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Employment Insurance

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When will I get my first payment?

You are not covered by EI for the first week after you make your claim. This is called the "waiting period".

EI rules have changed because of COVID-19. As of January 31, 2021, you don’t have to wait one week to make your claim. You can now collect EI starting the day after you lose your job.

These changes are expected to last until September 25, 2021.

After the waiting period, it will then take at least another 2 to 4 weeks, and maybe much longer, before you get your first payment. But your first payment will include benefits going back to the second week.

Most money you get when your job ends, such as vacation pay, termination pay, or severance pay, is considered earnings and may delay the start of your benefits. But you should still apply right away.

If you receive any kind of earnings during your waiting period, some or all of those earnings will be deducted from your first 3 weeks of benefits.