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Nearly 100,000 students to take a break on CERB repayments

Nearly 100,000 students have been asked to repay the CERB benefits claimed during the

COVID-19 pandemic .

Under the Order in Council adopted without fanfare earlier this month, students are being asked for the amount of money that may have been raised under the COVID Assistance Program for Students. It can be deducted from the amount of benefits. I will repay it.

Minister of Employment, Labor Development and Disability Inclusion, Carla Quatlov of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) when the government followed up on payments of benefits made during the pandemic. I mentioned below that I noticed many students who received the benefits) I actually had to apply for another program, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CESB). The

CERB program has benefited workers who lost their jobs due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but CESB helps students who couldn't find a job in the first place. Was designed to be. Pandemic.

In some cases, students were told that they would have to repay thousands of dollars with the CERB payments they received, but it was too late to apply for student benefits.

The remission order, which was approved by the Cabinet on June 2, aims to address what Quatlov describes as "injustice."

"If you decide that you owe money to CERB, you may tell yourself. If I knew I wasn't eligible for CERB, I would You would have applied for student benefits because you knew it. Mr. Quatlov said in an interview with CBC News: "You are the one we help with. You are the one we are correcting this inequality. "

Qualtrough estimates that this move can help an estimated 98,000 students.

No other reconciliation orders: Qualtrough

CERB paid $ 2,000 per month, while the Student Benefit Program paid $ 1,250 per month. She said some students were able to use that amount to reduce the amount they were required to repay.

"This will significantly offset the amount that people are supposed to pay in CERB repayments."

The government plans to solve the problem in its December financial outlook last year. The government budgeted $ 67.9 million for debt relief when it first telegraphed.

Mr. Quatlov said the adoption of the remission order was delayed, partly because the government withheld CERB overpayment due to the Omicron wave of COVID-19.

"Thanks to Omicron, we decided not to aggressively pursue CERB's debt at that time," explained Quatlov. "Now we are back at the stage of following up on what the individual owes to CERB, and at the same time we are in a position to execute this remission order."

Watch: Support for students asked to repay CERB's money:

Carla Quatlov, Employment, Workplace Development, Disability The Minister of Inclusion describes a new remission order to assist students seeking repayment of CERB benefits.

To qualify for a remission order, students must apply to CERB by September 30, 2020 and not receive CESB, employment insurance, local benefits, etc. there is. Receive childcare leave or maternity leave benefits at the same time. You also need to meet one of the following three criteria: Could not work because of COVID-19. They were looking for a job. They worked and earned less than $ 1,000 before tax during the four-week CESB period they were able to apply for.

The Canada Revenue Agency has launched a websiteoutlining the terms of theremission order and a link to theapplication form

CBC News Asked CRA if you are informing the student about the remission order when sending the repayment notice. Spokesman Christopher Doody said the CRA did not mention potential student breaks in repayment notices because "there is no way to identify eligible individuals under remission orders." I am.

Quatlov said the difference will be reimbursed if the student has already repaid the CERB benefits received.

Qualtrough said the government has no plans for other reconciliation orders at this time

The government has informed some CERB recipients that benefits must be repaid. However, Qualtrough said the government "is working hard to make this as painless as possible for people," allowing them to pay for months or years. I am doing it.

"We strive to be as flexible as possible so that someone's ability to pay bills is not compromised or compromised," Quatlov said. Said and added the majority of applicants. CERB considers it eligible for CERB and benefits in good faith.

Financial pressure

Taylan McCrea-Yu, Strategic Director of the Canadian Students' Union, said his group is happy to support students, but the government should move forward. He said he believed it.

"The crisis in COVID and living expenses, and rising tuition fees have forced some students to choose between repayment of additional loans, basic needs, and academic success."

One of the former students who received a repayment letter from CRA in May is Joanna Clark. She first took out unemployment insurance and instead received CERB benefits. Currently, elementary school teachers are being asked to repay the $ 2,000 they don't have.

Clark said the government had not notified her of her remission order. She wants her to qualify for it.

"If that means I don't have to repay $ 2,000, it will create a world of difference."