Eligible Canadians set to Receive Newly Enhanced Canada Workers Benefit
Canada begins automatic advance payments for the enhanced Canada Workers Benefit (CWB) to assist low- and medium-income individuals against inflation. Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland emphasizes the importance of a strong social safety net, especially for essential workers earning lower wages.
The CWB, a refundable tax credit indexed to inflation, provides up to $2,616 for eligible families and $1,518 for qualifying single workers. Recipients will receive three advance payments in July, October, and January, with the final payment after filing 2023 tax returns. The initiative complements other measures addressing the rising cost of living, like the national child-care plan and Canada Dental Benefit.
The Canadian government has started providing the first of three automatic advance payments to eligible recipients of the enhanced Canada Workers Benefit (CWB) without requiring them to apply.
The CWB is a refundable tax credit that supplements the incomes of over four million low- and modest-income workers in the country. The decision to rework the CWB was announced in response to the challenges posed by rising inflation rates.
Finance Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland emphasized the importance of a robust social safety net to support families and individuals, particularly those engaged in essential but lower-paying jobs. The CWB is indexed to inflation, ensuring it rises in line with the cost of living.
Under the new advance payment system, Canadians who received the CWB in 2022 will automatically receive the first payment through the Canada Revenue Agency. The subsequent payments will be made in October and January, with the final payment being disbursed after eligible workers file their 2023 tax returns.
How the advance payments work
The advance payments are not calculated as equal quarters of the total annual refund; instead, they are equivalent to the minimum entitlement for the year. This means that the payments will not decrease even if the recipient’s income decreases compared to the previous tax year.
Finance Canada stated that eligible families may receive up to $2,616 through the CWB, while qualifying single workers may receive up to $1,518.
The changes to the CWB are among several measures introduced by the government to help Canadians cope with the rising cost of essential goods and services, including the national child-care plan, the Canada Dental Benefit, the grocery rebate, and the Canada Child Benefit.
Critics, such as Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre, have blamed the Liberal government and the New Democrats for the increasing cost of living, citing significant rent and mortgage payment increases, as well as a rise in food prices.