2016 Federal Budget update - EI waiting period changes

As previously communicated in the Legislative Matters on April 11, 2016, the 2016 Federal Budget proposed the Employment Insurance (EI) waiting period be reduced from two weeks to one week effective January 1, 2017. Currently, the EI program states, claimants must wait two weeks before they can start receiving benefits.

The budget announcement did not specify whether the proposed change would apply to both unemployment and sickness benefits. If it applies to sickness benefits, we would anticipate changes to the EI premium reduction program, disability waiting period(s)and plan designs that include EI benefits such as, top-up, carve out and wrap around.

We will continue to follow this legislation update closely and will keep you informed as more information becomes available.