(Ottawa) The federal government is suspending a one-week waiting period for EI claims.
The change is primarily effective January 31, with Canadians being able to reap the benefits as soon as they apply. The change is expected to take effect until September 25, when the temporary EI measures and three “pandemic benefits” expire.
A one-week conditional suspension applies to general EI benefits, fishing benefits and special benefits such as maternity and parental leave.
The government has already abolished the waiting period for claims for health insurance sickness benefits made after September 27, 2020.
The wait-and-see waiver for all applicants will reduce the “huge financial burden on workers” and support them quickly “when they need it most”, Employment and Labor Development Minister Carla Qualtru said in a statement Friday.
According to the latest figures from Ottawa, about 2.3 million people currently enjoy EI benefits.