Canada Employee Insurance Question?

I'm 17 and I decided to apply for E.I because I got layed off from my job. My earnings in the past year were very close to $5000, but I'm not completely sure if they were over. In 2019 itself I earned around $4200, but from March 2019 to March 2020 I earned very close if not more than $5000 because I worked more. A lot of the money I earned could be put for good use for university, but I'm scared that I earned around $4800 instead of $5000. I'm not really sure what to do. I also have additional earnings from math tutoring on the side that would put me over $5,000, but I got paid cash and am not sure if I can claim that. Could I request to change it to the student benefit, or will they be fine if I earned 4800 at my work and got pushed over $5,000 with the tutoring. Thanks

1 Answer

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  • 2 months ago

    You not only can, but must, declare your tutoring earnings as income on your income tax return for the year in which you earned the money. It doesn't matter how you got paid. Income is income. If you earned the tutoring money in 2019, it should have been declared on your 2019 tax return, which should have been filed by June 1, 2020. If you didn't declare that money on your tax return, you can still do that. Google 'how to amend tax return canada'. If you earned it in 2020, you don't have to put it on a tax return until next year but if you use it as a basis for applying for a benefit then there is no way to not declare as income on your 2020 return.

    If you want to apply for CERB, you may have to add up what you actually earned in the 12 months prior to your application. Clearly, you won't be applying before June 10, 2020, so that would take you back to June last year. Be careful about that figure; if it turns out later that you weren't actually entitled to it because you didn't earn enough, you'll have to pay it back.

    It isn't clear to me which benefit you should be applying for. It's my understanding that EI claims are currently all being automatically converted to CERB, but I'm not sure about that.

    It doesn't sound to me as if you have carefully read all the requirements for each benefit. Do that. They aren't that hard to understand. All you have to do is google CERB and CESB, read what you find on the government websites, and see which suits your situation best. No one can advise you without knowing all the details of your situation.

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