Government of Canada / Gouvernement du Canada
Symbol of the Government of Canada

Search

Rental Housing Benefit Act (S.C. 2022, c. 14, s. 3)

Act current to 2024-02-06

Rental Housing Benefit Act

S.C. 2022, c. 14, s. 3

Assented to 2022-11-17

An Act respecting benefits in relation to rental housing

[Enacted by section 3 of chapter 14 of the Statutes of Canada, 2022, in force on assent November 17, 2022.]

His Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate and House of Commons of Canada, enacts as follows:

Short Title

Marginal note:Short title

 This Act may be cited as the Rental Housing Benefit Act.

Interpretation

Marginal note:Definitions

  •  (1) The following definitions apply in this Act.

    Agency

    Agency means the Canada Revenue Agency. (Agence)

    cohabiting spouse or common-law partner

    cohabiting spouse or common-law partner has the same meaning as in section 122.6 of the Income Tax Act. (époux ou conjoint de fait visé)

    Commissioner

    Commissioner has the same meaning as in section 2 of the Canada Revenue Agency Act. (commissaire)

    Corporation

    Corporation means the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. (Société)

    His Majesty

    His Majesty means His Majesty in right of Canada. (Sa Majesté)

    Minister

    Minister means the member of the King’s Privy Council for Canada designated as Minister for the purposes of the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation Act. (ministre)

    reference day

    reference day means the later of December 1, 2022 and the day on which this Act comes into force. (date de référence)

    rent

    rent means a payment made under a lease, licence or similar arrangement to occupy a principal residence, including any part of the payment that is allocated to pay for utilities or property taxes. It does not include any such payment, or part of any such payment,

    • (a) that is paid in respect of utilities or property taxes to a person or entity who is not a party to the lease, licence or arrangement;

    • (b) that is to be deducted from income from business under the Income Tax Act;

    • (c) that is specified and that is allocated to pay for board or other services;

    • (d) that is paid by a person to a related person, within the meaning of paragraph 251(2)(a) and subsection 251(6) of the Income Tax Act, and that is not income of the related person for the purposes of that Act; or

    • (e) that is paid with respect to a capital lease. (loyer)

  • Marginal note:Spouse or common-law partner living separate and apart

    (2) For the purposes of this Act, a person is not considered to be living separate and apart from their spouse or common-law partner at any time unless they are living separate and apart at that time, because of a breakdown of their marriage or common-law partnership, for a period of at least 90 days that includes that time.

  • Marginal note:Definition of adjusted income

    (3) In section 4, adjusted income has the same meaning as in section 122.6 of the Income Tax Act, except that the reference to “at the end of the year” is to be read as a reference to “on the reference day”.

Rental Housing Benefit

Marginal note:Payment of benefit

 The Minister must pay a one-time rental housing benefit of $500 to a person who is eligible to receive it and who makes an application under section 5.

Marginal note:Eligibility

  •  (1) An applicant is eligible to receive a rental housing benefit if

    • (a) they are at least 15 years of age on the reference day;

    • (b) they are alive on the day on which their application is made in accordance with section 5;

    • (c) they are resident in Canada in 2022 for the purposes of the Income Tax Act and their principal residence is, on the reference day, situated in Canada;

    • (d) they — and, if any, their cohabiting spouse or common-law partner — have filed a return of income, as defined in section 122.6 of the Income Tax Act, for 2021 no later than the 120th day after the reference day;

    • (e) they have an adjusted income for 2021 of no more than

      • (i) $35,000, if they

        • (A) have a cohabiting spouse or common-law partner on the reference day,

        • (B) reside on the reference day with a qualified dependant, as defined in section 122.6 of the Income Tax Act, or

        • (C) claimed a deduction for 2021 under subsection 118(1) of that Act, because of paragraph (b) of the description of B in that subsection, and are entitled to that deduction, or

      • (ii) $20,000, in any other case;

    • (f) they — or, if any, their cohabiting spouse or common-law partner — paid, in 2022, rent that is in respect of 2022 for the applicant’s principal residence situated in Canada; and

    • (g) subject to any of subsections (2) to (6) that apply in the circumstances, the total amount of the rent referred to in paragraph (f) is at least 30% of the applicant’s adjusted income for 2021.

