The Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) has been augmented as of December 4, 2020. For existing CEBA recipients, a $20,000 expansion is available (Department of Finance Canada, 2020). If the expansion application is approved, the $20,000 will be added to your original CEBA loan and the funds will be deposited into the account you provided.
For eligible businesses that have not yet applied, a $60,000 loan is now available. This enhancement is available to eligible businesses facing financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The application deadline for both the expansion and the full $60,000 loan is March 31, 2021. Half of the $20,000 will be forgivable if the loan is repaid by December 31, 2022. Regarding the full $60,000 loan, the total forgiveness would be $20,000 if repaid by December 31, 2022. For businesses that choose not to apply for the expansion, the original loan forgiveness terms apply ($10,000 forgiveness on the $40,000 loan) if repaid by December 31, 2022 (Department of Finance Canada, 2020). Although the government enabled the expansion as of December 4, 2020, some financial institutions do not have the expansion available but will have it available shortly (please contact your relevant financial institution for details).
Additional considerations regarding the $20,000 CEBA expansion:
- Updated Forgiveness Terms
- If the loan total is up to $40,000 you will receive 25% forgiveness as long as 75% is repaid by December 31, 2022(Devaney, 2020).
- If the total is above $40,000 you will only get forgiveness if you pay $30,000 plus 50% of the excess on time with the forgiven amount being $10,000 plus 50% of the excess of $40,000(Devaney, 2020)
- If the $40,000 loan has been repaid and forgiveness already claimed and you borrowed an additional $20,000 you will receive 50% forgiveness once you’ve repaid 50% of the loan(Devaney, 2020).
- Modified Eligibility Criteria
- Applying for the expansion can alter your original loan agreement. An amended agreement is required to be signed that will retroactively apply to the full loan amount and can include a point that states that all expenditures since the beginning of the program must be “non-deferrable eligible expenses”. This would apply even if the first loan agreement did not include this language (Devaney, 2020).
- Further Attestation
An additional attestation is required that states the business has been negatively impacted by COVID-19. Owners must attest that the business is facing ongoing hardship such as continued decline in revenue or an increase in operating costs as a result of COVID-19. Further, the business must have intentions to continue operating along with making all reasonable efforts to adapt to COVID-19 (Devaney, 2020).
Some additional changes to the original CEBA program include (Department of Finance Canada, 2020):
- Increasing the payroll eligibility range to between $20,000 and $1.5 million
- Enabling CEBA for owner-operated small businesses that do not have a payroll, sole proprietors receiving business income, and family-owned corporations remunerating in the form of dividends rather than payroll.
- Enabling CEBA for businesses that operate from a personal banking account that had previously been unable to apply due to not operating from a business banking account
To qualify for CEBA, applicants must have (Government of Canada, 2020):
- An active CRA business number with an effective date of registration on or prior to March 1, 2020
- And either 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
Eligible non-deferrable expenses include (Government of Canada, 2020):
- Wages and other employment expenses to independent (arm’s length) third parties;
- Rent or lease payments for real estate used for business purposes;
- Rent or lease payments for capital equipment used for business purposes;
- Payments incurred for insurance-related costs;
- Payments incurred for property taxes;
- Payments incurred for business purposes for telephone and utilities in the form of gas, oil, electricity, water and internet;
- Payments for regularly scheduled debt service;
- Payments incurred under agreements with independent contractors and fees required in order to maintain licenses, authorizations or permissions necessary to conduct business by the Borrower;
- Payments incurred for materials consumed to produce a product ordinarily offered for sale by the Borrower.
If you are not sure if you are eligible or not, a helpful tool called the “CEBA Pre-Screen Tool” can be used to help determine if your business is eligible or not. The Pre-Screen Tool can be found here: https://verify-verifier.ceba-cuec.ca/
To apply for the expansion or the full $60,000 loan, eligible institutions should contact their financial institution that provided their initial CEBA loan and provide all the appropriate documentation or information.
Additional information can be found on the CEBA FAQ site. Alternatively, you may call the CEBA hotline for detailed information regarding information or details on existing applications. The CEBA hotline can be reached at 1-888-324-4201. As always, our office is more than happy to assist you as well and we can be reached at 780-532-4641.
Department of Finance Canada. (2020, December 4). Government expands Canada Emergency Business Account loans. Retrieved from Government of Canada: https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/news/2020/12/government-expands-canada-emergency-business-account-loans.html
Devaney, J. (2020, December 8). 3 Cautions before applying for CEBA 2.0 ($20,000). Retrieved from LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/posts/joseph-devaney-cpa-ca-7501a537_3-cautions-before-applying-for-ceba-20-activity-6741861750964146176-Qcgl
Government of Canada. (2020, December 10). Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) FAQ. Retrieved from Government of Canada: https://ceba-cuec.ca/