The federal government recently announced changes to the Employment Insurance (EI) program, new income support benefits, and an additional 4-week extension of the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB).

Following are some of key changes:

Taxable benefit available to those receiving EI of at least $400 per week or $240 per week for extended parental benefits, and regular benefits will be accessible for a min duration of 26 weeks.

EI insurance premium rates will be frozen for two years. This means Canadian workers and businesses will not face immediate increases to costs and payroll deductions due to additional expenses resulting from the pandemic.

The government is proposing to implement new programs that will require legislative approval:

Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB) – provide $400 per week for up to 26 weeks, to workers who are self-employed or are not eligible for EI and who still require income support and who are available and looking for work.

Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB) – provide $500 per week for up to two weeks, for workers who are sick or must self-isolate for reasons related to COVID-19.

Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) – provide $500 per week for up to 26 weeks per household, for eligible Canadians unable to work because they must care for:

A child under age 12 due to the closures of schools or daycares because of COVID-19

A family member with a disability or a dependent because their day program or care facility is closed due to COVID-19

A child, a family member with a disability, or a dependent who is not attending school, daycare, or other care facilities under the advice of a medical professional due to being at high-risk if they contract COVID-19.

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Read Employment E-News – September 2020 – Helping You as the Economy Re-Opens.

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