EI caregiving benefits and leave: While receiving benefits

From: Employment and Social Development Canada


Due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, there are changes to this program.

Changes to support you during COVID-19

Temporary changes have been made to the EI program to help you access EI caregiving benefits. The following changes are in effect until September 25, 2021, and could apply to you:

  • the waiting period may be waived
  • you only need 120 insured hours to qualify for benefits because you'll get a one-time credit of 480 insured hours to help you meet the required 600 insured hours of work
  • you'll receive at least $500 per week before taxes but you could receive more
  • if you received the CERB, the 52-week period to accumulate insured hours will be extended

Sections on this page impacted by these temporary changes are flagged as Temporary COVID-19 relief.

While you are receiving caregiving benefits, you must continue to be eligible. Please contact Service Canada if:

  • the person you are providing care or support to no longer requires your care or support; or
  • you start working or earn money. For more information on how earnings impact your benefits, visit Working while on claim.

If you do not inform Service Canada of these changes, you risk being overpaid and having to repay benefits.

If your situation changes

You may be eligible for other benefits. This could include a different caregiving benefit if the state of health of the person you are caring for changes or sickness benefits if you become ill yourself. You must meet the eligibility requirements for each benefit.

We encourage you to contact Service Canada directly to speak with an agent who can give you advice for your specific circumstances.

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