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Payday loans with government benefits

See how payday lenders differ in what government benefits they accept.

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  • Accepts government benefits
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  • APR & loan term vary by province
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If you receive government benefits as your main source of income, you may find your options are limited if you need a loan. But some payday lenders accept government benefits as income, including Employment Insurance, Child Tax Benefits, Disability Tax Credit, Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security and more.

Just make sure you’re applying for legitimate payday loans with your government benefits and that you understand the drawbacks of a payday loan. Overall, payday loans should be used as a last resort because of their incredibly steep interest rates and short repayment terms.

⚠️ Warning: Be cautious with payday loans
Payday loans are expensive. If you're experiencing financial hardship call Credit Counselling Canada for free financial counselling (Monday-Friday 8:00am-5:00pm at +1 866-398-5999). Consider alternatives instead of a payday loan:
  • Local resources. Government programs and nonprofits offer free financial services and help with food, utilities and rent.
  • Debt relief companies. There are services to help you reduce your debt payments.
  • Payment extensions. Talk with bill providers about longer payment plans or due-date extensions.
  • Side jobs. Sell unwanted items online, sign up for food delivery and more.

Payday loans with government benefits

We checked several licensed payday sites. Here’s what they say about payday loans with government benefits.

Payday lenderAccepted government benefitsServiced provincesTurnaround timeFunding options
Cash MoneyEmployment insurance, child tax benefits, social assistance, disability income and Canada Pension Plan (CPP). Cash Money is unable to accept social assistance as a form of income for Manitoba residents.BC, NS, ON, SKAs little as 15 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfere-Transfer, in-storeGo to site
GoDayEmployment insurance, social assistance, Canada child benefit (CCB), disability tax credit, Old Age Security (OAS), private pensions and CPPAB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEI, SKAs little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfere-Transfer or direct depositGo to site
iCASHEmployment insurance, child tax, ODSP, AISH, provincial disability, CPP, OAS, social assistance and moreAB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEIAs little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-TransferOnline e-Transfer, direct deposit or in-storeGo to site
Money MartMoney Mart is flexible with income and only asks for proof of steady income, such as a pay stub, benefits letter or direct deposits of government-assistance benefitsAB, BC, MB, NS, ON, SKAs little as 1 hour after getting approvedDirect deposit, online e-Transfer, in store (120+ branches)Go to site
Mr. PaydayCPP, private pension, employment insurance, Worker’s Compensation Board benefits (WCB), CCB or non-government disability benefits. It does not accept disability income from the government.AB, BC, ONFunding in as little as 30 minutesOnline e-TransferRead review
PAY2DAYPAY2DAY accepts EI, CPP, Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) and OAS. It does not accept social assistance or disability incomeON, BCOn the spot after approval in-store, or via e-Transfer within Within 1-2 hours via e-Transfer once approvedIn-store (30 locations) or via online e-TransferRead review
Speedy CashEmployment insurance, CCB, CPP or private pension (must be paid via direct deposit)BC, AB, SK, NS, YK, NU, NWT24-hour application process with funding on the spot for in-person payday loan approvals, and up to 1 business day to e-Transfer for online applications20 conveniently placed locations across BC, AB, SK and NS or direct deposit or via e-TransferRead review
Maximum borrowing costs per province
Always refer to your contract for exact repayment amounts and costs as they may vary from our results.
Province Maximum allowable cost of borrowing
Alberta, British Columbia, New Brunswick, Ontario & Prince Edward Island $15 per $100 borrowed
Manitoba & Saskatchewan $17 per $100 borrowed
Nova Scotia $19 per $100 borrowed
Newfoundland and Labrador $21 per $100 borrowed
Northwest Territories, Nunavut & the Yukon $60 per $100 borrowed
Quebec Limit of 35% annual interest rate (AIR)

Features of payday loans with government benefits

Payday loans are a convenient way to gain access to cash when you need it. While borrowers receiving government benefits need to tread carefully with payday loans, here’s a rundown of the key benefits of this type of fast financing:

  • Quick turnaround time. The appeal of payday loans starts with how quickly you can gain access to your funding. Payday lenders issue funding nearly immediately after you’re approved if you apply in-store, while most online payday lenders will transfer your cash to your bank account usually within the same business day, if not sooner.
  • Easy application process. Payday lenders have made it incredibly easy to apply for payday loans with options, including online, over the phone or in-person at branches across the country. Some physical storefronts are even open 24/7.
  • Government benefits accepted as income. While some lenders only accept employment income to qualify for a payday loan, the ones we’ve listed accept various forms of government benefits and income from private pensions.
  • Use the funds for any purpose. Once you’re approved for a payday loan, you have the freedom to use the money as you’d like from consolidating debts, paying bills or covering off a financial emergency.
  • Bad credit is OK. Payday loan providers will usually accept applications from people with poor credit histories because they prioritize your income and ability to repay your loan on time over your credit score. If you receive government benefits and your credit score isn’t in great shape, you may still be able to qualify.
  • Payment flexibility. Depending on the payday lender you opt to work with, you can receive your funds in cash, via INTERAC e-Transfer, loaded onto a prepaid card tied to your loan account or as a direct deposit into your bank account.
  • Unsecured. Payday loans are unsecured so you don’t need to put up any collateral.

