Is Vacation While on Employment Insurance Possible?

Employment insurance is a Federal insurance program that provides funds and support for unemployed persons. This support is usually temporary as it’s made to provide temporary income support to these unemployed persons while they search for a job or upgrade their skills.

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The Employment Insurance scheme also provides support for persons who take time off work due to irreversible reasons or specific life events such as, 

  • Illness
  • Pregnancy
  • Nursing a newly born baby or adopted baby
  • The loss of a family member
  • A family member who is seriously ill and at the risk of death.
  • A critically ill or injured person

As against the rumor, vacation while on employment insurance is permitted. A beneficiary of the EI scheme must always file a report and this report will come in handy when the need for vacation arises.

Therefore, when an Employment Insurance beneficiary wants to go on a vacation, such a person is free to go as long as it was declared in the EI report that they are away. The beneficiary will not be paid for the weeks he is unavailable.

This means that when a beneficiary is unavailable for Monday to Wednesday, he or she will not be paid from that Monday to Wednesday but you’ll be paid for the other days you were available. 

This will still count as a one-week payment too, but if you won’t be around for the entire week, you will not be paid at all by the EI system,  for the entire week you were absent.

It is important to note that every Employment Insurance has a total of 1-week entitlement and 2 expiry dates. If a beneficiary decides to go on vacation at the 20th week, for 2 weeks, and it was agreed that you’re entitled to 37 weeks of EI benefits,  and then on a Sunday of the two weeks leave, you return.

This means you’ll be available for work the following Monday, you will receive your 21st-week payment after the two weeks vacation. The only repercussion this has on the Employment Insurance scheme is that it has pushed you, the beneficiary two weeks down.

This means all you need to do is make sure you get all the entitlement weeks before the expiry date of the 52 weeks because any unpaid Employment Insurance will not be payable after the duration of the scheme.

Moreover, the system has been designed to freeze your claim if you’re away for 4weeks consecutively, the system has every right to freeze the claims. This can be reactivated when you’re back.

This will take the same procedure as when you had the first online application. Through the application, the scheme will be reactivated after recognizing that you own a claim in the scheme. 

The system has every right to freeze your claim for security reasons if you are away for more than 4 consecutive weeks. Therefore, when you come back, you will have to re-activate your claim (the same procedure as when you file your first online application). 

The application system will re-activate it after recognizing you have an unexpired claim. Although the claims are secure, it will take 21 working days for this. It is important to note that you are supposed to visit the reporting site to know when to start reporting after being away. If the reported issue has been clarified and you were informed of when to start reporting, then it means your claim has been reactivated. 

It is also important to note that the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) will share your travel history with the EI center. Especially if the beneficiary fails to declare the travel details,  the EI integrity office will send you a message stating that they have received your travel details.

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