceptions to this rule.
If you're sick or taking care of someone who is sick with COVID-19, then you're eligible for the CERB. Working parents who must stay home to care for children are also eligible.
Hey Canadians! 📣 If your EI maternity or parental benefits are coming to an end and you are unable to return to work due to #COVID19, you may be eligible for the #CERB 👪— Employment and Social Development Canada (@ESDC_GC) April 24, 2020
➡️ https://t.co/h4cq3mDg5Z pic.twitter.com/VRhBxomLtD
Similarly, if you're immunocompromised and you feel that it isn't safe to return to work, you're eligible for the CERB as long as you obtain a note from your doctor.
Furloughed employees on unpaid leave can also receive the CERB, provided they meet eligibility requirements, even if they continue to receive medical benefits from their employer.
Canadians who are eligible for the CERB will need to reapply for the benefit each month.
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