  • Marginal note:Unspecified amount — board or other services

    (2) If a payment for room and either board or other services is made in respect of a principal residence and it includes an unspecified amount for the board or other services, only 90% of the payment is to be taken into account as rent for the purposes of paragraph (1)(g).

  • Marginal note:Separation from cohabiting spouse or common-law partner

    (3) If an applicant had a cohabiting spouse or common-law partner during 2022 but is living separate and apart from them on the reference day, the total amount of rent paid by the applicant to be taken into account for the purposes of paragraph (1)(g) is the total amount of rent paid in 2022 by the applicant.

  • Marginal note:Different principal residences

    (4) If the applicant and their cohabiting spouse or common-law partner live in two different principal residences at any point in 2022, the applicant may take into account, for the purposes of paragraph (1)(g), the total amount of the rent paid in 2022 by either of them for both of those principal residences while they were each other’s cohabiting spouse or common-law partner.

  • Marginal note:Part-year residents

    (5) For the purposes of determining the applicant’s adjusted income in paragraphs (1)(e) and (g), if a person was non-resident in Canada for the purposes of the Income Tax Act at any time in 2021, the person’s income for the year is deemed to be the amount that would have been the person’s income for the year had the person been resident in Canada throughout the year.

  • Marginal note:Bankruptcy

    (6) For the purposes of determining the applicant’s adjusted income in paragraphs (1)(e) and (g), if a person becomes bankrupt in 2021, their income for that year is to include their income for the taxation year that begins on January 1 of 2021.

  • Marginal note:Only one cohabiting spouse or common-law partner eligible

    (7) If two applicants who are each other’s cohabiting spouse or common-law partner on the reference day both apply under section 5 for a rental housing benefit and both would, but for this subsection, be eligible for the benefit, only the applicant that the Minister designates is eligible to receive the benefit.

Marginal note:Application

 An application for the benefit must

  • (a) be in the form and manner established by the Minister; and

  • (b) be made no earlier than the reference day and no later than the 120th day after the reference day.

Marginal note:Attestation

 An applicant must, in their application, attest to the accuracy of the information that they provide in it, including the rent paid during 2022 for the principal residence, the address of the principal residence and the name and contact information of the person to whom the rent was paid.

General

Marginal note:Corporation

 The Corporation, on behalf of His Majesty and in the place of the Minister,

  • (a) has all the rights and liabilities of His Majesty and the Minister under this Act; and

  • (b) exercises all the powers and performs all the duties and functions of the Minister under this Act.

Marginal note:Minister of National Revenue

 The Minister of National Revenue may provide services and carry out activities to support the Minister in the administration and enforcement of this Act and may authorize the Commissioner or any other person who is employed or engaged by the Agency or who occupies a position of responsibility in the Agency to provide those services or carry out those activities.

Marginal note:Agreements or arrangements

 The Minister may enter into agreements or arrangements with any department, board or agency of the Government of Canada to assist the Minister in carrying out the purposes and provisions of this Act.

Marginal note:Delegation

 The Minister may authorize the Commissioner or any other person or body, or member of a class of persons or bodies, to exercise any power or perform any duty or function of the Minister under this Act.

Marginal note:Availability of information

  •  (1) Information obtained, or prepared from information obtained, under this Act may be made available to the Minister of National Revenue for the administration and enforcement of the Income Tax Act if the Minister considers it advisable and the information is made available subject to conditions that are agreed on by the Minister and the Minister of National Revenue.

  • Marginal note:Secondary release of information

    (2) The information must not be made available to any other person or body unless the Minister considers it advisable, the information is made available for the same purpose and it is subject to conditions that are agreed on by the Minister and the Minister of National Revenue.

Marginal note:Payment out of Consolidated Revenue Fund

  •  (1) All amounts to be expended in relation to this Act, including amounts payable by the Minister under section 3 and the costs of administering and enforcing this Act, are to be paid out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund to the Corporation.

  • Marginal note:Special account

    (2) The Corporation may pay or cause to be paid all or any part of the money paid out to it under subsection (1) to the Receiver General, to be paid into the Consolidated Revenue Fund and credited to a special account in the accounts of Canada in the Corporation’s name.

  • Marginal note:Payments charged to special account

    (3) If money is credited to the special account under subsection (2),

    • (a) the Minister of National Revenue may, at the request and on behalf of the Corporation, make payments out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund for the purposes of this Act and those payments are to be charged to the special account; and

    • (b) money owing to His Majesty under this Act is to be deposited into the Consolidated Revenue Fund and, unless the special account has been closed under paragraph 28(2)(b), credited to the special account.

