Applying for EI is turning out to be a major headache for many in Canada
An estimated 1.5 million Canadians are now unemployed in the wake of coronavirus-related layoffs, but according to one study, one third of them won't be covered by Employment Insurance (EI).
The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives just released an analysis that says 862,000 Canadians won't receive anything from EI or the Canada Emergency Response Benefit.
Why is applying for EI the most complicated thing I’ve ever done— Jacqs (@jacqsnow_) April 3, 2020
But you won't know whether you're part of that one-third until you've actually tried applying for EI — and that's a can of worms on its own.
Me after my daily attempt at trying to understand & navigate through the process of applying for EI and CERB 🙃 pic.twitter.com/xMYm2gnoEf— Nancy (@nancyorford) March 28, 2020
If you're one of the 500,000 Canadians who attempted to claim EI two weeks ago, or the hundreds of thousands more who've tried since then, you'll know that the procedure is a complete and utter nightmare.
Not sure how EI can keep their hours of 830am to 430pm Monday to Friday, when theres so many people applying for it. Doesnt seem to matter what time I call, all I get is a busy signal.— Rob Wheeler (@rmrgcb) April 3, 2020
Even if you follow step-by-step instructions, the system is already over-flooded with other applicants (and in some cases, technical issues) that are sure to slow down the process.
This is what applying for EI in Canada looks like rn. 41 dropped calls and got through once, only to have the call drop before I could speak to a representative pic.twitter.com/3dPYWKV32l— syd muddy 🍉 (@SydMuddy) March 30, 2020
For first-timers, don't even think about calling Service Canada for answers about how to fill out the online form: they can't take your call right now.
Applying for EI for the first time during this pandemic be like pic.twitter.com/bS2N6Ut6to— Emma RC (@knitcat902) March 27, 2020
Then there's determining what type of EI to apply for, or deciding whether you qualify for the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit instead. Have you worked enough hours? Do you even qualify for either?
Who ever is applying for EI online just keep trying the system is so slow and frustrating, it took me more than 2 hours I had to retrieve my application twice. Good luck https://t.co/EbFnfPb2Qn— Meriam (@meru_maj) March 27, 2020
Also make sure to get all your documents together: that includes your Social Insurance Number, banking info, names and addresses of former employees, records of employment, and more.
Applying for ei pic.twitter.com/i4mIvYEwNN— Stuart Verner (@StuartVerner4) March 27, 2020
Technically, filling out the application online should only take about an hour, but evidently most people are spending much more time than that.
And please, for the love of God, don't make a mistake, otherwise you've pretty much lost your chance to get in on EI for good — but yeah, everything's going to be fine.
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