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Resources for Businesses

What You Need to Know

Some helpful resources for your business during this challenging time. Please note the information is changing daily, please watch the dates.

The information on this page has been compiled from many sources that are not all controlled by Admin Advantage Ltd. While all reasonable care has been taken in the compilation and publication of the contents of this page, Admin Advantage Ltd makes no representations or warranties, whether express or implied, as to the accuracy or suitability of the information or materials contained in this resource.

Much of this information has been graciously shared by AIS Solutions & adapted for Alberta Business owners.  

Last update April 9th, 2020

Supports for businesses

The Alberta government has announced measures to help small businesses maintain normal business operations.

  • Corporate income tax changes: corporate income tax balances and installment payments will be deferred until August 31, 2020.

  • Utility payment deferral: residents, agri-businesses and small businesses can defer electricity and natural gas bill payments for the next 90 days to ensure no one will be cut off, regardless of the service provider. Call your utility provider directly to arrange for a 90-day deferral on all payments. Learn more about utility payment deferral here.

  • Education property tax freeze: the Alberta government canceled the decision made in Budget 2020 and will freeze education property taxes at last year's level (a savings of $32 million for businesses).

  • Education property tax deferral: the Alberta government has deferred education property tax for businesses for the next six months.

  • WCB premium deferral and relief: WCB premiums have been deferred until early 2021. Employers who have already paid their WCB premium payment for 2020 are eligible for a rebate or credit. For small and medium businesses, the government with cover 50% of the premium when it is due. Find out more here.

  • Tourism levy deferral: Hotels and other lodging providers can delay paying the tourism levy until August 31, 2020 for amounts that become due to government on or after today.

For more detailed information, please visit the Alberta government’s COVID-19 information page.

Employment Standards Changes
  • Creating a job-protected leave for employees caring for children affected by school and daycare closures or ill or self-isolated family members due to COVID-19

    • The 90-day employment requirement is waived.

    • The leave length is flexible and linked to guidance from the Chief Medical Officer.

    • A medical note is not required.

    • Regular personal and family responsibility leave rules continue to apply for all other circumstances.

  • Removing the 24-hour written notice requirement for shift changes

  • Removing the requirement for 2 weeks notice for changes to work schedules for those under an averaging agreement

  • Removing the employer requirement to provide group termination notice to employees and unions when 50 or more employees are being terminated

    • Individual termination entitlements remain in effect.

    • Employers must still give group termination notices to the Minister of Labour and Immigration as soon as is practical.

  • Increasing the maximum time for temporary layoffs from 60 days to 120 days

    • This change is retroactive for temporary layoffs related to COVID-19 that occurred on or after March 17

  • Streamlining approvals for modifying employment standards (variances and exemptions) related to COVID-19

 
Alberta Banks

ATB Financial and Alberta credit unions announced assistance to customers impacted by COVID-19. 

ATB Financial customers impacted by COVID-19

  • Customers can apply for a deferral on their ATB loans, lines of credit, and mortgages for up to six months.

  • Small business customers, in addition to payment deferrals on loans and lines of credit, will be provided access to additional working capital.

  • For other business and agriculture customers, ATB will work with customers on a one-on-one basis and further solutions are being considered at this time.

  • For more information on ATB’s relief program, please visit their website.

 

Alberta credit unions

  • Credit union members will have access to a variety of programs and solutions designed to ease difficulties with loan payments and short-term cash flow.

  • Both individual and business members are encouraged to proactively contact their credit union directly to work out a plan for their personal situation.

BUSINESS - PAYROLL INFORMATION

Canada Student Job Grant

APRIL 8

Announced in theory, however, no portals are yet available as previous deadline for application was February 28

In an effort to assist students who would typically work summer jobs and don't qualify for the CERB, the Federal Government announced some changes to the Canada Summer Job Grant. This measure is meant to encourage businesses to hire students over the coming months

 

Availability:

  • 100% subsidy by the government for the student wages

  • Extension of this program through to Feb 28, 2021

  • Applies to students to the age of 30

 

Eligibility:

  • Unknown as yet

 

Application Process:

  • Unknown as yet

Temporary Wage Subsidy

MARCH 19 - (Updated Apr 3)

Please note - This is one of two Wage Subsidy Programs Available - (see below for the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy)

This is a 10% Wage Subsidy to help small businesses with their payroll requirements. The subsidy benefit is purely for the Employer, to hang onto extra cash flow. Therefore the employee's Paycheque and Net Pay are unaffected by this change. They are still required to pay their fair share of Income Tax, CPP and EI. As such, the employer will still be required to match the CPP and EI accordingly.

 

Availability:

  • Immediately. No application process or advance permission needed.

  • On the next payroll run you process, you can start the calculation and with your next source deduction remittance, you can keep the first subsidy amount. (See Calculation Assistance in the section below)

  • Relates to payroll processed after March 18th, for a period of 3 months (June 18th)

  • You also have the ability to go back retroactively if you haven't claimed the subsidy on any payrolls paid after March 18th.