Marginal note:Social Insurance Number

 The Minister is authorized to collect and use, for the purposes of the administration and enforcement of this Act, the Social Insurance Number of a person who makes an application under this Act.

Marginal note:Provision of information and documents

  •  (1) The Minister may, for any purpose related to verifying compliance or preventing non-compliance with this Act, require that any person provide any information or document within the reasonable time that the Minister may specify.

  • Marginal note:Ineligibility

    (2) The Minister may decide that an applicant who fails to fulfill or comply with a requirement under subsection (1) is ineligible for a rental housing benefit.

Marginal note:Benefit cannot be charged, etc.

 A rental housing benefit

  • (a) is not subject to the operation of any law relating to bankruptcy or insolvency;

  • (b) cannot be assigned, charged, attached or given as security;

  • (c) cannot be retained by way of deduction, set-off or compensation under any Act of Parliament other than this Act; and

  • (d) is not garnishable moneys for the purposes of the Family Orders and Agreements Enforcement Assistance Act.

Marginal note:Reconsideration of application

  •  (1) Subject to subsection (5), the Minister may reconsider an application within 24 months after the 120th day after the reference day.

  • Marginal note:Decision

    (2) If the Minister decides on reconsideration that a person has received money by way of a rental housing benefit to which they were not entitled, or has not received money to which they were entitled, the Minister must calculate the amount of the money and notify the person of the Minister’s decision.

  • Marginal note:Amount repayable

    (3) Section 18 applies if the Minister decides that a person has received money by way of a benefit to which they were not entitled.

  • Marginal note:Amount payable

    (4) If the Minister decides that a person was entitled to receive money by way of a rental housing benefit, and the money was not paid, the amount calculated under subsection (2) is payable to the person.

  • Marginal note:Extended time to reconsider claim

    (5) If, in the opinion of the Minister, a false or misleading statement or representation has been made in connection with an application for a rental housing benefit, the Minister has 72 months within which to reconsider the application.

Marginal note:Request for review

  •  (1) A person who is the subject of a decision of the Minister made under this Act may make a request to the Minister, in the form and manner established by the Minister, for a review of that decision at any time within 90 days after the day on which they are notified of the decision or any further time that the Minister may allow.

  • Marginal note:Review

    (2) The Minister must review the decision if a request for its review is made under subsection (1). On completion of the review, the Minister must confirm, vary or rescind the decision.

  • Marginal note:Notification

    (3) The Minister must notify the person who made the request of the result of the Minister’s review under subsection (2).

Marginal note:Return of overpayment or erroneous payment

  •  (1) If the Minister determines that a person has received a rental housing benefit to which they are not entitled, or an amount in excess of the amount of such a benefit to which they are entitled, the person must repay the amount of the payment or the excess amount, as the case may be, as soon as feasible.

  • Marginal note:Recovery as debt due to His Majesty

    (2) The amount of the erroneous payment or overpayment, as determined by the Minister, constitutes a debt due to His Majesty as of the day on which the amount was paid and the debt is payable and may be recovered by the Minister as of the day the Minister determined the amount of the erroneous payment or overpayment.

Marginal note:Limitation or prescription period

  •  (1) Subject to this section, no action or proceedings may be taken to recover money owing under this Act after the end of the six-year limitation or prescription period that begins on the day on which the money becomes due and payable.

  • Marginal note:Deduction, set-off or compensation

    (2) Money owing by a person under this Act may be recovered at any time by way of deduction from, or set-off or compensation against, any sum of money, including a rental housing benefit, that may be due or payable by His Majesty to the person, other than an amount payable under section 122.61 of the Income Tax Act.

  • Marginal note:Acknowledgment of liability

    (3) If a person’s liability for money owing under this Act is acknowledged in accordance with subsection (5), the time during which the limitation or prescription period has run before the acknowledgment does not count in the calculation of that period.

  • Marginal note:Acknowledgment after limitation or prescription period

    (4) If a person’s liability for money owing under this Act is acknowledged in accordance with subsection (5) after the end of the limitation or prescription period, an action or proceedings to recover the money may, subject to subsections (3) and (6), be brought within six years after the date of the acknowledgment.

