The government is trying to help working poor Canadians. But the way it’s going about it is flawed.The Canada Workers Benefit – introduced in 2007 as the Workers Income Tax Credit – tops up the earnings of four million working low-income Canadians. Starting Friday, CRA will automatically deliver the first of three advance payments without application.
While $7 lattes aren’t getting any cheaper for low to modest-income households, there is good news: thanks to new government changes, millions of Canadian workers will soon be receiving their first automatic advance payments of the Canada Workers Benefit CWB. In 2023-24, the Canada Workers Benefit will deliver up to $1,428 for single individuals and $2,461 for families to help supplement lower incomes. This will be split into three advance payments in July, October, and January, with no need to apply or file a tax return.
The CWB is a new, enhanced version of the former Working Income Tax Benefit (WITB). It’s designed to reduce the disincentive for individuals on income supports to re-enter the labor market, and it’s intended to help mitigate losses from income support cuts. For 2023-24, the maximum basic CWB amount for individuals is $1,428, and it starts decreasing as your income rises. The maximum family CWB is $2,461, which starts to decrease as your income rises. The maximum CWB amounts also vary by province and territory.
Employee benefits are important to keep your team happy and productive and attract and retain talent in a competitive hiring marketplace. While mandatory employee benefits include pensions, legislated and parental leaves, PTO, employment insurance, and eye exams, supplementary benefits are becoming increasingly expected by employees.
How to Qualify?
Eligibility is based on whether you are 19 years old or older as at December 31st and are earning taxable income below the provincial/territorial base amount. You must also pay taxes, and your family’s net income must be below a certain amount. The CWB includes a basic amount and a disability supplement. The amounts vary by province and territory, with calculations different for Alberta, Quebec, and Nunavut. You enter your CWB information on line 45300 of your tax return, and it is added to your net tax payable.
If you have a child with an eligible disability, you may qualify for the CWB Disability Supplement, which is paid on top of the basic CWB amount. The CWB Disability Supplement gradually reduces as your adjusted family net income rises. The basic CWB amount is $1,395 for single individuals and $2,461 for families. The maximum basic CWB for Alberta, Quebec, and Nunavut residents is higher. If you qualify, claiming it is easy. You can claim the CWB when you file your income tax return using either the online filing options in TurboTax or CRA’s Child and Family Benefits Calculator.
How to Apply for the Canada Workers Benefit?
Canada is a highly developed country with many opportunities, including access to free healthcare and a robust education system. However, despite our nation’s wealth, some citizens have trouble making ends meet due to low incomes and a tough job market. The government is taking steps to help them out. The new Canada Workers Benefit, formerly known as the Working Income Tax Credit, offers a basic payment and disability supplement to low-income Canadians. Starting this week, the first advance payments will be delivered to eligible individuals, bringing more money into their pockets to help them pay for basic necessities.
You can apply for CWB by filling out Form T220A and filing it with your tax return. You can do this by logging into your myCRA account or by visiting any Canada Revenue Agency office. Alternatively, you can hire a professional to file your taxes for you. The team at Wealthsimple Tax has a proven track record of helping Canadians save time, reduce stress, and get their taxes done right. Click here to see how we can help you!