A large number of Canadians receiving emergency government assistance turn to debt to meet their needs when those benefits run out, a new survey suggests.
The survey, commissioned by bankruptcy firm MNP Ltd earlier this month, found that 45 per cent of respondents currently receiving benefits due to the coronavirus epidemic would take on more debt when financial aid ends.
“This is a very strange person, “said MNP President Grant Bazian in an interview.
Changing the CERB
Twenty-one percent said they use credit cards and eight percent rely on payday lenders. Nine percent said they would sell their homes.
Forty-five percent said they would cut their costs.
The survey came a few weeks before the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), It paid.46.4.4 billion from March, Is set to end.
More than 8.7 million Canadians have applied for CERB to pay their bills and feed their families in the wake of the biggest financial shock seen in decades.
Ottawa expands CERB, modifies EI, launches new utility programs
Since September, the federal government plans to convert recipients to employment insurance (EI) and also introduce new benefit programs to help those who are ill or isolated due to COVID-19, including caregivers. Canadians who are not eligible for EI.
Those benefits also have an expiration date. New programs are in place for next year.
The survey did not ask how many people are currently receiving assistance with the intention of applying for new programs, but 28 percent said they will apply for EI when their benefits are exhausted.
Experts have expressed concern about that transition, what could come next for those who cause the most harm.
In a previous Global News interview, Food Banks Canada’s Chief Network Services Officer Kirsten Bardsley said food bank use increased when the epidemic struck – but that changed when CERB was launched.
She said recent food bank usage is now comparable to previous years.
“But folks have now gone through their CERB allocation. Things like dismissal notices are back in effect. People who can defer payments now have to pay the bills,” Bardsley said.
“People were able to put their heads above the water with the CERB.
While Canada recorded a record unemployment rate earlier this year, it has seen significant job gains over the past four months. The latest figures show that Canada is 1.1 million lower than the pre-Kovid-19 levels.
Six months into the epidemic, 43 percent of those surveyed said they, or anyone in their household, were experiencing some sort of disruption or impact on their employment.
Of those, 15 percent are working fewer hours or receiving reduced pay. Fourteen percent said someone in their home had lost their job and 13 percent had lost their place personally.
Perhaps surprisingly, so far in 2020 the number of Canadians looking to file for bankruptcy or pay off their debts through consumer proposals has dropped significantly.
What should I do when CERB ends? The financial expert will weigh
Personal bankruptcy fell 45.4 percent in the second quarter of this year compared to the same period in 2019. Government statistics show.
Bajian said aid programs are a “saving grace” for many who have gone bankrupt. At the same time, he said, collection agencies and the Canada Revenue Agency have taken a somewhat softer approach.
All of this can change when things get back to normal – it could be anytime.
Bojian encouraged people to take an in-depth look at their financial affairs and get some help from loan professionals such as a licensed bankruptcy trustee if necessary.
“I do not think the problems of the people are gone నేను I think there are problems of procrastination, ”said Bajian.
The survey was conducted by Ipsos on behalf of MNP LTD between September 1-3, 2020. For this survey, a sample of 2,001 Canadians aged 18 years and older were interviewed. If all Canadian adults are polled, this poll is 19 times out of 20 plus or minus 2.5 percentage points accurate.
– Files from Rachel de Amore and The Canadian Press
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