The employment insurance (EI) benefits are restricted only for employees and are not applicable to self-employed people in general irrespective of whether they are Canadians, foreign workers with a work permit, or permanent residents. The benefits come into effect when an employees loses his job without any of his faults. It is applicable especially in the case of temporary or permanent loss of job/lay-off.
Are You Actively Looking for Job? Then You May Qualify for Employment Insurance Benefits
The first and foremost criteria for qualifying for EI benefits is that a person losing a job must be seeking another employment actively. However, those with temporary work permits are not eligible for this benefit as they are not allowed to work with a new employer. The benefits can be availed by those with open work permits and who are ready to take up work.
Conditions For Qualifying EI Benefits include:
- Full-time employment with a valid employer before the layoff
- Lost a job without your fault
- Have been unemployed for 7 consecutive days at least once in the last 52 weeks
- Worked for required employment hours within the last 52 weeks mandatory for qualifying for EI benefits
- Ready and capable of working for every working day
- Actively seeking work (keep a log of all the prospective employers you have been contacting as authorities may ask you the number and name of employers you have approached for a job)
Qualifying For Sickness Benefits and Changes Due To Corona Pandemic
In general, the EI sickness benefits can be offered financial assistance for up to 15 weeks if an employee is unable to work due to health issues including injury, illness, and chronic medical conditions. Under this condition, you are eligible to receive around 55% of your earnings with a cap of $573 per week.
However, post corona pandemic the Federal government has made some temporary changes in these rules from September 2020. These new rules will be applicable for a year at least. According to the new changes you only require 120 insured hours for getting these Employment Insurance Benefits. The government will offer a one-time credit of 480 hours so that you can fulfill the required criteria of 600 insured hours of work.
An employee facing health issues during the corona pandemic will receive a minimum of $500 per week and can become eligible for more based on his employment and health conditions. The regular 52-week period of accumulation of insured hours will be extended for those receiving CERB. For availing sickness benefits you must submit a medical certificate that proves that you are unable to work due to medical reasons and that your earnings have dropped by 40% for at least a week.