Canada. Employment Insurance

Memos and Bulletins

Public Comments As of December 3, 2017, eligible pregnant workers will be able to receive EI maternity benefits up to 12 weeks before their due date * parents can choose to receive parental benefits over a period of 12 months at the current benefit rate, or up to 18 months at a lower benefit rate

Contact Information

Office Phone 1-800-206-7218,, English ; 1-800-808-6352, French ; Automated Telephone Reporting Service Englishing Service: 1-800-531-7555 ; Automated Telephone Reporting Service French English Reporting Service: 1-800-431-5595 ; Social Security Tribunal: 1-877-227-8577
TTY Phone Toll free 1-800-529-3742

Description and Service Details

Description (Service) Service Overview
  • Temporary financial assistance and support in finding new employment
  • claimants must conduct a reasonable job search to remain eligible
  • Basic benefit rate is 55% of average insured earnings
  • maximum weekly benefit $650
  • duration of benefits based on insured weeks of work and regional unemployment rate
Working While on Claim
  • claimants keep 50 cents of EI benefits for every dollar earned in wages, up to a maximum of 90% of weekly earnings
  • claimants may choose instead to earn up to 40% of regular benefits or $75 per week (whichever is higher) with no reduction in EI payment
Family Supplement
  • for low income families who receive the Canada Child Benefit (see separate entry)
  • amount based on annual net family income
  • supplement will be added to EI payment
Special benefits
  • 26 weeks sickness benefits
  • 26 weeks compassionate care benefits
  • 35 weeks for family caregivers to care for critically ill or injured children, and 15 weeks to care for critically ill or injured adults
  • 15 weeks maternity benefits
  • 40 weeks standard parental, 69 weeks extended parental benefits available to natural, legal or adoptive parents -- benefits can be shared by both parents
Claimants may be able to receive combination of special benefits

My Service Canada Account
  • computer access to claim information
Social Security Tribunal, 1-877-227-8577
  • independent appeal process for Employment Insurance decisions, see separate entry
Job Bank
  • online employment information and job postings
  • employers can post jobs online
  • see separate entry
Program of Employment and Social Development Canada, delivered by Service Canada
Hours Recorded information Mon-Sun 24 hours
  • call Mon-Fri 8:30 am-4:30 pm to speak to an agent
Areas Served Canada
Eligibility Persons legally entitled to work in Canada who have an interruption of earnings due to shortage of work, injury, quarantine, pregnancy, adoption, personal illness, or a grave illness in the family
Claimants must have worked a minimum of 420-700 hours (depending on region) of insured employment in the year prior to application (600 hours for maternity, parental, sickness or compassionate care benefits)
  • workers 65 years and older pay Employment Insurance (EI) premiums and are entitled to EI benefits, though income from employment-related pensions will be deducted
  • Claimants who quit a job without just cause or are fired for misconduct are ineligible for regular benefits
  • just cause includes discrimination, sexual harassment, dangerous working conditions, significant change in wages or salary, leaving to care for child or immediate family member, major changes in work duties
Application Application must be made online or in person at Service Canada sites -- see separate entries
Application and Records of Employment from previous employers should be submitted immediately after employment has ended, as delay may cause loss of benefits
  • the first week of the claim is a waiting period for which no benefits are paid
  • claimants' reports must be correctly completed to generate payment, but claimants of maternity and parental, parents of critically ill children, or compassionate care benefits do not need to complete reports
Languages English, French
Fees None

Site Information

Located In Community Toronto
Address & Map
Toronto, ON
Physical Access Not Applicable

Categories and Classification

HCSD Main Heading Income Programs
HCSD Sub Heading Employment Insurance (EI) ; Social Assistance
Service Categories Employment Insurance

Agency Overview

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