Tips & Tricks 16/04/20 |

The introduction of COVID-19 into our lives has transformed the way we go about living. The virus has left many individuals without a job or with reduced hours. Many resources have been made available to residents of York Region and Canada.

For individuals, the Canadian government has announced significant measures to support Canadians through the pandemic. Here are the measures the support for individuals and families

  • A new temporary salary top-up for low-income essential workers. This means increasing the Canada child benefit up to an extra $300 per child for 2019-20. 
  • Special Goods and Services Tax credit payment. Starting on April 9th the average additional benefit will be close to $400 for single individuals and close to $600 for couples.
  • Mortgage Support. This includes permitting lenders to defer up to six monthly mortgage payments (interest and principal) for impacted borrowers. Read more about mortgage deferrals on our blog: https://www.getbenczik.com/what-to-know-when-a-mortgage-payment-deferral-is-needed/

For seniors, there will be reduced minimum withdrawals for Registered Retirement Income Funds, immediate and essential services through the New Horizons for Seniors Program and personal outreach. Communities such as Stouffville and Uxbridge have begun reaching out to their seniors through additional programs. Uxbridge has implemented a program where you can register a senior to receive phone calls from the Town of Uxbridge Staff. In Stouffville has created a Community Care Network where individuals can sign up to assist others and call seniors.

Some communities have passed on financial relief to their members. In Markham the city has indicated that there will be no late payment charges on unpaid tax balances from April 1 to December 31 and they will be deferring the 2020 water rate increase of 7.8%

In Stouffville, the town will be waiving interest charges and penalties on the next municipal property tax and the next water bill. The town has also indicated that it will waive the interest penalty until May 29 for tax bills due on April 17.

Businesses have also seen some relief from their local governments. Markham announced that business will receive the following relief measures.

  • There will be no late payment charges on unpaid tax balances from April 1 to December 31
  • The 2020 water rate increase of 7.8% will be deferred. 
  • There will be no stormwater rate for industrial/commercial properties for 2020
  • The Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT) for 2020 will be suspended

Overall the country and the province are committed to assisting everyone through this pandemic. The Government of Canada announced an $82 billion package to help Canadians and businesses cope with the COVID-19 outbreak, including supports, wage subsidies and tax deferrals. The package includes $27 billion in direct supports and another $55 billion to help business liquidity through tax deferrals. For all the details visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/department-finance/economic-response-plan.html

The Province of Ontario is investing up to $304 million to enhance the province’s response to COVID-19 and York Region is committed to working and collaborating with all levels of government to implement economic recovery measures. 

Insurance companies are now offering different ways to support individuals financially. If you are now working from home, speak to your insurance company and save money each month.

During this time of economic uncertainty, many planned tax and payment dates have been changed. For individuals Here are new due dates:

  • The filing date for 2019 tax year: June 1, 2020, extended
  • The payment date for 2019 tax year: September 1, 2020, extended
  • Includes the June 15, 2020, instalment payment for those who have to pay by instalments.
  • Self-employed and their spouse or common-law partner – Due dates
  • The filing date for 2019 tax year: June 15, 2020, unchanged
  • The payment date for 2019 tax year: September 1, 2020, extended
  • Includes the June 15, 2020, instalment payment for those who have to pay by instalments.

If you are not sure who to contact during this time, click here for an image of the complete tiers of government.

If you require any assistance during these times reach out to our office and we can assist in any way possible. We have created several connections over the years and should you require clarification on any of the resources, do not hesitate to contact us. Stay safe and stay healthy.

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