  • Marginal note:Types of acknowledgments

    (5) An acknowledgment of liability means

    • (a) a written promise to pay the money owing, signed by the person or their agent or other representative;

    • (b) a written acknowledgment of the money owing, signed by the person or their agent or other representative, whether or not a promise to pay can be implied from it and whether or not it contains a refusal to pay;

    • (c) a part payment by the person or their agent or other representative of any money owing; or

    • (d) any acknowledgment of the money owing made by the person, their agent or other representative or the trustee or administrator in the course of proceedings under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act or any other legislation dealing with the payment of debts.

  • Marginal note:Limitation or prescription period suspended

    (6) The running of a limitation or prescription period in respect of money owing under this Act is suspended during any period in which it is prohibited to commence or continue an action or other proceedings against the person to recover money owing under this Act.

  • Marginal note:Non-application

    (7) This section does not apply in respect of an action or proceedings relating to the execution, renewal or enforcement of a judgment.

Marginal note:No interest payable

 No interest is payable on any amount owing to His Majesty under this Act as a result of an overpayment or an erroneous payment.

Marginal note:Violations

  •  (1) A person commits a violation if they

    • (a) knowingly make, in relation to an application for a rental housing benefit, a representation that is false or misleading; or

    • (b) make an application for, and receive, a rental housing benefit knowing that they are not eligible to receive it.

  • Marginal note:Penalty

    (2) The Minister may impose a penalty on a person if the Minister is of the opinion that the person has committed a violation.

  • Marginal note:Amount of penalty

    (3) The Minister may set the amount of the penalty for each violation at not more than 50% of the benefit that was or would have been paid as a result of committing the violation.

  • Marginal note:For greater certainty

    (4) For greater certainty, no penalty may be imposed on a person if they mistakenly believe that a representation is true or that they were eligible to receive the benefit, as the case may be.

  • Marginal note:Purpose of penalty

    (5) The purpose of a penalty is to promote compliance with this Act and not to punish.

Marginal note:Limitation of imposition of penalties

 A penalty must not be imposed under section 21 if more than three years have passed after the day on which the act that would constitute the violation occurred.

Marginal note:Rescission or reduction of penalty

 The Minister may rescind the imposition of a penalty under section 21, or reduce the penalty, on the presentation of new facts or on being of the opinion that the penalty was imposed without knowledge of, or on the basis of a mistake as to, some material fact.

Marginal note:Recovery as debt due to His Majesty

 A penalty imposed under section 21 constitutes a debt due to His Majesty and the debt is payable and may be recovered by the Minister as of the day on which the penalty is imposed.

Marginal note:Offences

  •  (1) Every person commits an offence who

    • (a) for the purpose of obtaining a rental housing benefit for themselves, knowingly uses false identity information or another person’s identity information; or

    • (b) with intent to steal all or a substantial part of another person’s rental housing benefit, counsels that person to apply for the benefit.

  • Marginal note:Punishment

    (2) Every person who is guilty of an offence under subsection (1) is liable on summary conviction to a fine of not more than the sum of $5,000 plus an amount of not more than double the amount of the benefit that was or would have been paid as a result of committing the offence, to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years less a day, or to both.

  • Marginal note:Definition of identity information

    (3) In paragraph (1)(a), identity information has the same meaning as in section 402.1 of the Criminal Code.

Marginal note:Designation — investigators

  •  (1) The Minister may designate as an investigator any person or class of persons for the purpose of enforcing section 25.

  • Marginal note:Authorization

    (2) The Minister may authorize the Commissioner to designate as an investigator any employee or class of employees of the Agency for the purpose of enforcing section 25.

Marginal note:Limitation period

 Proceedings in respect of an offence under this Act may be instituted at any time within, but not later than, five years after the day on which the Minister becomes aware of the subject matter of the prosecution.

Marginal note:Sunset provision

  •  (1) Despite any other provision of this Act, a payment out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund must not be made under section 12 after the fifth anniversary of the day on which this Act comes into force.

  • Marginal note:Consolidated Revenue Fund

    (2) On the day after that fifth anniversary,

    • (a) any money paid out under subsection 12(1) and held on that day by the Corporation is to be paid into the Consolidated Revenue Fund and credited to the Receiver General; and

    • (b) any special account referred to in subsection 12(2) is closed and any money in that account on closing is to remain in the Consolidated Revenue Fund and is credited to the Receiver General.


Date modified: