New Brunswick

Emergency Fuel Benefit

Complex application

Tax filing required

The Emergency Fuel Benefit is to help New Brunswick households in an emergency who cannot afford the cost of heating their home.  The Emergency Fuel Benefit can be used for any type of heat. The Benefit is not guaranteed, and you must show that you have exhausted all your other options and are still unable to pay your heating bill.

An emergency fuel benefit of up to $550 per calendar year may be given if you qualify. This benefit is open to all New Brunswickers including those who get social assistance.

How do I know if my situation is an emergency?

Examples of an emergency can include:

  • You received a high heating bill due to the cold, which means you cannot pay your rent or mortgage;
  • You received a high heating bill due to the cold and must choose between feeding your family and paying your winter heating bill; or
  • You got sick and had unexpected high medical costs, that have made it hard to pay your heating bill.

You may qualify for the Emergency Fuel Benefit if you are in an emergency and you are not able to pay to heat your home.

  • To find out if you need the benefit, your monthly expenses, assets (money you have) and income will be assessed. If your expenses are more than what you earn each month, your household is in deficit.  This means you spend more than you earn. You are assessed to find out if your household is in deficit.
  • A benefit of up to $550 per calendar year could be provided to help you, depending on the size of the household deficit.
  • If a deficit exists, the benefit is approved

Notice of Assessment

A statement from Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to each taxpayer, every year, after you have filed a tax return. It tells you the amount of income tax you owe, or the amount of the refund you will get.

Proof of income

For example:

Pay stubs, pension statements (Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security), rental property income, income tax returns, income tax notice of assessment, business/rental/farming income, disability or veterans affairs pension, child and spousal support payments, GST credit.

Proof of Expenses / cost estimates

For example:

Receipts, fuel, electricity or oil consumption bills, services and equipment estimates, medical expenses, student loans, property taxes, mortgage payments, all others.

  1. Call your local Social Development office at 1-833-733-7835. Tell the agent you would like to apply for the Emergency Fuel Benefit.

    The agent will ask you some questions about your situation. They will ask about your income including the Canada Pensions Plan (CPP), Old Age Security (OAS), etc.  They will also ask about your monthly expenses like your rent/ mortgage, transportation costs, food costs, bills, etc.

    The agent is trying to figure out if you are potentially eligible for the benefit. If the agent thinks you may be eligible for the benefit, they will book you an in-person appointment with a Needs Assessor at your local Social Development office to complete your application.
  2. If you are given an appointment with a Needs Assessor, you will have to gather documents for yourself and others living in the household to bring to your appointment. You will need to bring documents that show how much the adults in your household earn each month, and what your expenses are each month. You can find a full list of the documents you might need on the Emergency Fuel Benefit page.

    If you do not have all the documents when you go for your appointment you can drop them off later, but a final decision can only happen after all the documents have been given to the Needs Asses
  3. Once the Needs Assessor has all the documents, they will complete your application and tell you if you have been approved.  If you are approved a cheque will be mailed out to you.  It usually takes a couple of days for the cheque to be processed and put in the mail.

Last updated: June 9, 2021