EI changes 2016

Improving Employment Insurance (EI) is part of the Government’s plan to help the middle class and those seeking to join it.

The Government has taken immediate action to improve EI for Canadians across the country, so that it works better in today’s job market. We want Employment Insurance to be there for Canadians who need help the most, when they need it. A number of improvements have already come into effect:


On March 22, 2017, the Honourable Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance, tabled the Government of Canada’s Budget in the House of Commons. The Budget plan contains a number of EI measures.

Services and information

Eliminating new entrant and re-entrant rules

This change eliminates the EI eligibility requirements that restrict access for new entrants and re-entrants to the labour market.

Reducing the two-week waiting period to one week

This eases the financial strain for EI claimants at the beginning of a claim. This change came into effect on January 1, 2017.

New Working While on Claim pilot project starting August 7, 2016

This helps EI claimants stay connected to the labour market and ensure that they benefit from accepting work until August 11, 2018.

Simplifying job search responsibilities for EI claimants

This eases restrictions related to commuting times, offered earnings and types of work.

Helping EI claimants to find work

Enhancing online employment search tools such as Job Bank and Job Match.

Extending EI regular benefits for regions affected by commodities downturn

You may be eligible to receive additional EI benefits if you live in one of the regions identified.


Find out how the Work-Sharing program can help your business avoid layoffs, and allow your employees to keep their jobs and maintain their skills.

What we are doing


My Service Canada Account

Provides convenient and secure access to view and update your Employment Insurance, Canada Pension Plan, and Old Age Security information online.

Employment Insurance Maternity and Parental Benefits

Learn about income programs for individuals who are pregnant, have recently given birth, are adopting a child, or are caring for a newborn.

Job Alerts

Get notified of new job opportunities by email.

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