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Federal Government Waives EI Waiting Period until September 25, 2021

By January 31, 2021 No Comments

On January 29, 2021, Minister Qualtrough announced EI regulations will be amended to temporarily waive the waiting period for EI claimants who establish a new claim between January 31, 2021 and September 25, 2021.

This includes claimants of regular, fishing and special benefits.

This temporary change will allow people who are applying for benefits to be paid for their first week of unemployment. It will also help ease their heightened financial stress at a time of great uncertainty.

Canadians who are EI eligible can be confident that this temporary measure will not change the total weeks of EI benefits for which they are entitled to, nor the service standard for payment. Claims will be automatically processed with this new waiver, meaning workers are not required to take additional steps to receive the support they need.

This temporary measure means that people who open a new EI claim after January 31, 2021 and return to work before exhausting all of their weeks of entitlement will benefit from an additional week of income support, due to the removal of the waiting period.

To encourage compliance with public health measures, the Government waived the waiting period for EI sickness claims established on or after September 27, 2020 for a period of one year.  The waiting period was also waived for all EI claims established between September 27, 2020 and October 25, 2020 in order to avoid creating a week for which claimants may not receive payment as many workers transitioned from the Canada Emergency Response Benefit to the simplified EI program.

 

Summary:

  • The Government of Canada is responding to the increase in people who are out of work due to COVID-19, by waiving the waiting period for new EI claimants between January 31, 2021 until September 25, 2021. This change applies for claimants of regular, fishing and special benefits.
  • Waiving the waiting period enables eligible workers to be paid for their first week of unemployment.
  • This will help ease the financial pressure faced by workers and provide income support when they may need it the most.
  • Canadians who are EI eligible can be confident that this temporary measure will not change the total weeks of EI benefits for which they are entitled to, nor the service standard for payment.
  • This temporary measure means that people who open a new EI claim after January 31, 2021 and return to work before exhausting all of their weeks of entitlement will benefit from an additional week of income support, due to the removal of the waiting period.