Employment Insurance

We can help you with legal issues arising from eligibility for employment insurance (EI) benefits. If you have been denied benefits, please contact us immediately as any decision has to be appealed within 30 days. We can also advise you with respect to other benefits that you may be entitled to (such as Ontario Works) while you are pursing EI.

Employment Insurance (EI) provides temporary financial assistance in the form of benefits for some workers. There are different types of benefits:

  • Regular benefits are for workers who have lost their job. However, you may also qualify for benefits during lay-offs.
  • Sickness benefits are for workers who are unable to work due to injury or sickness.
  • Maternity/parental benefits are paid to individuals who are pregnant, have recently given birth, are adopting a child or are caring for a new-born.
  • Compassionate Care benefits are paid to persons who have to be away from work temporarily to provide care or support to a family member who is gravely ill

EI is administered by the federal government through Human Resources and Skills Development Canada (HRSDC).


To qualify for any EI benefits you must have worked a certain number of hours during a specific amount of time, called a qualifying period. You are not eligible if you have quit a job without a good reason or if you have lost your job because of “misconduct.”

The Steps to Justice website has step-by-step information about Employment Insurance and other common legal problems.