COVID-19: How to Access Support

COVID-19: How to Access Support

Updated: January 19, 2022

Please note, this page is intended to serve as a quick reference guide. Details on benefits may have changed. We encourage you to read through the websites linked on this page for more information.

Support for individuals

Employment Insurance (EI) Regular Benefits:

EI provides regular benefits to individuals who lose their jobs through no fault of their own and are available for and able to work, but can’t find a job.

You will need to demonstrate that you:

  • Have been without work and without pay for at least 7 consecutive days in the last 52 weeks
  • Have worked for the required number of insurable employment hours in the last 52 weeks or since the start of your EI claim, whichever is shorter
  • Are ready, willing, and capable of working each day
  • Are actively looking for work


Exception: In some cases, the qualifying period may be extended to a maximum of 104 weeks if you weren’t employed in insurable employment or if you weren’t receiving EI benefits

Until September 24, 2022, you only need to have accumulated 420 hours of insurable employment during your qualifying period to qualify for EI benefits.

To prove your eligibility and to receive payments you may be entitled to, you’re required to complete bi-weekly reports by internet or telephone.

If you lose or quit your job because you don’t comply with your employer’s mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy, you won’t be eligible for EI regular benefits.

For more information: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/ei-regular-benefit/eligibility.html

 

EI Sickness Benefits:

EI sickness provides benefits of up to 15 weeks of financial assistance if you can’t work for medical reasons

You will need to demonstrate that:

  • You have a medical certificate showing you are unable to work due to medical reasons
  • Regular weekly earnings from work have decreased by more than 40% for at least 1 week
  • You accumulated 420 insured hours of work in the 52 weeks before the start of your claim or since the start of your last claim, whichever is shorter

Apply as soon as possible after you stop working. If you apply more than 4 weeks after your last day of work, you may lose benefits.

Until September 24, 2022, you only need to have accumulated 420 hours of insurable employment during your qualifying period to qualify for EI benefits.

For more information: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/benefits/ei/ei-sickness.html

 

Canada Worker Lockdown Benefit (CWLB)

CWLB provides temporary income support to employed and self-employed people who cannot work due to a COVID-19 lockdown designated for your region.

If eligible, you can receive $270 (after taxes withheld) for each 1-week period. You may apply for any weeks your region is eligible between October 24, 2021 and May 7, 2022.

You must meet all of the following conditions for the 1-week period you’re applying for:

  • Reside in Canada
  • You were present in Canada
  • At least 15 years of age
  • Valid Social Insurance Number (SIN)
  • You did not receive a different benefit for the same period
  • You earned at least $5,000 in 2020, 2021, or in the 12 months before the date you apply
  • You filed a 2020 tax return
  • A region where you live, work, or provide a service is designated as a COVID-19 lockdown region
  • A designated COVID-19 lockdown in your region resulted in one of the following:
    • You lost your job and were unemployed
    • You were self-employed but unable to continue your work
    • You were employed or self employed, but had a 50% reduction in your average weekly income as compared to the previous year
  • You did not do any of the following, unless it was reasonable to do so:
    • Quit your job
    • Voluntarily stop working
    • Turn down reasonable work
    • Refuse to return to work when asked by your employed
    • Fail to resume self-employment when it was possible
  • You got the COVID-19 vaccine, or it is not required to continue your work
  • You were not self-isolating or in quarantine due to international travel
  • You will file your 2021 and 2022 tax returns by December 31, 2023 if you receive the benefit for a period starting in 2022
  • You will file your 2021 tax return by December 31, 2022 if you receive the benefit for a period starting in 2021

If you were able to work from home (telework), you will not be eligible for the CWLB.

You must apply for each 1-week period separately. The application process is the same each time.

For more information: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/worker-lockdown-benefit/cwlb-who-apply.html

Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB)

The CRCB provides income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are unable to work because they must care for their child under 12 years old or a family member who needs supervised care.

If you are eligible for the CRCB, your household can receive $450 (after taxes withheld) for each 1-week period. Each household may apply for up to a total of 44 weeks between September 27, 2020 and May 7, 2022.

You must meet all the following conditions for the 1-week period you’re applying for:

  • You are unable to work at least 50% of your scheduled work week because you are caring for a family member
  • You are caring for your child under 12 years old or a family member who needs supervised care because they are at home for one of the following reasons:
    • Their school, daycare, day program, or care facility is closed or unavailable to them due to COVID-19
    • Their regular care services are unavailable due to COVID-19
    • The person under your care is:
      • Sick with COVID-19 or has symptoms of COVID-19
      • At risk of serious health complications if they get COVID-19, as advised by a medical professional
      • Self-isolating due to COVID-19
    • You did not apply for or receive other benefits for the same period
    • You reside in Canada
    • You were present in Canada
    • At least 15 years of age
    • Valid Social Insurance Number (SIN)
    • You earned at least $5,000 in 2019, 2020, 2021, or in the 12 months before the date you apply
    • You are the only person in your household applying for the benefit for the week
    • You are not receiving paid leave from your employer for the same period
    • You were not self-isolating or in quarantine due to international travel

You must apply for each 1-week period separately. The application process is the same each time. Each period starts on a Sunday and end on the following Saturday.

You may apply for any eligible 1-week period for up to 60 days after that period has ended.

If you started caring for a family member part way through a period, you can only apply for that period if you missed more than 50% of that work week. If you miss less than that, you need to wait to apply for the next eligibility period.

For more information: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/recovery-caregiving-benefit/crcb-who-apply.html

 

Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB)

The CRSB gives income support to employed and self-employed individuals who are unable to work because they are sick or need to self-isolate due to COVID-19, or have an underlying health condition that puts them at greater risk of getting COVID-19.

If you are eligible for the CRSB, you can receive $450 (after taxes withheld) for a 1-week period.

You may apply for up to a total of 6 weeks between September 27, 2020 and May 7, 2022

You must meet all the following conditions for the 1-week period you’re applying for:

  • You are unable to work at least 50% of your scheduled work week because you’re self-isolating for one of the following reasons:
    • You are sick with COVID-19 or may have COVID-19
    • You are advised to self-isolate due to COVID-119
    • You have an underlying health condition that puts you at greater risk of getting COVID-19
    • You did not apply for or receive other benefits
    • You reside in Canada
    • You were present in Canada
    • At least 15 years of age
    • You have a valid Social Insurance Number (SIN)
    • You earned at least $5,000 in 2019, 2020, 2021, or in the 12 months before the date you apply
    • You are not receiving paid leave from your employer for the same period
    • You were not self-isolating or in quarantine due to international travel

Your payment amount will be the same for each period you’ve applied for, even if you worked for part of the week. To be eligible, you must have missed more than 50% of your work week.

You may apply for any eligible 1-week period for up to 60 days after that period has ended.

For more information: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/benefits/recovery-sickness-benefit/crsb-who-apply.html

 

 

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