How to Apply for Employment Insurance (EI)


EI is a regular benefit for those who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own and who are ready and able to work, but cannot find a job.

If you have been required to quarantine, the one-week waiting period for EI sickness benefits will be waived for new claimants and you will not be required to provide a medical certificate. If you cannot complete your claim due to quarantine, you may apply later and have your EI claim backdated.

The Government of Canada has also created the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) for workers who lose their jobs, are sick, are quarantined, are caring for someone sick with COVID-19 and working parents who must stay at home without pay to care for children due to school and daycare closures. The CERB provides $2000/month for up to four months .


To see if you are eligible for EI benefits, you need to submit a 60-minute, online application. Generally, you need to have:

  • Been in insurable employment
  • Been without work and pay for at least 7 days in the last 52 weeks
  • Worked the required number of insurance employment hours
  • Lost your job through no fault of your own
  • Shown you are ready and able to work
  • Shown you are actively job searching

Apply for EI benefits as soon as you stop working. There may be a risk of losing benefits if you file your claim more than four weeks after your last day of work.

Apply online at:


You will need your Social Insurance Number (SIN), mother’s maiden name, mailing and residential addresses, banking information, employment information, and highest weeks’ earnings information. You might also need to provide proof of immigration status and your work permit.


For more information on EI, please visit:

For more information on the CERB, please visit: