The government this morning announced major support for Canada medium and small businesses.  There are limited details available today with Prime Minister Trudeau indicating that the details will be rolled out by Monday, March 30.  The PM  indicated that the plan is being put in place to ensure that businesses are able to continue to employ employees, despite reduction or elimination in revenue due to COVID-19.  His stated goal is to ensure that the businesses are all still there when this crisis is over.  He said that he is announcing the plan without details so that companies can broadly make decisions knowing that this support is out there.

The broad strokes of the enhanced plan include the following:

  1. wage subsidies will increase from 10% to 75%, with the increase backdated to March 15.  Indications are that the program will be applied as widely as possible.  Information regarding particulars of the program, including eligibility requirements, maximum amounts per employer and per employee and length of time the subsidy will be available have not yet been announced;
  2. Announcement of availability of a $40,000 loan for small businesses, which is interest free for one year and with the possibility of a $10,000 forgivable portion based on circumstances.  Details regarding eligibility are not yet available nor are the details regarding circumstances that must be met to obtain the forgivable portion;
  3. Indications that GST/PST tax and duties could be deferred until June 2020.

As the details of this program become available we will provide further information.


This post was authored by Rose Keith, QC. Please don’t hesitate to contact her at or anyone else from our Authors page if you have any questions.

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