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December 14, 2021

Yes, Virginia, that HST cheque actually is in the mail

Ontario is now sending out the second of three Ontario Sales Tax Transition Benefit cheques to those who qualify.

Dalton The temporary relief plan was introduced by the McGuinty government to help take some of the sting out of the HST, a controversial tax change that took effect last July, and win back the hearts and minds of Ontario voters.

The benefit goes out in three instalments with a total maximum of $300 for individuals and $1,000 for families, including those headed up by single parents. Most consumers can expect their current cheque to be $100, whereas families will get $335.

Anyone making more than $82,000 and families with a combined income of more than $166,770 won’t see anything, however, and the benefit decreases sharply for those with incomes that are very close to the limit.

To qualify for the current payout – which is not a taxable benefit and doesn’t count as income either – you must have been a resident of Ontario at the end of November and have filed income tax returns for the past two years.

You’re out of luck, however, if you’re under the age of 18 (unless you’re supporting a child), have been in jail for more than 90 days this year or are behind in your child support payments.

By Gordon Powers, MSN Money




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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

James HaversJames Havers

James is the senior editor of MSN Money living in Toronto. He has worked for the Nikkei Shimbun (Tokyo),,, Canadian Business and other publications. Havers turned to journalism after teaching overseas.

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with... Deals