Webinar April 17, 2020
This is presented by Meifang Zhu, CAIF legal advisor, on April 17, 2020 Webinar. You can find the presentation deck, video and the Q&A in this post.
What if the company employs contractors and not employees, is the company eligible for government support?
Your question involves two aspects of eligibility issues – employers and employees.
So far, for wage subsidy and support programs, they have residency requirements. For example, the Work-sharing program requires companies to have been operating business in Canada for at least 1 year. So, “the international nature of business” you mentioned in the question shall meet residency requirements. Otherwise, your company is unlikely to be eligible for government financial programs.
If your business operates in Canada, then we come to “contractor” issue. There is a specific test used by the CRA to determine whether you are hiring a contract or employee, including nature of work relationship, level of control, ownership of tools and equipment, opportunity of profit or risk of loss and others.
However, to put it simply for your question, the key here is whether you put “contractors” on your payroll, which means you contribute CPP and EI for them. If not, “contractors” are unlikely to qualify for these wage subsidy programs. Nevertheless, “contractors” may consider Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) as the self-employed. Besides, companies may apply for Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) since you can use the funds to cover overhead costs.
CAIF Legal Advisor
Meifang has law degrees from both China and Canada. Before coming to Canada, she obtained Bachelor of Laws from East China University of Political Science and Law (Shanghai, China). She was admitted to the Chinese Bar in 2013 and practiced as an Assistant Prosecutor in Shanghai, China, focusing on financial crimes. In October 2018, Meifang obtained her Master of Laws in International Business Law from Osgoode Hall Law School, York University (Toronto, Canada). Currently, she is an NCA candidate (National Committee on Accreditation) pursuing the Lawyer Licensing Process in Ontario. Meifang Zhu has joined the CAIF team since October 2019 as a Legal Advisor (volunteer) who assists with legal matters of the foundation.
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