OTTAWA — Minister of Finance Bill Morneau announced that as of June 19, applications will be accepted so that more small businesses can access the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA).

The changes mean owner-operated small businesses that had been ineligible for the program due to their lack of payroll, sole proprietors receiving business income directly, as well as family-owned corporations remunerating in the form of dividends rather than payroll will become eligible this week.

“We want businesses to know that we are there for them and that we are listening to their concerns,” says Morneau. “Based on the feedback we have received on the CEBA, we are pleased to make adjustments to the program and expand it so that it can help more small businesses.”

To qualify under the expanded eligibility rules, CEBA applicants with payroll lower than $20,000 will need:

  • a business operating account at a participating financial institution
  • a Canada Revenue Agency business number
  • a 2018 or 2019 tax return
  • eligible non-deferrable expenses of between $40,000 and $1.5 million

Eligible businesses will qualify for financing of up to $40,000, with 25 per cent of this being forgivable based on the current terms of CEBA loans. Businesses can contact their primary financial institution for more information or to apply directly for CEBA.

“Thank you to our members who raised this qualification barrier as a concern,” Susie Grynol, president & CEO, Hotel Association of Canada said in a statement announcing the changes to association members. “We are pleased to see a resolution for our family-run or sole-operator hotels.” Further information on the expanded eligibility is available at


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