What to watch out for

Payday loans come with their fair share of notoriety. Here are the main red flags every consumer needs to take stock of before applying for payday loans with government benefits:

  • Steep interest rates. The crucial reason why payday loans should be used as a last resort is their sky-high interest rates, to the tune of 400% or more. This makes them far more expensive than taking on credit card debt, for example.
  • Short repayment terms. There is no wiggle room with payday loans; they must be repaid by your next payday with terms capping out at 62 days at most. You’ll need to make sure you can allocate your next pay cheque from government benefits to repaying your loan without any issues.
  • Caps on how much you can borrow. Most provinces cap payday loans at $1,500, so if you need more cash, this may not be your best option. Consumers in some provinces also can’t borrow more than 50% of their net income.
  • Disreputable lenders. Not all lenders follow provincial or territorial laws and regulations. Check to make sure the payday lender you’d like to work with is licensed and isn’t a scam. Always choose a reputable company that has positive feedback from real customers.

What do I need to qualify for payday loans with government benefits?

What you’ll need to qualify for a payday loan will vary slightly depending on the lender you’ve decided to work with. On the whole, payday lenders will typically ask for information such as:

  • A valid government-issued ID with your name and address
  • An phone number and email address to contact you
  • Proof of your income (benefits letter, bank statements showing direct deposits of government benefits, copies of government benefits cheques)
  • Proof of your net and gross income amounts
  • Your bank account information (chequing account, routing and institution numbers)

The eligibility criteria can differ between lenders and provinces; however, the following minimum criteria will usually need to be met:

  • Age. You must be 18 years of age, or the age of majority in your province or territory.
  • Residency. You’ll need to be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident, and have a valid Canadian address.
  • Income. You’ll need proof that you have some form of income, whether it’s employment income, investment income, welfare or government benefits.
  • Bank account. Most lenders will require you to have a working bank account. If you apply in person at a store, you may not need a bank account.

How do I choose which payday loan to apply for?

When you’re looking to apply for payday loans with government benefits, you may be inundated with choices. You should keep the following factors in mind, since they’ll vary between lenders:

Compare payday loans that accept government benefits

Name Product Loan Amount Loan Term Interest Rate Turnaround Time Serviced Provinces
24/7 CASH
Money Mart Payday Loan
$120 - $1,500
1 - 62 days
Varies by province
As little as 1 hour after getting approved
AB, BC, MB, NS, ON, SK
To be eligible, you’ll need to be at least 18 years of age with a steady source of income and a chequing account. No credit check required.
CASHBACK
iCASH Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
7 - 62 days
Varies by province
As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
AB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEI
Get up to 20% in cash back once your payday loan is fully repaid. Conditions apply.

To be eligible, you'll need to be at least 19 years of age and have a net income of at least $800/month deposited into your bank account.
Cash Money Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
5 - 40 days
Varies by province
As little as 15 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
BC, NS, ON, SK
Apply for your first $300 payday loan at a $20 cost (excludes SK applicants).

You'll need to be 18 years of age or older and have a net income of at least $1,000/month. Residents of MB and NB must apply in-store for a loan.
GoDay Payday Loan
$100 - $1,500
Up to 62 days
Varies by province
As little as 2 minutes with INTERAC e-Transfer
AB, BC, MB, NB, NS, ON, PEI, SK
To apply, you'll need to be a Canadian resident over the age of 18 with a valid email address, phone number and an open bank account with a Canadian bank or credit union.
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Bottom line

You can apply for payday loans with government benefits. There are payday lenders that accept various forms of government benefits as income, including EI, CPP, OAS, Child Tax Benefits, Disability Tax Credit and more. Your job is to make sure the payday lenders on your shortlist accept the specific type of government benefits you receive as income to qualify. Also make sure that you have proof this is a steady source of income you can use towards repaying your payday loan.

You may also wish to consider your payday loan alternatives, which will come with better terms and more management payment options. Some of these options also account for government benefits as acceptable sources of income.

Frequently asked questions

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