Government encourages failed applicants to re-apply
The transition to new government benefits with the demise of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) has not gone as smoothly as hoped.
Over the weekend, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)’s My Account and automated phone line were not available, “due to routine system maintenance.”
That meant people could not apply for these new government benefits: the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB), the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) and the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB), along with the CERB.
The CRB gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are directly affected by COVID-19 and are not entitled to employment insurance (EI) benefits. It provides $500 per week for up to 26 weeks to workers who have stopped working or had their employment/self-employment income reduced by at least 50 per cent due to COVID-19 and who are not eligible for employment insurance (EI).
Previously, an economist warned that more than two million Canadians would be worse off transitioning from the CERB to the employment insurance (EI) program.
Even before the weekend, many Canadians complained about problems accessing the CRB. The CRA warned they may be encountering the message “Error code COV-026.”
“If you tried applying for #CRB and got this error saying you’re ineligible, please try again. If your application continues to be stopped, it’s because you might be eligible for EI, or you applied for EI earlier this year… Those eligible for EI should apply through [ServiceCanada].”
The CRA also noted that it has changed the way it shares information with Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) to ensure Canadians are "not mistakenly applying for both EI and the CRB.”