COVID-19: FAQ for Individuals

This page presents answers to the most frequently asked questions we have received in relation to the COVID-19 crisis. We hope they give you the information you need.

For information about important deadlines you need to meet to fulfill your tax obligations, see COVID-19 Summary Table: Deadlines for Individuals.

For information about COVID-19 relief measures, see Relief Measures for Individuals and Businesses.

Incentive Program to Retain Essential Workers (IPREW)

Am I eligible for the IPREW?

To be eligible under the program, you must meet all of the following conditions:

  • You work part-time or full-time in one of the essential service sectors during the program period.
  • You earn eligible work income of $550 or less per week (self-employment income is not eligible).
  • You earn at least $5,000 in eligible employment income for 2020 (self-employment income is not eligible).
  • You have a total annual income of no more than $28,600 for 2020 (not counting assistance received under the IPREW and your spouse's income).
  • You are at least 15 years old or turn 15 in at least one week covered by the IPREW (if you turn 15 between March 15 and July 4, 2020, you are eligible for the IPREW only as of the week you turn 15);
  • You were resident in Québec on December 31, 2019, and plan to reside in Québec throughout 2020.

Salary adjustments, bonuses and assistance that may affect IPREW eligibility

Salary adjustment: Minimum wage increase effective May 1, 2020

The minimum wage increased from $12.50/hour to $13.10/hour, effective May 1, 2020. If your eligible employment income is still $550 or less per week despite the new minimum wage, you remain eligible for the IPREW provided you meet all of the other conditions. However, if the new minimum wage pushes your eligible employment income over $550 for a given week, you are not eligible for the IPREW for that week.

Emergency childcare educators and support staff

You can receive IPREW benefits if you worked in an emergency childcare service that remained open during the stay-at-home order, provided you meet all other eligility requirements. In addition, you can receive IPREW benefits for all weeks in the program period, even for weeks during which the childcare service is no longer considered an emergency service after your region's stay-at-home order is lifted.

However, if you did not work in an emergency childcare service that remained open during the stay-at-home order, you are not covered by the IPREW for work done in an emergency childcare service after your region's stay-at-home order is lifted.

Employer bonuses

If you receive a bonus from your employer and your eligible employment income, including this bonus, is no more than $550 per week, you are still eligible for the IPREW, provided you meet the other conditions.

Bonus for farm workers

If you are a farm worker who receives a bonus of $100 per week from the Québec government, do not include it in your employment income. However, you must include it in your total income.

Programs and assistance

If you receive amounts under the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), the Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) or the temporary aid for workers program for a week included in the period from March 15 to July 4, 2020, you are not eligible for the IPREW for that week.

Note that you are still eligible for the IPREW even if your employer receives assistance under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy.

Retirement income 

When you apply for the IPREW, be sure to include your retirement income (if you receive any) when calculating your total annual income.

How can I apply for the new assistance available to essential workers?Updated

Beginning May 19, 2020, you can apply for the IPREW in My Account for individuals and use the online service to manage your IPREW information as well as view and modify your benefits applications.

If you are unable to register for My Account for individuals, you can still apply for IPREW benefits online. However, you must register with My Account for individuals in order to use the online service for managing your IPREW information.

Note that you must also be registered for direct deposit to receive your payments as quickly as possible.If you are not registered for direct deposit, you will receive the total amount you are eligible for in a single cheque at the end of the 16-week program period. If you apply after the 16-week program period, we will issue the cheque once your application is processed.

How much can I receive under the IPREW and when will payments be made?Updated

Under the IPREW, eligible workers may receive up to $1,600 in addition to their regular salary or wages.

The program pays $100 each week for up to 16 weeks of eligible work, retroactive to March 15, 2020. If you apply between May 19 and 22, 2020, the first payment will be made between May 27 and 29. Payments will then be made every two weeks.

For example, an essential worker who applies for the program between May 19 and 22, 2020, and who has been working since  March 15, 2020 and intends to continue working for at least 16 weeks will receive $1,600, paid as follows:

  • Between May 27 and 29: $1,000 for the period from March 15 to May 23
  • June 10: $200 for the period from May 24 to June 6
  • June 23: $200 for the period from June 7 to June 20
  • July 8: $200 for the period from June 21 to July 4
What if my wages change during the year and my total annual income ends up being more than the maximum eligible amount?

