As a highly developed nation, Canadian citizens are fortunate enough to enjoy many advantages. In Canada, you can look forward to a good standard of life, a great education system, and free healthcare. There are also amazing financial rewards. People of Canada have access to some of the best career prospects in the world. But unfortunately, not everyone can obtain highly prized jobs. In such scenarios, there is the Canadian Workers Benefit to help. In this article, we’ll look at the Canada Workers Benefit in depth.
What Is The Canada Workers Benefit (CWB)?
The CWB is essentially a refundable tax credit system to assist people on a low income. It consists of a basic payment and a disability supplement.
In the past, a person would claim the Canadian Workers Benefit after filing their income tax return. But from July 2023, an advance payment system is being introduced where the figures from the previous tax year are used to calculate eligibility and payment rates.
Canada Workers Benefit: Eligibility Criteria
Certain eligibility requirements must be met for a person to qualify for the CWB benefit. You must:
- Be aged 19 or older by the 31st of December (unless living with a partner, spouse, or child),
- Earn less than $32,245 (for a single person without children) or less than $42,198 (for a person with children or a partner),
- Live in Canada throughout the year.
Who Is Not Eligible?
You will not be eligible for the CWB under the following circumstances:
- Enrolled as a full-time student for more than 13 weeks of the year (unless you have a dependent child),
- Incarcerated in jail for more than 90 days of the year,
- Taxes are not paid in Canada, for example, because you are an officer serving another country.
The Disability Supplement
In addition to the basic payment, you could be eligible for the disability supplement if you suffer from physical or mental impairments. To be eligible, you must earn at least $1150 per year. You must also file the Disability Tax Credit Certificate (T2201) through the Canada Revenue Agency.
How To Apply for the Canada Workers Benefit
Normally the application is processed when you fill in the end-of-year tax returns. You can do this electronically or by filling in a paper application form. You will need to complete the process through the NETFILE Electronic tax system for electronic applications. Those filing their tax returns through a paper form must complete the Canada workers benefit (Schedule 6).
How To Claim The Disability Supplement
If you are single and have filed the Disability Tax Credit Certificate (T2201), you will qualify for the disability section of the benefit. If you are a couple and one person is disabled, the qualified person should apply for the disability tax credit.
If both of you are disabled, you can each apply for the disability tax credit. In a scenario where both people are disabled, only one person will be awarded the CWB basic payment.
The payments are based on a person’s (or family’s) income. The province or territory where a person lives is also taken into consideration. What you can expect for the basic and disability supplement is outlined below.
The Basic Payment
For a single person, the maximum basic payment is $1,428. You can expect to receive the maximum limit if your income is less than $23,495.
The payment will be reduced for those earning more than this amount until the maximum threshold of $33,015 is reached. For those with a partner or children (i.e., a family arrangement), you can expect a maximum payment of $2,461. This figure is for those with a net income of less than $26,805.
The payment rates are adjusted until the income level of $43,212. You will not receive the basic payment after reaching this threshold. The payment and threshold limits are the same wherever you are in Canada, except for Alberta, Nunavut, or Quebec. You can see the figures for these provinces and territories here.
The Disability Supplement Payment
For a single person, the maximum disability supplement is $737. If you earn over $33,018, the payment rates are reduced. A person who makes more than $37,932 will not receive the disability supplement. For those people with a partner or children, the maximum disability supplement is also $737. The amount is reduced if the net income exceeds $48,124. Those with a family income over $53,037 will not receive the disability supplement.
These figures vary in Alberta, Nunavut, and Quebec. You can see the amounts for these 3 parts of Canada here.
Helping The Citizens Of Canada
Though Canada is a prosperous nation, some jobs, and career pathways do not pay a great deal. To help the lower-paid citizens, the Canada Workers Benefit is there to assist. When filing tax returns, income levels are considered, and the CWB benefit is paid to eligible people.