More IE Info

Hello Members,
Dean asked me to do some research and and send out more information about EI benefit eligibility during Labour Disputes. Here’s what I have found from the Service Canada website:

Am I eligible for EI regular benefits?

You may be entitled to receive EI regular benefits if you:

  • are employed in insurable employment;
  • lost your employment through no fault of your own;
  • have been without work and without pay for at least seven consecutive days in the last 52 weeks;
  • have worked for the required number of insurable hours in the last 52 weeks or since the start of your last EI claim, whichever is shorter;
  • are ready, willing, and capable of working each day; and
  • are actively looking for work (you must keep a written record of employers you contact, including when you contacted them).

You may not be entitled to receive EI regular benefits if you:

  • voluntarily left your employment without just cause;
  • were dismissed for misconduct; or
  • are unemployed because you are directly participating in a labour dispute (strike, lockout, or other type of dispute).
Regarding Records of Employment Service Canada says the following in the information section for employers. It isn’t clear to me if a labour dispute is included in the “interruption of earning”.

When do I have to issue an ROE?

Regardless of whether the employee intends to file a claim for EI benefits, you have to issue an ROE:

  • each time an employee experiences an interruption of earnings; or
  • when Service Canada requests one.
If you have a biweekly pay period cycle, you must submit the electronic ROE to Service Canada no later than five calendar days after the end of the pay period in which the interruption of earnings occurs.

What is an interruption of earnings?

An interruption of earnings occurs in the following situations:

  • When an employee has had or is anticipated to have seven consecutive calendar days with no work and no insurable earnings from the employer, an interruption of earnings occurs. This situation is called the seven-day rule. For example, the seven-day rule applies when employees quit their jobs or are laid off, or when their employment is terminated (see exceptions in the table below). When the seven-day rule applies, the first day of the interruption of earnings is considered the last day for which paid (see Block 11, Last day for which paid for details).
  • When an employee’s salary falls below 60% of regular weekly earnings because of illness, injury, quarantine, pregnancy, the need to care for a newborn or a child placed for the purposes of adoption, the need to provide care or support to a family member who is gravely ill with a significant risk of death, or the need for a parent to care for a critically ill child an interruption of earnings occurs. In this case, the first day of the interruption of earnings is the Sunday of the week in which the salary falls below 60% of the regular weekly earnings.

Presumably the employer will issue the ROEs at the end of June as usual, or, after  seven consecutive calendar days with no work and insurable earnings whichever comes first.

I hope this answers the questions many of you have been asking.

Jacqueline Peacock
Membership Secretary