Revenu Québec will make adjustments as needed when processing income tax returns for 2020, including recovering any overpayments that were made.

If, at the end of the year, your total annual income is more than the maximum eligible amount, contact Revenu Québec. If you were eligible when you applied for assistance, Revenu Québec will recover only the amount that was overpaid to you, penalty-free.

Penalty
In the case of fraudulent claims, Revenu Québec can recover any financial assistance granted and apply a penalty equal to 50% of the amounts paid.

Income tax return

What is the deadline for filing my income tax return?

The deadline for filing your income tax return for 2019 has been extended to June 1, 2020.

What is the deadline for paying an income tax balance for 2019?

For individuals and individuals in business, the deadline for paying an income tax balance for 2019 has been extended to September 1, 2020.

Note
If you received a notice of assessment for the 2019 taxation year showing that you have until April 30, 2020, to pay the balance due, note that this information is no longer up to date. You now have until September 1, 2020, to pay the balance.
What's happening with instalment payments?

If you are required to make instalment payments, the June 15 payment can be made as late as September 1, 2020.

Should I wait to file my income tax return?

If you expect to receive a refund, you should file your return right away to get it as soon as possible.

I have already filed my income tax return. Will it be processed? If so, how long will it take?New

Yes. Revenu Québec is continuing to process income tax returns. Although the time it takes can vary, we aim to process your return within 14 working days if it is filed online. 

You can track the status of your return in My Account for individuals or using the Refund Info-Line service.

Please note that we are prioritizing personal income tax returns involving a refund.

Will I be charged a late-filing penalty if I can't file my income tax return by June 1, even if income tax balances are not due before September 1, 2020?New

Since the deadline for paying an income tax balance has been postponed to September 1, 2020, you will not be charged a late-filing penalty if you file your income tax return by September 1, 2020. However, you should still file your income tax return promptly to receive the amounts you are entitled to.

Tax credits and social programs

My daycare is closed, but I'm still getting advance payments of the tax credit for childcare expenses. What do I do?

You have three options:

  1. Reduce the number of days. You will receive smaller advance payments for the rest of the year.
  2. Stop the payments. When your daycare reopens, you can apply to have your advance payments resume.
  3. Do nothing. Your advance payments will continue unchanged, but you will have to pay back any overpayment you received when you file your income tax return in spring 2021.

See the example below. 

  • Your initial application concerned only one child for a period of 52 weeks.
  • Your childcare service is closed for 7 weeks (from March 16, 2020, to May 1, 2020).
  • You receive payments of $450 per month. 

If you choose option 1 (reduce the number of days), your payments for the rest of the year will be reduced until the end of the year. If this change takes effect on April 15, 2020, your monthly payments will therefore decrease, as of May 1, 2020, by roughly $300 per month until December.

If you choose option 3 (do nothing), you will have to repay the excess amounts you received during the year (approximately $700) when you file your 2020 income tax return in spring 2021. 

Please use My account for individuals to make your changes. To register or log in, see My Account for individuals.

Note
Since we are currently operating with reduced staff, we cannot make these changes over the phone.
I receive advance payments of the tax credit for home-support services for seniors but did not file my application to renew the payments by the deadline. Since I'm self-isolating, how can I continue to receive advance payments?

If your application to renew advance payments of the tax credit for home-support services for seniors was due March 17, 2020, or later, Revenu Québec is giving you extra time to file your application. We are following the health crisis closely and will determine a new deadline at a later date.

You will continue to receive your advance payments in the meantime. If your application period expired and you are unable to send us your renewal information, we will use the information from last year's application to ensure you continue to receive payments.

If you already have all the documents you normally need to renew your application and can easily send them to us, please do so.

Note that if we learn that you are no longer eligible for advance payments, we will take action accordingly.

I receive payments under the shelter allowance program. Should I be worried that I have to renew my payments in the next few months?

No. To make things easier for you in the short- and medium-term, you have an additional two months to file your renewal application.

You now have until December 1, 2020, to file your application with Revenu Québec.

I've lost my job. What will happen to my advance payments of the work premium?

