Incentive Program to Retain Essential Workers (IPREW)

The Incentive Program to Retain Essential Workers (IPREW) seeks to offset the difference between the wages of essential workers and the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). Eligible workers can apply online for the assistance starting from May 19, 2020.

To obtain additional information on the program and the application process, consult the page devoted to the program on the Revenu Québec website. This hyperlink will open in a new window.

Frequently asked questions concerning the program are also available in the FAQ for Individuals section on the Revenu Québec website This hyperlink will open in a new window..

Financial assistance

On March 25, the federal government announced the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), which provides $2 000 per month for workers who are the victims of the COVID-19 pandemic.

All Canadians who are unable to work because of COVID-19 are entitled to the benefit whether or not they are eligible for employment insurance, in particular those who have lost income because:

  • of COVID-19, including those who still have a job but are no longer receiving income because of COVID-19-related work interruptions;
  • they are sick or in quarantine;   
  • they must stay home to take care of a child or someone suffering from the virus.    

To apply for the CERB, you must register on the federal government website. This hyperlink will open in a new window. 

While you await a response from either of the federal programs, it is possible to apply for last-resort financial assistance.

Temporary financial assistance for workers (PATT)

The PATT was going to end when other financial assistance programs covering the same needs were introduced. The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) offered by the federal government meets peoples’ needs, which is why the PATT is no longer necessary.

All applications submitted before 4:00 p.m. on April 10 will be processed in accordance with the current procedure.

Yes. All applications for assistance received up until the program ends will be processed in a timely manner. Applicants will be notified of the decision regarding their application and the reason it has been refused, if such is the case.

You can submit an application for administrative reconsideration within 30 days from the date you were notified of the decision regarding the PATT. Every application for administrative reconsideration received within the prescribed time period will be processed. 

No. You must apply for the CERB at the following address: This hyperlink will open in a new window..

For answers to common questions about the CERB, call the automated help line at 1-833-966-2099. To speak with an agent about the CERB or your Canada Revenue Agency account, call 1-800-959-7383.

Yes, provided you meet the eligibility requirements for the CERB.

Applications that are on hold pending a decision regarding Employment Insurance will not be processed until April 20, 2020. If you do not contact the Red Cross before that date, it will inform you of the status of your application in the following days.

The objective has always been to reply within 48 hours. Note that when the program was launched, given the high number of applications received in a short time, this objective could not be met. But measures have been taken since then and we are now meeting our commitments.

Filing income tax returns