More than 350,000 families in B.C. will get a boost to help with cost of living

MORE than 350,000 families in B.C. will get their second BC Family Benefit boost to help with the cost of living, starting immediately.

“Global inflation continues to squeeze household budgets, and paying for essentials like groceries and gas is hard on many families right now,” said Katrine Conroy, Minister of Finance, announced on Monday. “Through the second enhanced BC Family Benefit payment, parents will have a little extra money this month to stretch their budgets and provide their family with life’s essentials.”

Recognizing people are being pinched by price surges, the B.C. government has boosted the monthly BC Family Benefit payments for low- and moderate-income families for three months, January through March. A family with two children can receive up to $350 more than usual over the three months. Added to the regular monthly payments, the three-month enhancement means a family with two children will get as much as $330 each month.

Eligibility is based on income and number of children. People can expect to see their family benefit and the bonus cost-of-living payment as a deposit or cheque through the Canada Revenue Agency alongside the federal Canada Child Benefit program. Eligible families are automatically determined when someone registers for the Canada Child Benefit.

“We’re helping people with the additional challenges they’re facing right now, while making investments in a future B.C. that works for everyone,” Conroy said. “No matter what is on the horizon, we’re here for people and families in British Columbia.”

Since fall 2022, the Province has provided approximately $2 billion for supports to help people with increased costs through the BC Family Benefit, the BC Affordability Credit, support for back-to-school expenses, a one-time energy rebate and a cap on rent increases below the rate of inflation.

Budget 2023 will continue to make investments in the things that matter most to help build a stronger, more secure B.C. for everyone, the Province said.

 

Quick Facts:

* Inflation in B.C. peaked at 8% in May 2022 and has since dropped to 6% as of December 2022, but inflation and prices remain high, particularly for shelter, food and transportation.

* According to the Bank of Canada, inflation is expected to fall an additional 3% mid-2023 and return to the 2% target in 2024.

* BC Family Benefit payments for February start Feb. 20, and can take as long as 10 days to arrive for all eligible families.

* Approximately 75% of B.C. families are receiving the enhanced BC Family Benefit credit and approximately 85% of those families will receive at least an additional $50 per month, per child.

* The BC Family Benefit was formerly known as the Child Opportunity Benefit.

 

Learn More:

For information about new and existing affordability supports, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/family-social-supports/affordability/family-benefit

Learn more about the enhanced BC Family Benefit here: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/family-social-supports/affordability/family-benefit#:~:text=For%20the%20July%202022%20to,month%20for%20each%20addition

For information about other ways to apply for the Canada Child Benefit, visit: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/child-family-benefits/canada-child-benefit-overview/canada-child-benefit-apply.html

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