Businesses: WSIB financial relief package

The financial relief package allows businesses to defer premium reporting and payments until August 31, 2020. Businesses who report and pay monthly, quarterly or annually based on their insurable earnings are eligible for this deferral.

Each customer reports and pays on the previous full month or quarter, for example March 31 reporting and payment obligation covers the period of February 1-29. The following payments are eligible for deferral:

  • Monthly: March 31, April 30, May 31, June 30, July 31, Aug 31
  • Quarterly: April 30, July 31
  • Annual: April 30

The relief package also applies to Schedule 2 organizations – publicly funded organizations (municipalities, hospitals, school boards), and other businesses who are involved in federally regulated industries. All payment obligations (weekly and monthly) for Schedule 2 businesses will be deferred until August, 31, 2020.

No interest will accrue on outstanding premium payments for Schedule 1 businesses and no penalties will be charged during this six-month deferral period. Schedule 2 account balances will not accrue debit interest as part of the financial relief package.   

Also, we have determined that costs associated with COVID-19 related claims will not be allocated at an employer or class level. Instead, they will be allocated on a Schedule-wide basis and there will be no change in premium rates for 2020. 

More information

The best way to manage your account is through our online services or email us at employeraccounts@wsib.on.ca. If you need urgent assistance with your account, please call us at 1-800-387-0750, Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

See our FAQs on getting in touch while our offices are closed.

FAQs

How do I apply for the financial relief package?

All businesses covered by the WSIB’s workplace insurance are automatically eligible for the financial package. No action is required from businesses to receive the financial relief.

Does my business have to participate in the financial relief package?

You do not have to participate in the financial relief package. You can continue to report and pay on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis. You can also report now and defer payment until later.

You can continue to report using our online services or contacting us at employeraccounts@wsib.on.ca.

Payment can be made online through: 

  • your online banking or financial institution 
  • credit or debit using Paymentus 

You may also still make payment via cheque to P.O. Box 4115 Station A Toronto M5W 2V3. 

Please don't mail your cheque directly to the WSIB. All businesses, including Schedule 2 organizations must include the account number on the cheque. 

How and when will businesses be required to make deferred payments if they choose to participate in the financial relief package?

We are continuing to assess the financial impact of the COVID-19 situation on Ontario businesses and how best we can support you through this difficult time. We will provide further information on next steps for businesses that participate in the financial relief package as available.

Will the WSIB continue to send account related communications as part of the relief package?

We will continue to send you premium remittance forms, monthly statements, and share account information. You can choose to continue to report and pay on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis. You can also keep reporting and defer payment until later. You can manage your account through our online services

You can also email us at employeraccounts@wsib.on.ca or if you need urgent assistance with your account, please call us at 1-800-387-0750, Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

If I choose to defer premium payments as part of the financial relief package, how will my premium rates be impacted for the remainder of the year?

We will continue to work with businesses that choose to participate in the financial relief package to determine how deferred payments will be made and how rates will be set moving forward. We are still working on some of the processes related to the package and we will provide more information as it becomes available.

Will premium rates change in 2020 to cover claims costs associated with COVID-19?

No, we do not plan to change premium rates for 2020.

If costs associated with COVID-19 are allocated on a Schedule-wide basis, can I expect my rates to increase?

We are actively responding to this rapidly evolving situation. Last week we announced a financial relief package for businesses, allowing any employer to defer premium rate payments until August 31, 2020.

I was expecting a rate decrease in 2021, will this change?

We are continuing to monitor the rapidly evolving situation as we evaluate 2021 rate-setting. In the meantime, we have announced a financial relief package worth $1.9 billion to help businesses during this time.

Will this impact the rate framework transition period?

We are continuing to monitor the rapidly evolving situation as we evaluate 2021 rate-setting. In the meantime, we have announced a financial relief package worth $1.9 billion to help businesses during this time.

Why should I have to pay for claims that I did not experience?

The COVID-19 pandemic is an unprecedented global situation. Our workplace injury and illness insurance system is based on the core principle of collective liability. We are committed to responding as the situation evolves to ensure we can maintain our system for all Ontarians.

Will clearance certificates continue to be issued to all businesses?

Most active businesses with outstanding premium, reconciliation years, and overdue balances are eligible to receive a clearance certificate. Accounts with a write-off balance or that are inactive will not receive clearance certificates. 

Should I report wages paid to employees that are on leave or working reduced hours due to the COVID-19 situation as insurable earnings?

You should continue to follow the guidelines found in our policy on determining insurable earnings and report any amounts included on a worker's earnings statement and/or income reported in box 14 of the T4 slip as gross earnings. This includes wages paid to employees who:

  • are on paid leave
  • working reduced hours but are being paid for full hours
  • returned to the workplace following a leave

As part of our financial relief package, you can defer premium reporting and payments until Aug. 31, 2020. You can continue to manage your account, including reporting and paying your premiums, through our online services.

You can also email us at employeraccounts@wsib.on.ca or call us at 1-800-387-0750, Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., for more information.

Should wages paid to employees with funds received under the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) and Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers programs, be considered when reporting and paying my WSIB premiums?

Wages paid to employees by employers receiving the CEWS and the Temporary Wage Subsidy for Employers are not being re-classified as social assistance or employment insurance benefits by the Federal government and are considered taxable earnings. 

These wages paid should be included as insurable earnings when reporting and paying your WSIB premiums. You should continue to follow the guidelines found in our policy on determining insurable earnings  and report any amounts reported on a worker’s earnings statement and/or income reported in box 14 of the T4 slip as gross earnings. 

As part of our financial relief package, you can defer premium reporting and payments until Aug. 31, 2020. You can continue to manage your account, including reporting and paying your premiums, through our online services.

You can also email us at employeraccounts@wsib.on.ca or call us at 1-800-387-0750, Monday to Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., for more information.
 

Are Supplementary Unemployment Benefits (SUB) paid to an employee considered insurable earnings and should they be reported when paying my WSIB premiums?

SUB payments to an employee are not considered insurable earnings for WSIB purposes.

A SUB plan is for a business to provide additional weekly payments to their employee's Employment Insurance (EI) benefits during a period of unemployment due to:

  • a temporary stoppage of work
  • training
  • illness, injury or quarantine

Payments from SUB plans that are registered with Service Canada are not considered earnings and are not deducted from the EI benefits an employee receives, nor are EI premiums deducted from the payment.

Do I need to report the income support received by employees as part of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) as insurable earnings?

The CERB program provides people with temporary income support if they have stopped working because of COVID-19 and the benefit is paid directly to people who apply for it.

CERB payments received by an employee are not considered insurable earnings for WSIB purposes.