Prepared by: Chinese and Southeast Asian Legal Clinic
Current as of: February 22, 2021
Q: What change is proposed for Employment Insurance (EI) regular benefits?
On February 19, 2021, the Government of Canada proposed that the number of weeks available for EI regular benefits be increased by up to an additional 24 weeks. The new maximum number of weeks would be 50 weeks (up from 26 weeks). This extension would be available for workers who claim EI regular benefits between September 27, 2020 and September 25, 2021.
The Government is also proposing a change for self-employed workers who have opted in to the EI program to access special benefits. These self-employed workers who opted-in to the EI program would be able to use a 2020 earnings threshold of $5,000, compared to the previous threshold of $7,555 to access special benefits (including maternity/parental benefits, compassionate benefits). This change would be retroactive to EI claims established as of January 3, 2021 and would apply until September 25, 2021.
This is especially important for workers whose EI regular benefits will be exhausted in late-March 2021.
You can apply for EI benefits through Service Canada.
Q: What change is proposed for the Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB)?
The Government of Canada proposed that the CRB would be extended by an additional 12 weeks to a maximum of 38 weeks (or 19 eligibility periods) for workers who qualify for CRB.
This is especially important for workers whose CRB runs out in late-March 2021.
You can apply for the CRB through the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
Q: What change is proposed for the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB)?
The Government of Canada is proposing that the CRCB be extended by an additional 12 weeks to a maximum of 38 weeks (or 19 eligibility periods), per household, for workers who qualify for CRCB.
You can apply for the CRCB through the CRA.
Q: What change is proposed for Canada Recovery Sickness Benefits (CRSB)?
The proposed extension for CRSB is to increase the number of weeks from the current 2 weeks to 4 weeks.
Additional access to CRSB would mean that workers would not have to choose between going to work sick and maintaining their income for daily life.
You can apply for the CRSB through the CRA.
Do you qualify for COVID-19 benefits (CRB, CRCB, CRSB)?
To see if you qualify for the COVID-19 federal benefits, go to our post:
- English: https://csalc.ca/new-covid-19-benefits-canada-recovery-benefit-canada-recovery-sickness-benefit-canada-recovery-caregiving-benefit/
- Tiếng Việt: https://csalc.ca/vi/new-covid-19-benefits-canada-recovery-benefit-canada-recovery-sickness-benefit-canada-recovery-caregiving-benefit/
- Traditional Chinese: https://csalc.ca/zh-hant/new-covid-19-benefits-canada-recovery-benefit-canada-recovery-sickness-benefit-canada-recovery-caregiving-benefit/
- Simplified Chinese (with video): https://csalc.ca/zh-hans/new-covid-19-benefits-canada-recovery-benefit-canada-recovery-sickness-benefit-canada-recovery-caregiving-benefit/
Do you qualify for Employment Insurance?
To see if you qualify for EI under the new temporary changes as of September 27, 2020, go to our post:
- English: https://csalc.ca/updates-cerb-employment-insurance-programs-august-2020/
- Tiếng Việt: https://csalc.ca/vi/updates-cerb-employment-insurance-programs-august-2020/
- Traditional Chinese (with video): https://csalc.ca/zh-hant/updates-to-cerb-and-employment-insurance-programs-august-2020/
- Simplified Chinese (with video): https://csalc.ca/zh-hans/updates-to-cerb-and-employment-insurance-programs-august-20