It depends on your situation:

  • If you have lost your job permanently, contact Revenu Québec to have your payments stopped. If they are not, you will have to repay the overpayments to Revenu Québec when you file your 2020 income tax return.
  • If you have lost your job temporarily (3 or more weeks), you have two options:
    • Do nothing. Your advance payments will continue, but you will have to repay the overpayments to Revenu Québec when you file your 2020 income tax return.
    • Contact Revenu Québec to have your payments stopped.
Is Revenu Québec still making solidarity tax credit payments?Updated

Yes. In accordance with the law, Revenu Québec will pay the solidarity tax credit on the usual dates. For individuals who are unable to file their 2019 income tax return on time, the solidarity tax credit will be calculated using their 2018 income tax return and the information in Revenu Québec's files. The individuals in question will continue to receive payments until September 2020, unless Revenu Québec determines that they are no longer entitled to them.

Will my solidarity tax credit payments still be used to repay my debts?

Beginning in May 2020, payments of the solidarity tax credit will generally no longer be used to repay debts. This measure is temporary. An end date will be determined over the next few months based on how the current situation evolves. Note that this measure does not apply to support debts.

Employment expenses related to teleworking

As a salaried employee, can I deduct certain employment expenses related to teleworking during the COVID-19 pandemic?

Yes. As long as your employer does not reimburse you for them, you can deduct:

  • expenses related to supplies used for your work, such as:
    • paper, pencils and ink cartridges,
    • Internet fees, provided they are billed according to your use;
  • some expenses related to a home office space where you carry out your employment activities over 50% of the time (which should be the case in the current context).

    These expenses include: 
    • some expenses related to supplies used directly for your employment activities in a home office space in a dwelling you own (heating, electricity, cleaning products, lighting accessories and minor repairs).

      Note that you cannot deduct an amount for the rental value of your home workspace.
  • Some expenses related to a home office space in a dwelling you rent, including:
    • expenses related to supplies used directly in your home office space for employment activities (heating, electricity, cleaning products, lighting accessories and minor repairs),
    • a reasonable part of your rent related to the home office space.

Whether you own or rent the dwelling where your home office space is, you must use a reasonable basis for calculating office space expenses. For example, you could use the proportion of the office space's surface area versus your home's total surface area.

You must also take other possible uses of the home office space into account, such as your personal or business use of the space, or its use for other employment.

For example, if the office space accounts for 25% of your home's total surface area and you use the office space 80% of the time for employment activities, you can deduct the following:

  • 20% (25% x 80%) of supplies used in the office space, and
  • 20% of your rent (if you rent your home).

If the office space is used for employment activities 100% of the time, you can use only its surface area to determine the portion of expenses to deduct (25% in the example given above). This percentage applies to both the supplies used for employment activities and, if you rent your home, the amount of rent you can deduct.

See the table below for an overview of the rules for each type of expense.

Supplies you use directly for employment activities

Eligible amounts related to an office space in a home you own

Eligible amounts related to an office space in a home you rent

Yes (paper, pencils, ink cartridges, etc.)

Yes (Internet fees if they are billed according to use)

Yes, for supplies used (heating, electricity, cleaning products, lighting accessories and minor repairs)

No (the workspace's rental value)

Yes, for supplies used (heating, electricity, cleaning products, lighting accessories and minor repairs)

Yes (a reasonable portion of the rent related to the home office space)

When will I be able to deduct my employment expenses related to teleworking during the COVID-19 pandemic?

You will be able to deduct these employment expenses in your 2020 income tax return.

How will I be able to deduct employment expenses related to teleworking during the COVID-19 pandemic?

To deduct these employment expenses, you will have to file the following forms with your income tax return:

  • form TP-64.3-V, General Employment Conditions (duly completed by your employer);
  • form TP-59-V, Employment Expenses of Salaried Employees and Employees Who Earn Commissions, or a detailed statement of your expenses.
Can my employer sign form TP-64.3-V, General Employment Conditions, electronically?

As a relief measure during the health crises, Revenu Québec will allow employers to complete and sign form TP-64.3-V electronically and email a copy to the employee.

Revenu Québec will except the following types of electronic signatures:

  • a digital certificate (for example, a digital certificate produced using a specialized tool);
  • a scanned hand-written signature (meaning an image of a signature);
  • a signature made using an input tool such as a stylus or mouse.

