A Class-Action Lawsuit Has Been Proposed Against The Feds Over CERB Repayments

It calls for all CERB repayments to be cancelled.💰
CERB Class-Action Lawsuit Has Been Proposed Against The Federal Government
Senior Editor

Confusion about eligibility has resulted in a proposed Canada Emergency Response Benefit class-action lawsuit against the federal government.

It’s been filed on behalf of retired Canadians with self-employment income who have been asked to repay the benefit, but the lawyer behind the proposal says it could ultimately include “everyone.”

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441,000 Canadians contacted about CERB repayments

Hundreds of thousands of Canadians, like the representative plaintiff behind the lawsuit, have been asked to return up to $18,000 of CERB payments.

In December, the Canada Revenue Agency contacted 441,000 individuals about repayments, following eligibility confusion related to net and gross income.

Many people who believed they were eligible for the payments have now been asked to repay, while officials have admitted that the original criteria was “unclear”.

Despite calls from leading political parties, like the NDP and the Green Party, the Liberal government has said it will not end calls for repayment.

In response, Toronto lawyer Jan Weir has launched the lawsuit on behalf of the representative plaintiff, as well as others who may have been affected by the same issue.

“If the court interprets this the way I expect that they will, it’s for everyone,” he told Global News.

The proposed class-action suit isn’t looking for financial compensation, but instead is asking the government to stop calling for repayments.

It will likely take a couple of months for the lawsuit to get certified and go any further, but the lawyer says it could encourage the CRA to “hold off” collecting CERB returns in the meantime.

Helena Hanson
Senior Editor
Helena Hanson is a Senior Editor for Narcity Media, leading the Travel and Money teams. She previously lived in Ottawa, but is now based in the U.K.