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Locked: Travelling while on EI

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Sep 21, 2004
8302 posts
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Calgary
dlum88 wrote:
Dec 10th, 2010 12:06 pm
The thing i don't get is I am laid off from a full time job but they have been giving me weekends. I report the hours that i work on the weekends and they adjust my payment from that. Its OK for me to go to the USA on the weekend without being penalized but i cannot go during the week? It does not make sense! I shouldn't be penalized just because i cross the border to shop during the week. Not everyone is working Monday to Friday anymore. I don't even want to tell them because i will be severely pissed if they take away my benefits for those few days because i work weekends.

The way the system is set up is that claimant are entitled to EI benefits on weekdays, as it is regular working days for most people.

Nucks wrote:
Dec 10th, 2010 6:57 pm
I am slightly worried about how I took one night class to finish my degree. I always filled in the EI as "always ready to work, not taking any classes", would taking a class outside of business hours to complete my degree give me trouble in any way?


You have nothing to worry about as long as the nightime class falls outside of YOUR regular working hours.
Explore. Dream. Discover. - Mark Twain
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Jan 11, 2008
7041 posts
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GTA
Nucks wrote:
Dec 10th, 2010 6:57 pm
I am slightly worried about how I took one night class to finish my degree. I always filled in the EI as "always ready to work, not taking any classes", would taking a class outside of business hours to complete my degree give me trouble in any way?
Several years ago, I took a course while on EI without any problems and always reported it on my online report and there were no issues. Based on what you posted, it is highly unlikely there would be any issues, however it should have been reported. I don't know whether they cross reference anything with post secondary institutions the way they do for people leaving the country. However, had you reported it would have almost certainly not impacted your benefits at all. These are the questions they use to assess:

http://www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/ei/i ... ning.shtml
If you are taking a part-time course or training program, please visit your Service Canada Centre to provide us with the following details:

1. Do you normally work daytime hours on a Monday to Friday basis, in your usual occupation?
2. Are all of your courses below the university level?
3. Would you leave this course if it conflicted with a full-time job?
4. Are all your courses held in the evening, after 6:00 p.m. or on weekends?
5. Is the total number of hours of attendance equal to or less than 10 hours per week?
6. What are the names of the courses and training institutions?
7. What are the course start and end dates?

Your training or course information will be given to an agent for a decision. If you are not entitled to benefits, you will be notified by telephone or by letter.
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Dec 18, 2008
948 posts
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i am on ei and had to attend an info session recently - the rules have been very tightened up I have noticed - when you do your report now they have changed the one part to have you been out o fthe country anytime monday to friday blah blah blah - it never used to say that it just said have you been out of the country in the two week period

she told us you will lose benefits if you go to the states on a weekday - monday-friday - she said even if you left friday 9 pm you will lose the entire friday benefits, and if you returned monday at 5 am - you would lose the entire monday benefts

you can go on vacation but you have to arrange it with EI ahead of time and you forfeit or suspend the days you are away - you can check with them if the trip was made ahead of time while you were employed as that might be allowable but otherwise you are not entitled to the benefits during that vacation



a coworker laid off with me went to california on a prearranged trip and lost benefits for it by not telling them beforehand - and he mentioned that with passports needed to cross its easily verified by EI if you have crossed the border or not

you also have to report if you are outside your area of employment when you do your reports - ie live in vancouver go to kelowna for a few days
Newbie
Feb 25, 2009
27 posts
North York
b166er1337 wrote:
Dec 10th, 2010 9:11 pm
The way the system is set up is that claimant are entitled to EI benefits on weekdays, as it is regular working days for most people.





You have nothing to worry about as long as the nightime class falls outside of YOUR regular working hours.


OK but you have to report from a Sunday to Saturday so they care about the whole entire week when it comes to reporting what hours you worked. But when it comes to that fact that i am laid off from a full time job and all they are offering me right now is weekends what is that saying? I can fly to the moon on the weekend and not be impacted? They don't care what i do on the weekend? Well they care if i work because i have to report the hours. By this logic the hours and money i make on the weekend should not count? Do you see my point?
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Dec 18, 2008
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you can go to the states on a saturday and come back on a sunday - but you cannot leave friday at 11 pm or 11:30 pm or even 11:59 pm you could leave saturday at 12:02 am though

you are responsible to apply for 5 jobs a week ie one job a day - 5 working days a week

as for work you are allowed to work 20 hours or less and your EI is adjusted the government considers 30 hours a week full time

as for schooling I don't know but If i were you I would report it - i would to make sure its okay - at worst they can charge you and make you pay back the EI you collected

and you can make arrangements to attend training and still collect full EI but you have to apply to do so and you have to arrange it through a caseworker
Newbie
Feb 25, 2009
27 posts
North York
Spongeg wrote:
Dec 11th, 2010 6:00 pm
you can go to the states on a saturday and come back on a sunday - but you cannot leave friday at 11 pm or 11:30 pm or even 11:59 pm you could leave saturday at 12:02 am though

you are responsible to apply for 5 jobs a week ie one job a day - 5 working days a week

as for work you are allowed to work 20 hours or less and your EI is adjusted the government considers 30 hours a week full time

as for schooling I don't know but If i were you I would report it - i would to make sure its okay - at worst they can charge you and make you pay back the EI you collected

and you can make arrangements to attend training and still collect full EI but you have to apply to do so and you have to arrange it through a caseworker


