The federal government is extending several coronavirus pandemic aid measures as the pandemic rages on.
During the economic and fiscal update on Tuesday, the government announced it’s extending the simplified rules for deducting home office expenses and increasing the temporary flat rate from $400 to $500 annually. In 2020, the government set out a temporary flat-rate method to allow workers to calculate their deduction for home office expenses. The new rules, which come as many Canadians continue to work from home for all or part of their jobs, will apply to the 2021 and 2022 tax years.
Additionally, the government is extending the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit and the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit until May 7, 2022. It’s also extending the caregiving benefit from 42 weeks to 44 weeks and the sickness benefit from four weeks to six weeks. Legislation allows for additional extensions of both benefits until July 2, 2022, if required.
And the government also announced it’s setting aside $742.4 million to help about 200,000 low-income seniors recoup drops in the value of their guaranteed income supplement payments after they received emergency aid last year. The payments aren’t expected to go out until next May.