The CERS program will provide financial support to qualifying businesses, charities and non-profit organizations affected by the Covid-19 pandemic through a subsidy that is provided directly to tenants and property owners. This is a significant change from the previous rent assistance program, which was paid directly to landlords and passed on to tenants.
The subsidy will be available for qualified organizations on a sliding scale with the maximum subsidy topping out at 65% of the monthly eligible expenses until December 19, 2021. The sliding scale will be based upon revenue drop, similar to the calculations used in the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) calculations. In addition to the base subsidy, organizations that have been forced to temporarily close as a result of a mandatory public health order will be eligible for an additional top up subsidy of 25% (known as the Lockdown Support), bringing the total maximum subsidy to 90% of the monthly eligible expenses.
The program will cover the period of September 27, 2020 to December 19, 2020 and can be extended to June 30, 2021. It will use the same 4-week claim periods as the CEWS.
Does my organization qualify?
In order to qualify, organizations must demonstrate a drop in monthly, year-over-year revenue due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. Organizations must calculate their percentage drop in revenue, which would then be used to calculate the subsidy rate.
What expenses qualify for the subsidy?
Eligible expenses include:
- Commercial rent (including rent in arrears)
- Property taxes (including school and municipal taxes)
- Property insurance
- Interest on commercial mortgages, subject to limitations
Expenses for each qualifying period would be capped at $75,000 per location and $300,000 per affiliated group of entities.
A CERS application must be filed no later than 180 days after the end of a claim period. Applications can be made online through your CRA My Business Account.
We encourage you to contact us if you have any questions about program eligibility or applications.