RESPWhen global economies began shutting down earlier this year due to Covid-19, the focus of governments initially was on employers and their employees and how they were being impacted.  As the pandemic progressed and it became clear that this crisis was going to be with us for long into the summer, the focus shifted to include the impact on students.  As students were finishing up their winter semesters, it was clear that many students would not be able to secure or maintain their jobs for the summer. 


The Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) will provide a benefit to qualifying students of $1,250 for a four-week period from May 10 to August 29, 2020.  The designated online portal started accepting applications on May 15, 2020.

According to the CRA website, the benefit is available to students who:

  • did not apply, receive, nor qualify, for the CERB or EI benefits for the same eligibility period. 
  • are a Canadian citizen, registered Indian, permanent resident, or protected person.
  • are studying in Canada or abroad.
  • satisfy at least one of the following:
    • completed or expect to complete high school, or received, or expect to receive high school equivalency in 2020, and have applied for a post-secondary educational program that starts before February 1, 2021.
    • completed or ended post-secondary studies in December 2019 or later; or,
    • enrolled in a recognized post-secondary educational program (at least 12 weeks in duration) that leads to a degree, diploma or certificate.
  • satisfy at least one of the following:
    • are unable to work due to COVID-19.
    • are looking for, but cannot find work due to COVID-19.
    • are currently working during the COVID-19 pandemic, but whose income from employment and self employment has been $1,000 or less (before taxes) during the 4-week period being applied for.


The CESB will be $2,000 for students who satisfy all of the above conditions and at least one of the following:

  • the student has an impairment, including a physical, mental, intellectual, cognitive, learning, communication or sensory impairment—or a functional limitation—whether permanent or episodic in nature, or evident or not, that, in interaction with a barrier, hinders a person’s full and equal participation in society;
  • the student has a child (adopted child, stepchild, or foster child) who is under 12 years old and is completely dependent on the student, student’s spouse, or common-law partner for support, care, and upbringing.
  •  the student has a dependent with a disability who is completely dependent on the student, student’s spouse, or common-law partner for support, care, and upbringing.


Students must meet the above conditions for each four-week period being applied for. More information is available here:


Additional support is available to post-secondary students through:

  •  a six-month interest-free moratorium on the repayment of Canada Student Loans.
  •  changes to the Canada Summer Jobs program.
  •  funding for 76,000 new jobs for industries needing support and front-line workers.
  •  $291 million in additional grants for graduate students; and
  •  the Canada Student Service Grant (CSSG) which will provide up to $5,000 for a volunteer student’s education in the fall.


Be Well Advised.


Sign-up for our Newsletter

Submit your email to receive more content like this straight to your inbox.