Employment insurance (EI) sickness benefits give people up to 15 weeks of income replacement and is eligible for people who are unable to work because of illness, injury or quarantine.(THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick)

Employment insurance (EI) sickness benefits give people up to 15 weeks of income replacement and is eligible for people who are unable to work because of illness, injury or quarantine.(THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick)

COVID-19: How to apply for employment insurance

You can receive up to 55 per cent of your earnings up to a maximum of $573 a week

As many businesses close up shop and lay off employees to stay afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic, more than 500,000 people applied for employment insurance in the span of a week.

Employment insurance (EI) sickness benefits offer up to 15 weeks of income replacement and people who are unable to work because of illness, injury or quarantine are eligible. You can receive up to 55 per cent of your prior wage to a maximum of $573 a week.

To be eligible to apply for EI, an applicant needs to demonstrate inability to work for medical reasons, or that regular weekly earnings have decreased by more than 40 per cent for at least one week.

Apply online at canada.ca as soon as possible. Those who wait more than four weeks after the last day of work to apply may lose benefits.

To apply online you will need the names and addresses of employers in the last 52 weeks; dates employed with each employer, along with the reasons why you’re no longer employed; full mailing address; social insurance number and banking information.

READ ALSO: B.C. announces $5 billion financial relief for COVID-19 pandemic

The online application takes about an hour to complete and information is saved for up to 72 hours from the time you start.

Due to the ongoing global pandemic of COVID-19, the one-week waiting period of EI benefits has been waived for new claimants currently quarantined so they can be paid for the first week of their claim.

In addition, a new dedicated toll-free phone number has been set up to support inquiries related to waiving the EI sickness benefits waiting period to help speed up the process.

READ ALSO: Closures, revenue, staffing among main impacts of COVID-19 on 90% of B.C. business: survey

People claiming due to being quarantined do not need to provide a medical certificate. People who can’t complete their claim for EI sickness benefits due to quarantine can apply later and have the claim backdated to cover the period of delay.

Applicants need to obtain a record of employment to provide work history for the claim.

Once an application is complete, Service Canada mails a benefits statement that includes a four-digit access code. This code is needed, along with your social insurance number, to access your application and complete biweekly reports.

The biweekly reports are submitted to Service Canada for as long as you receive benefits, this helps show your ongoing eligibility.

Those who don’t qualify for EI may qualify for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, announced earlier this week to help people who have lost their source of income due to COVID-19 and/or related measures.

READ ALSO: Trudeau unveils new $2,000 per month benefit to streamline COVID-19 aid



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Delta Police Department’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Unit: (from left) Const. Joel Thirsk, analyst Jody Johnson and Staff Sgt. Sukh Sidhu. (Delta Police Department photo)
Delta police respond to rising number of hate crimes

Police have received 15 reports so far in 2021, compared to 12 in all of 2020

Marchers supporting Indian farmers rallied in Surrey last month, from Bear Creek Park to Holland Park along King George Boulevard. (File photo: Tom Zillich)
Surrey MP says mayor’s motion to support Indian farmers is his to make

“He has his own sovereignty, right,” Sukh Dhaliwal says

Researchers say residents should leave sleeping bats alone while they exit hibernation. (Cathy Koot photo)
Spring ‘signal’ brings White Rock, Surrey bats out of hibernation

Community Bat Programs of BC says it’s best to leave sleeping bats alone

(Photo: Creative Outlet)
YOUR MONEY: Tax tips for a complicated tax season involving CERB and more

With April 30 tax deadline, ‘it is important to understand the tax implications (benefits) will have’

This map illustrates the number of active COVID-19 cases in Greater Vancouver from April 4 to 10, 2021. (BC Centre for Disease Control image)
Active COVID-19 case in Delta hit new high

262 cases for the week of April 4 to 10, most since BC CDC began releasing weekly city-level data

A woman wears a protective face covering to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 as she walks past the emergency entrance of Vancouver General Hospital in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, April 9, 2021. COVID-19 cases have been on a steady increase in the province of British Columbia over the past week. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Top doctor warns B.C.’s daily cases could reach 3,000 as COVID hospitalizations surge

There are more than 400 people in hospital, with 125 of them in ICU

The father of Aaliyah Rosa planted a tree and laid a plaque in her memory in 2018. (Langley Advance Times files)
Final witness will extend Langley child murder trial into May or June

Lengthy trial began last autumn with COVID and other factors forcing it to take longer than expected

The corner of 96th Avenue and Glover Road in Fort Langley now has traffic signals, and new “touchless” signal activation buttons. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Busy Fort Langley intersection gets ‘touchless’ crosswalk signals

The new traffic light started operation in April

A crossing guard stops traffic as students wearing face masks to curb the spread of COVID-19 arrive at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. A number of schools in the Fraser Health region, including Woodward Hill, have reported cases of the B.1.7.7 COVID-19 variant first detected in the U.K. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID-infected students in Lower Mainland schools transmitting to 1 to 2 others: data

Eight to 13 per cent of COVID cases among students in the Lower Mainland were acquired in schools, B.C. says

Dr. Bonnie Henry – in a B.C. health order that went into effect April 12 – granted WorkSafe inspectors the power to enforce workplace closures with COVID-19 spread. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
24 workplace closures being enforced in Fraser Health under new COVID-19 order

WorkSafe inspectors the power to enforce closures if COVID-19 has spread to 3 or more employees

Maple Ridge Fire and Rescue were conducting training operations at Gold Creek Falls when a firefighter broke their leg. (Eileen Robinson photo - Special to The News)
Firefighter suffers broken leg during swift water rescue practice in Golden Ears park

A training exercise at Maple Ridge waterfall on Wedesday results in mishap

Norm Scott, president of Royal Canadian Legion Branch # 91, is disappointed the Legion does not qualify for COVID financial assistance from the provincial government. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C.’s pandemic aid package passing Legion branches by

Federal non-profit status stymies provincial assistance eligibility

Latest modelling by public health shows cases generated by COVID-19 infections into places where it can spread quickly. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
Industrial sites, pubs, restaurants driving COVID-19 spread in B.C.

Infection risk higher in offices, retail, warehouses, farms

Most Read