What if I get more money than I should?

Getting money you were not supposed to get is called an “overpayment”. In almost all cases, you will have to pay it back.

It is also against the law to cash or deposit the cheque or to use the money.

You must return the cheque, or return the money if the government deposited it directly into your bank account. If you do not do this, there could be serious consequences. For example, you could be fined, need to work more hours to qualify for EI benefits in the future, or be charged with a crime.

If you cannot pay back the full amount right away, contact the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) at 1-866-864-5841 and ask to pay it over a period of time. For TTY, call 1-800-665-0354.

Sometimes, the CRA or the Tax Court of Canada can decide that you do not have to pay it back. For example, this could happen if you:

  • would have a very hard time financially if you had to pay the money back, or
  • got the money because the government made a mistake.
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