Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

Human Resources and Skills Development Canada

June 02, 2009 14:53 ET

Improvements to Employment Insurance Benefit Canadian Businesses and Workers

MARKHAM, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 2, 2009) - The Honourable Diane Finley, Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development, announced today changes to the Employment Insurance (EI) program that will cut red tape for employers and ensure workers get their benefits more quickly.

"We are living in a time of economic uncertainty and the viability of any business is of the utmost importance," said Minister Finley. "The Government of Canada pledged to remove some of the barriers that may affect the productivity of Canadian businesses and we've delivered on that promise."

Employers who file records of employment (ROEs) electronically are no longer required to print a paper copy for their employee, thus reducing paper burden. The electronic ROEs go directly into Service Canada's system and are immediately available to support the corresponding EI claim, thereby improving processing time and getting benefits into the hands of Canadians faster.

The Government continues to take action to ensure the EI program helps businesses and workers affected by the current global economic crisis.

The cost of EI benefits is expected to rise by about $5.3 billion in 2009-10 over last year. EI benefits for 2009-10 are expected to be $2.5 billion higher than at the time of the 2009 Budget.

As well, new timeframes have been implemented to permit employers to issue ROEs in accordance with their pay cycle.

"The Government of Canada has taken a major step in supporting both employers and employees," said Mr. Patrick Culhane, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Payroll Association. "This change to submitting electronic ROEs within five days after the end of the pay period reduces the administrative and compliance burden on employers, while enhancing accuracy and response time for employees who are applying for Employment Insurance benefits."

The ROE is the single most important document in establishing an EI claim - it determines whether individuals qualify for EI, how much they will receive, and for how long. Every year, over one million Canadian employers issue about eight million ROEs.

This news release is available in alternative formats upon request.

Contact Information

  • Office of Minister Finley
    Michelle Bakos
    Press Secretary
    Human Resources and Skills Development Canada
    Media Relations Office