Wage Earner Protection Program (trustees and receivers) – Overview

From Employment and Social Development Canada

1. Overview

The Wage Earner Protection Program (WEPP) provides for the payment of outstanding eligible wages to individuals whose employer is bankrupt or subject to a receivership within the meaning of subsection 243(2) of the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act.

The payment covers eligible wages up to an amount equal to four times the maximum weekly insurable earnings under the Employment Insurance Act ($3,946.16 for 2017), minus the amounts prescribed by the Wage Earner Protection Program Regulations.

The WEPP is delivered by Service Canada for the Labour Program.

Subrogation

When an individual applies to receive a WEPP payment, they agree to sign over their wage claim to the Government of Canada, up to the amount of the WEPP payment.

After the payment, the Government of Canada recovers the amount paid from the employer through the bankruptcy or receivership proceedings.

Responsibilities of the Trustees and Receivers

Trustees and Receivers must:

  • identify individuals who are owed eligible wages;
  • determine the amount of eligible wages owed to each individual;
  • inform each individual of the existence of the WEPP. For example, by directing them to the online application on Service Canada's website, and informing them of the conditions under which a payment may be made;
  • comply with any directions given by the Minister regarding the performance of their duties under the Wage Earner Protection Program Act;
  • provide Service Canada and each individual with the information necessary to establish eligibility for payment within 45 days following the date of bankruptcy or receivership; and
  • inform the Minister when the trustee is discharged or the receiver completes their duties.

Trustees and receivers must provide each individual with the following information:

  • the date of the bankruptcy or receivership;
  • a statement informing them of their requirement to submit a proof of claim for wages owing;
  • a copy of the information and documents sent to the Minister with respect to the individual.

Trustees and receivers may also wish to send a WEPP pamphlet to applicants.

Legislative changes to the WEPP

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