Electronic signatures

Can I sign form MR-69-V electronically?

Yes, until September 1, 2020. However, the signature must meet the general requirements of specialized tools.

What types of electronic signatures will Revenu Québec accept?

We will accept the following types of electronic signatures:

  • a digital certificate (for example, a digital certificate produced using a specialized tool);
  • a scanned hand-written signature (meaning an image of a signature);
  • a signature made using an input tool such as a stylus or mouse.
How should I authorize my tax preparer to file my income tax return online if I do not have Internet access, I am not comfortable using an electronic signature or I am a senior in self-isolation?

If you are unable to sign form TP-1000.TE-V, Online Filing of the Personal Income Tax Return by an Accredited Person, electronically, your preparer can still file your income tax return online with your consent. Note that we may later require you to sign the form.

This only applies to form TP-1000.TE-V.

Recovery of tax debts

What if I have a tax debt or Revenu Québec is garnishing my bank account?

We notified financial institutions that Revenu Québec has granted a release of garnishments on current bank accounts for tax debt so that everyone can get the government assistance they are entitled to (such as the federal Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) or Québec's Incentive Program to Retain Essential Workers (IPREW)). If amounts are still being seized from your account, contact your financial institution. If they are unable to address all of your concerns, you can call us at 1 866 832-6816.

Note that garnishments that cover investment accounts (including RRSPs) will not be not released unless the garnishment covers bank accounts and investment accounts simultaneously. In addition, if legal proceedings were started to liquidate investment accounts, the garnishment on these accounts will be maintained. For information specific to your situation, call us at 1 866 832-6816.

Data security

How can I protect myself from scammers who are using the COVID-19 crisis for phishing and identity theft?

Scammers are taking advantage of the current COVID-19 crisis to contact you in various ways to obtain personal information.

The phishing fraud technique is used by ill-intentioned people who send mass emails or texts that seem to come from a known organization or business. The fraudulent emails or texts encourage you to click on links or to open attachments, allowing the scammers to steal your personal information. Phishing may also involve installing malicious software on your electronic devices, such as your computer, laptop, tablet or cellphone.

Typical examples of emails or texts that may be sent during the current COVID-19 crisis are:

  • “If you'd like the latest COVID-19 pandemic update, click here.”
  • “To receive the COVID-19 related benefit, click here.”

Be on your guard, as the consequences of responding to a fraudulent message can be significant, ranging from unauthorized use of your confidential information to theft of your information or identity. The access or theft is used to commit fraud.

To learn more about protecting yourself against these scams, see Data Security. Remember to always use caution online.

What should I do in case of fraud or identity theft?

If you believe that you have been the victim of identity theft or a scam, contact us so that we can put additional measures in place to protect your personal information.

For more information about what to do if you have been scammed or your identity has been stolen, see Identity Theft in Brief! on the Commission d'accès à l'information du Québec website.

Others

If I need to get in touch with you, can I go to one of your offices?

Most of our offices are closed indefinitely to help government-wide efforts to prevent the coronavirus from spreading and protect the health and safety of our clients and employees.

As of Wednesday, April 1, 2020, the following offices will be open:

  • Laval (5, Place-Laval, bureau 147)
  • Longueuil (825, rue Saint-Laurent Ouest)
  • Montréal-Est (Village olympique, pyramide Est, bureau 4000, 5199, rue Sherbrooke Est)
  • Montréal-Ouest (3300, boulevard de la Côte-Vertu, 2e étage, Saint-Laurent)
  • Québec City (3800, rue de Marly, Québec)

Business hours are from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday to Friday. Note that we have indefinitely suspended all individual appointments. To protect the health and safety of our clients and employees, security personnel will be onsite to manage access and ensure that visitors comply with social distancing and infection control guidelines.

We recommend that you use our online services in My Account for individuals or My Account for businesses. If necessary, you can send us secure email or call our client services toll-free at one of the following numbers:

Individuals: 1 800 267-6299
Businesses: 1 800 567-4692
Solidarity tax credit and advance payments: 1 855 291-6467

What can I do in My Account for individuals?

You can use My Account for individuals to do a number of things, such as change the information for your advance payments of the tax credit for childcare expenses or view your notices of assessment.

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