Employment Insurance Improvements

We are improving Employment Insurance (EI) to meet the needs of workers and employers. Here’s what we have done recently to make EI more flexible, inclusive and easier to access.

EI maternity and parental benefits

To help working parents, we are making EI maternity and parental benefits more flexible.

Earlier access to maternity benefits

Eligible pregnant workers will be able to receive EI maternity benefits up to 12 weeks before their due date.

More choice for parents

Parents will be able to choose to receive parental benefits over 12 months or 18 months.

EI caregiving benefits

We are offering Canadians more options to help them care for their critically ill loved ones.

Introducing a new Family Caregiver benefit for adults

Caregivers who are away from work to support a critically ill or injured adult family member will be able to receive up to 15 weeks of EI.

Introducing a new Family Caregiver benefit for children

Now any family member can receive up to 35 weeks of benefits to care for a critically ill child, rather than only parents. These benefits were previously known as Parents of Critically Ill Children benefits.

Making it easier to apply for caregiving benefits

Medical doctors and nurse practitioners will now be able to sign all EI caregiving medical certificates.

Other measures

We recently made other changes to the EI program to better support workers when they need it most.

Working While on Claim Pilot Project

This pilot project allows you to keep receiving a portion of your EI benefits when you work.

Temporary special measures for Work-Sharing

Has your business been affected by the downturn in the forestry sector? The Government of Canada has introduced temporary special measures that extend the maximum duration of Work-Sharing agreements from 38 weeks to 76 weeks for eligible employers.

No more new entrant and re-entrant rules

We eliminated the stricter eligibility rules for people re-entering the workforce.

Reducing the waiting period from two weeks to one week

This change eases the financial pressure on EI claimants.

Simplifying job search responsibilities

The rules when looking for a new job have been simplified.

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