How to Claim a Northern Living Allowance

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Canada’s northernmost territories already have difficulties attracting new residents because of the harsh winters, the short wintertime daylight hours and their distance from major metropolitan centers, and when those difficulties couple with a higher cost of living than in more hospitable locales, attracting a workforce can be difficult. To help combat these issues, Canada offers a Northern Allowance -- a weekly cash bonus -- to workers who work above the 57th parallel in Alberta and all workers in the Northwest Territories, except those working for the Northwest Territories Power Corporation.

Take a position in a qualifying region. Because it’s rolled into paychecks, the Northwest Allowance is only paid to citizens who are employed, and employment is conditional to receiving the allowance.

Submit new-hire information to your employer. When you finalize your work arrangements with your employer, your company’s human resource manager enters the Northern Allowance information into the Human Resources Information System. You do not need to separately apply for the allowance -- all workers automatically receive it.


Certify you receive your Northern Allowance by inspecting your pay stub. The providences pay Northern Allowance funds on a biweekly basis.