Who can get the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB)?

The Canadian government created the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) for people who do not qualify for Employment Insurance (EI) and who have to care for their children or a close family member because of COVID-19.

The first day that you could get CRCB money for was September 27, 2020. CRCB gives $500 a week for up to for 42 weeks. It's available until at least November 20, 2021. The government plans to extend the program again to May 7, 2022, but this is not the law yet.

You apply for the CRCB for one week at a time through your online CRA MyAccount. You must wait until the Monday after the week you have missed work to apply. And you must apply within 60 days of missing work.

Who will qualify

To qualify for the CRCB, all of the following must apply to you:

  • you live in Canada, are at least 15 years old, and have a  (SIN)
  • you have a job or are self-employed on the day before you would get a CRCB payment
  • you're not eligible for EI
  • you had at least $5,000 in income from employment or self-employment in 2019, 2020 or in the 12 months before the day you apply for the program. EI maternity and parental benefits count as income. Only your net earnings count for self-employment income.

Usually, the people who qualify for the CRCB will be self-employed or independent contractors, sometimes called gig workers. These people are not eligible for EI.

To qualify, you must also miss at least 50% of your time at work during the week that you apply for the CRCB. You must miss this time to care for your child or a family member who needs care.

Missing work because of a child

If you're missing work because of your child, it must be because:

  • your child can't go to their school or daycare because it's closed or not accepting as many students as it usually does because of COVID-19,
  • a doctor ordered your child not to go to school because they have COVID-19, they might have COVID-19, or they have a condition that makes them vulnerable to COVID-19, or
  • your child's regular caregiver is not available because of COVID-19.

Your child must be 11 years or younger during the week you missed work.

Missing work because of another family member

If you're missing work to care for a family member who's a dependant or has a , it must be a “close family member”. For example, it must be a parent, aunt or uncle, sibling, or another family member that you have a close relationship with.

You must be caring for them because:

  • their day program or care home can't take them because of COVID-19,
  • they have COVID-19 or they've been told to isolate by their employer or a medical professional because of COVID-19,
  • their doctor has told them that they should not go to their normal care program or facility because they're at extra risk of getting COVID-19, or
  • their regular caregiver is not available because of COVID-19
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