New Rent Relief Program Announced to Replace CECRA

Some good news for commercial tenants: the red tape which plagued the Canadian Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program has been reduced in favor of an easy-to-access application process that replaces the system of numerous prescribed documents required under CECRA.

On October 9, the Federal Government announced details regarding relief to commercial tenants who have experienced reduced revenues due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This new program will become the successor to the CECRA program originally announced in May of this year and officially now concluded as of September 30, 2020.

In its place, the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS) will pick up where CECRA left off until June 2021 and is advertised as a much-improved program.

CERS will operate by allowing the tenant to apply for the subsidy rather than the process within CECRA which required the landlord to seek assistance. Much of the details regarding CERS are yet to be seen as the program will be implemented via soon-to-be released legislation. However, at this time we do know that:

  • CERS will offer assistance on a sliding-scale basis up to a maximum of sixty-five percent (65%) of eligible expenses;
  • These eligible expenses thus far include fixed costs such as rent and interest for commercial mortgages; and
  • businesses which were forced to temporarily shut down by a mandatory public heath order will be eligible for a further twenty-five percent (25%) subsidy beyond the aforementioned 65%.

The above parameters will operate until December 19, 2020 following which adapted parameters will likely follow in 2021. Stay tuned to our blog for further updates regarding the CERS Program.

For questions regarding the CERS program or other legal assistance regarding your lease please contact us:

Jennifer M. Williams, Shareholder
jmwilliams@owenbird.com
(604) 691-7512

Tony R. Anderson
tanderson@owenbird.com
(604) 691-7528

Lucky D. Johal
ljohal@owenbird.com
(604) 691-7541

Categories: Commercial Real Estate, COVID-19, Real Estate