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If you claimed any of the federal government’s COVID-19 benefits in 2020, you could qualify for Canada’s temporary tax relief this year.

Announced in February, the targeted interest relief gives eligible Canadians an interest-free year to return any debt related to the COVID-19 benefits claimed.

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To be eligible, individuals must have had a total taxable income of $75,000 or less in 2020 and have received income support in the same year via a federal benefit.

This includes the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) and the three new recovery benefits, in addition to Employment Insurance benefits and similar provincial emergency benefits.

The Canada Revenue Agency will automatically apply the interest relief measure for people who meet the criteria, although you must file your 2020 income tax return to qualify. Eligible individuals will not have to pay any interest on outstanding income tax debt until April 30, 2022.

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