 

Eligibility:

  • Corporations eligible for the Small business deduction

  • Non-profit organizations

  • Charities

  • Sole Proprietors (with a Business RP Number)

  • Partnerships (with a Business RP Number)

 

Application Process:

  • None

  • Employers will be able to benefit immediately by reducing their remittances (tax liability) of income tax withheld on their employees’ remuneration (earnings)

  • This is being claimed through a reduction of Income-tax payments and not CPP or EI. As a result, there should be no trigger for PIER reviews next year

  • The subsidy will be equal to 10% of remuneration (earnings) paid during that period up to a maximum subsidy of $1,375 per employee and $25,000 per employer.

 

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy

MARCH 27 - (Updated April 8)

 

This is the second of two wage subsidies available. This is not yet available to accept applications and the criteria below is a proposed outline of the program.

 

This program would provide a 75% wage subsidy to eligible employers for up to 12 weeks, retroactive to March 15, 2020.  There is no cap on this subsidy and the eligible pay dates are March 15th - June 6th, 2020. It was also announced that a 100% refund will be given for employer-paid contributions to Employment Insurance, the Canada Pension Plan, the Quebec Pension Plan, and the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan.

 

 

Availability:

  • Program will roll out within the next 3 weeks 

  • Funding will be in the form of direct deposit to the employers bank account.  If direct deposit is not set up, cheques will be mailed out.

 

Eligibility:

  • To qualify, you must demonstrate that your revenues in March fell by 15%, and April and May revenues have dropped by at least 30% as a result of COVID-19

  • The period of revenue comparison is either over the same period last year or vs. January and February of this year

  • The second comparison metric was designed to address those businesses that are start ups, or have been in high growth mode

  • NOT driven by number of employees

  •  Applies to existing or new employees

  • For employees who are non-arms length to the business (ie, owners, shareholders, family members), the maximum amounts that can be claimed will be determined by pre-crisis salaries paid to these individuals.

  • The non-arms length individuals must also have been on payroll prior to March 15th

  • It is not mandatory for the business to pay the remaining 25% of the wage, however it must be attested that every effort was made to do so.

 

Calculation Process:

There are a lot of moving factors with this subsidy.  Calculations are not all confirmed.

  • Revenue Calculation:

    • Current year over last year or

    • March 2020 vs January, February 2020

    • Revenue excluding extraordinary items or capital transactions

    • Arm's length revenues

    • Not for Profits - a new option was announced as well that allows NFP to exclude government subsidies in their revenue calculations

    • Whichever methodology you choose for revenue calculation for March, must remain consistent for the remainder of the periods

  • Subsidy Calculation:

    • Payroll amounts are being driven by pre-crisis amounts paid to employees

    • Subsidy amount is 75% of wages paid to employees  to a maximum of $847/employee/week

  • Employer Payroll Liability Relief Calculation:

    • 100 % of employer-paid contributions for eligible employees for each week throughout which those employees are on leave with pay and for which the employer is eligible to claim for CEWS for those employees.

  • Application Process:

    • Through your My Business Account or a web-based portal

    • Web Application Portal not yet open

    • Expected within the next three weeks

    • Must reapply every month

Full details on the program on the Canada.ca Site

 

 

BUSINESS TAX INFORMATION

WCB ALBERTA Remittance Deferrals

MARCH 27


The Government of Alberta recently announced premium relief measures for private sector employers. Refund cheques will be issued beginning April 6 to private sector employers who have made payments towards their 2020 premiums. WCB expects to have all cheques sent out by the end of April. You do not need to call in to request reimbursement. 

https://www.wcb.ab.ca/assets/pdfs/employers/EFS_Premium_relief.pdf

Income Tax Deferments 

MARCH 18- (Updated Apr 3)

  • All businesses can defer, until after August 31, 2020, the payment of any corporate income tax amounts that become owing on or after today and before September 2020.  This relief would apply to tax balances due, as well as installments, under Part I of the Income Tax Act. No interest or penalties will accumulate on these amounts during this period. 

    • We have confirmed that at this time the filing deadlines for corporate tax remain intact, it is only payments which are delayed.

    • This is in effect immediately

  • CRA  will not contact any small or medium (SME) businesses to initiate any post assessment GST/HST or Income Tax audits for the next four weeks. For the vast majority of businesses, the CRA will also temporarily suspend audit interaction with taxpayers and representatives.

GST/HST Remittance Deferrals

MARCH 27

Businesses, including self-employed individuals can defer until June 30, 2020, payments of GST/HST

 

Deferral applies to GST/HST remittance for:

  • Monthly Filers - February, March and April 2020 reporting periods

  • Quarterly Filers - January 1, 2020 - March 31, 2020 reporting period

  • Annual Filers - Amounts collected & owing for previous fiscal year and installment for the current fiscal year​

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