Employment Insurance (EI) is most known for providing temporary income replacement to Canadians:
- who lose their jobs through no fault of their own
- who are unable to work due to sickness or injury
- during maternity and parental leave (except in the case of Quebec residents)
The federal government recently announced an increase in the 2019 EI maximum insurable earnings amount, resulting in a corresponding increase in the EI weekly maximum benefit.
What is Changing
Effective January 1, 2019:
- the maximum annual insurable earnings will increase from $51,700 to 53,100
- the maximum weekly benefit amount will increase from to $547 to $562 (55% maximum insurable earnings)
Visit the Government of Canada website for a complete history of EI insurable earnings by year.
Impact to Employers with Group Insurance Plans
Employers that sponsor a private short-term disability (STD) plan may be eligible for the EI premium reduction program as long as benefits remain as generous as EI sickness benefits. If the maximum benefit is lower than $562 per week, your group insurance policy must be amended if you wish to continue to benefit from the reduced premium rate.