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Many dental practices have been impacted financially due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The federal government has three key financial support programs in place that may be available to your dental practice. There are also three support programs that can directly support an individual.

Support for Dental Practices

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS)

The CEWS is a wage subsidy available from March 15, 2020 to December 19, 2020 (with a likely extension to June 2021). A portion of your employee's wages may be covered by this subsidy if your dental practice experienced a revenue decline when comparing your current month's revenue to its prior reference period. The amount of your subsidy will vary on the claim period and the percentage of your revenue decline among other factors.

For more information please visit: CEWS Overview and CRA - CEWS

Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy (CERS)

The CERS is available to dental practices that experience a revenue decline in October, November or December 2020 as compared to a prior reference period (the same month year over year or the average of January and February 2020). The CERS program is likely to be extended to June 2021 and includes lease expenses or expenses associated with property ownership. There are two parts to this subsidy.

A base subsidy of up to 65% of qualifying expenses to maximum subsidy of $48,750 per qualifying property per claim period ($195,000 subsidy maximum for affiliated groups).

Lockdown subsidy of up to 25% of the qualifying expenses to a limit of $18,750 per qualifying property per claim period may be available if your dental practice is subject to a public health order that requires you to cease some or all activities in any week from September 27 onward.

For more information please visit: CERS Overview and CRA - CERS

Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA)

A loan up to $60,000 (previously $40,000) may be available to fund certain non-deferrable operating expenses for your dental practice. The loan is interest free up to December 31, 2022 with no principal payments required. If the outstanding principal, other than the amount of potential debt forgiveness, is repaid by December 31, 2022, then the remaining principal amount will be forgiven, provided that no default under the loan has occurred. Debt-forgiveness available on a $60,000 loan is $20,000.

If the loan balance is not repaid by December 31, 2022, then the loan is converted into a term loan with a 5% interest rate and due December 31, 2025. No principal payments are due during the term of the loan; however, the full balance is due on December 31, 2025.

For more information please visit: CEBA Overview and Government Overview - CEBA

Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP)

On January 26, 2021 the Federal government released details for the Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP). If you are a Canadian business that needs additional cash flow to cover operational costs, you may be eligible for the HASCAP Guarantee through your financial institution.


HASCAP is available to businesses across the country, in all sectors, that have been hit hard by the pandemic. This includes restaurants, businesses in the tourism and hospitality sectors, and those that rely on in-person service. To be eligible for HASCAP, businesses need to show a year-over-year revenue decline of at least 50% in three months, within the eight months prior to their application. They must also be able to show their financial institutions that they have previously applied for either the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy or the Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy. Your primary financial institution will determine whether you qualify for this program, based on the eligibility criteria established by the Government of Canada.

How to Apply

Contact your primary financial institution to find out more. Important: You can apply at one financial institution only.

For more information, including Frequently Asked Questions, please visit: HASCAP Overview

Support for Dental Office Employees

Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB)

As announced by the government, a benefit of up to $500 per week for up to 26 weeks, is available to workers who are self-employed or are not eligible for EI and who still require income support. This benefit is to support Canadians who have not returned to work due to COVID-19 or whose income has dropped by at least 50%. These workers must be available and looking for work and must accept work where it is reasonable to do so.

For more information, please visit Government Overview- CRB

Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB)

As announced by the government, a benefit of $500 per week for up to two weeks, for workers who are sick or must self-isolate for reasons related to COVID-19.

For more information, please visit Government Overview - CRSB

Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB)

As announced by the government, a benefit of $500 per week for up to 26 weeks per household, for eligible Canadians unable to work because they must care for a child under the age of 12 or family member because schools, day-cares or care facilities are closed due to COVID-19 or because the child or family member is sick and/or required to quarantine.

For more information, please visit Government Overview - CRCB

Need help? The Canadian Dental Association's Help Desk is available to dentists and dental office employees across Canada to provide guidance on how to navigate and access federal government support programs. Please call toll-free 1-866-232-0385, Mon-Fri, from 7:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. EDT. This information does not replace professional legal or accounting advice. To find the best approach to meet specific needs, individuals are encouraged to consult a lawyer, accountant or banker.

Last updated: January 26, 2021