The CRA Is Sending 'Nudge Letters' To People Who Got COVID-19 Benefits & Here's What They Say

Some people may get a "denial letter" in the post this week. 👇

A Canadian flag waving on a Government of Canada building.
Senior Editor

A Canadian flag waving on a Government of Canada building.

Some Canadians who received COVID-19 benefits like the CERB or the CRB are about to be contacted by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) about repayments.

On Wednesday, May 11, the federal agency announced that it would be getting in touch with people who claimed COVID-19 support benefits to ensure they were eligible to receive them.

Different types of letters have been sent, according to a notice from the CRA.

For example, some people may be about to receive a "nudge letter," which will remind them of the original eligibility criteria for the benefit they claimed.

Letters may also ask for supporting documentation for an individual's benefits application, to ensure they won't be required to return any money.

According to the CRA, others may be sent what's called a "denial letter," informing the recipient that they have been deemed ineligible for the benefit payments that they received.

In those cases, the CRA and Employment and Social Development Canada will be issuing what's called a Notice of Redetermination (CRA) or a Notice of Debt (ESDC), related to the COVID-19 individual benefits.

These documents will inform Canadians of debts or credits that have been established on their accounts.

The first of these types of letters was sent in November 2021 by Service Canada, and will continue to be issued from the CRA in the future.

A statement from the feds explains that these letters will "continue for the next few years as the government continues its eligibility reviews of the COVID-19 benefits for individuals."

It adds," The notices will provide information on repayment options."

People who do get contacted are urged to follow the directions in the letter they get "without delay."

Anybody who wants to pay can do so online or by phoning an agent to discuss settling their debts. There are options for those worried about returning the money, as the CRA notes there are options for flexible or deferred repayments.

Those in a "financially precarious position" may be able to receive additional support too, as the agency says it will consider their unique situations.

As many as 8.9 million Canadians are believed to have received CERB payments between March and October 2020, with millions more claiming CRB in the months that followed.

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

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.