Tax Measures Under Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

Measures for business

  • Businesses will benefit from interest and penalty relief[135] in relation to filing and making payments for the majority of provincially administered taxes. This relief period has been extended from August 31, 2020, to October 1, 2020. Outstanding returns and taxes that were due between April 1, 2020 and August 31, 2020 are now due by October 1, 2020. Beginning October 2, 2020, regular filing and payment activities will resume, and regular penalties and interest will apply.
  • Upcoming June 30 quarterly municipal remittance of education property tax to school boards is deferred by 90 days.
  • Employers may defer payments to the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (“WSIB”) for up to six months.
  • The Employer Health Tax[136] (“EHT”) exemption will be increased from $490,000 to $1 million. It has been announced in the November 2020 budget that this measure is now adopted permanently.
  • The Regional Opportunities Investment Tax Credit provides a 10% refundable tax credit for capital investments in regional development. This tax credit can be claimed upon completing the annual tax return.
    • Eligible corporations are Canadian-controlled private corporations that make qualifying investments in capital property that become available for use in certain regions of Ontario on or after March 25, 2020.
    • Eligible capital property is “available for use” in the taxation year in which a taxpayer can begin claiming capital cost allowance for depreciable property under the ITA.
    • Qualifying investments include expenditures for building, renovating or acquiring eligible commercial and industrial buildings and other property. More specifically, eligible investments are eligible expenditures in respect of Class 1 and Class 6 capital property for the purpose of calculating capital cost allowance.
    • The credit applies to expenses over $50,000, up to a maximum of $500,000.


Measures for individuals

  • Upcoming June 30 quarterly municipal remittance of education property tax to school boards is deferred by 90 days.
  • Ontario is doubling its monthly Ontario Guaranteed Annual Income System (“GAINS”) payments to seniors, to a maximum of $166 per month for individuals and $332 per month for couples. This measure begins on April 24, 2020, and continues automatically for six months.
  • The Province provided a one-time payment of $200 per child up to 12 years of age, and $250 for those with special needs, including kids enrolled in private schools.
  • Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) recipients can get additional funding[138] for COVID-19-related expenses by contacting their local Ontario Works or ODSP office. Funding for COVID-19-related expenses is the same for both programs: up to $100 for single individuals and up to $200 for families.

On November 5, 2020, the Ontario Finance Minister delivered the province’s 2020 Budget[139], which includes the following temporary tax relief:

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