CERB Overpayments – solution

March 24, 2021

Hundreds of thousands of Canadians received CERB payments they should never have had.  Although the government likes to play the blame game, the reality is that the roll-out of this and other benefit packages was badly botched by the government itself.  No back-checks were put into place even though the CRA and Service Canada (the two administrators) had access to sufficient information to provide a proper and thorough screening of applicants.

Some recipients were able to double dip on the benefits, inadvertently or otherwise, by making application through both the CRA and Service Canada simultaneously.  Kids in Highschool were getting funds too, as well as people on other forms of government benefits, that disqualified them from the benefit.

The government has forged ahead with collection activity and is asking “overpayment” recipients to repay the funds, which remain deemed to be income for the year in which they were received and are therefore taxable as well.  At this writing we are unaware of any prohibition having been placed on the filing of a bankruptcy or proposal to resolve the debt issues.

The government did, previously, attempt to pass legislation that would, in effect, have criminalized the receipt of such funds and made it impossible to find a resolution through an insolvency proceeding.  Fortunately, the bill was defeated at first reading.  Our office is starting to see people coming in to make proposals and bankruptcies to solve the issue.

If you need help with this and/or other debt problems call us for a free consultation at (519)-646-2222