I'm sorry but by all this logic it tells me that they don't care where i go on the weekend so why should i even report my hours that i work on the weekend. Once again the Government has shown is archaic side when it comes to this. People do not just work Monday to Friday anymore. Get with the times!!!!
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Sep 21, 2004
8302 posts
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Calgary
dlum88 wrote:
Dec 11th, 2010 5:57 pm
OK but you have to report from a Sunday to Saturday so they care about the whole entire week when it comes to reporting what hours you worked. But when it comes to that fact that i am laid off from a full time job and all they are offering me right now is weekends what is that saying? I can fly to the moon on the weekend and not be impacted? They don't care what i do on the weekend? Well they care if i work because i have to report the hours. By this logic the hours and money i make on the weekend should not count? Do you see my point?

You are mixing earning with availability. I do see your point that your off-days happen to be others' regular working days. Other posters are mistakened that if you leave Canada at 9PM Friday night, you'd be disentitled for the entire day. That's completely wrong. The regular working hours is considered 9-5. If you had a weekend trip and come back to Canada Monday morning at 7, you are still considered available. Don't ask me why I know... because I used to work there. :razz:
Explore. Dream. Discover. - Mark Twain
Newbie
Feb 25, 2009
27 posts
North York
b166er1337 wrote:
Dec 11th, 2010 6:53 pm
You are mixing earning with availability. I do see your point that your off-days happen to be others' regular working days. Other posters are mistakened that if you leave Canada at 9PM Friday night, you'd be disentitled for the entire day. That's completely wrong. The regular working hours is considered 9-5. If you had a weekend trip and come back to Canada Monday morning at 7, you are still considered available. Don't ask me why I know... because I used to work there. :razz:

Are they really going to find out? I mean i work 20 hrs a week my payment is already reduced. Why would they even be looking at me? That extra from EI offsets having my hours reduced until May when i am back full time. It just doesn't seem fair or right to me. I mean i am working arent i entitled to go shopping with my family? i cant on a weekend because i work but they certainly care about me reporting my hours if i work on the weekend. Im just nervous I don't want to lie but i also don't think i should be punished essentially for this by losing money.
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May 28, 2005
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Spongeg wrote:
Dec 11th, 2010 6:00 pm
you can go to the states on a saturday and come back on a sunday - but you cannot leave friday at 11 pm or 11:30 pm or even 11:59 pm you could leave saturday at 12:02 am though

you are responsible to apply for 5 jobs a week ie one job a day - 5 working days a week

as for work you are allowed to work 20 hours or less and your EI is adjusted the government considers 30 hours a week full time

as for schooling I don't know but If i were you I would report it - i would to make sure its okay - at worst they can charge you and make you pay back the EI you collected

and you can make arrangements to attend training and still collect full EI but you have to apply to do so and you have to arrange it through a caseworker

35 hours or more is considered a full work week - anything thing less they just look at your earnings. And if you leave the country and return within 24 hours you are still entitled to benefits for the day. If you leave Friday 11pm and return before Monday 11pm that is considered 24 hours or less (weekday hours)
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Sep 21, 2004
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Wilmega wrote:
Dec 12th, 2010 10:28 pm
35 hours or more is considered a full work week - anything thing less they just look at your earnings. And if you leave the country and return within 24 hours you are still entitled to benefits for the day. If you leave Friday 11pm and return before Monday 11pm that is considered 24 hours or less (weekday hours)

Again, this statement is not true.
Explore. Dream. Discover. - Mark Twain
Member
Nov 11, 2007
410 posts
34 upvotes
Toronto
The issue re: leaving at 12:02 or whatever to be considered Saturday is NOT entirely true. Before I was laid off, I had planned a trip that would put me in the US for 2 weekdays. I tried to find a creative way to cut that down to 1 day, but it would put me back across the border after midnight.

I called in, and explained this to the woman -- and was told exactly what you were told. That the date of your return is the date of your return, and that if you disagree with them taking away your benefits for that day, you can file an appeal, etc etc etc.

So I figured I might as well go ahead and finish booking my trip to cover the 2 full weekdays.

I called in again to advise them that I'd be going, and the guy one the phone went through a "form" with me that they fill out for when you plan to leave the country. Among the questions he asked? "Are you available to work on the day that you depart" and "are you available to work on the day that you return?". Of course, I COULD have been if I'd gone the creative sleep-deprived route. I felt really stupid, and it was too late at that point to change my plans. I ended up losing a day's benefits when I really didn't have to.

So the system IS designed to allow for you to leave the country in the evening and not lose that day's benefits, and vice versa if your flight lands at 1am on a Monday or something similar. But for whatever reason, they don't want to tell you this upfront.

The more you know....
Deal Addict
May 28, 2005
1806 posts
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b166er1337 wrote:
Dec 12th, 2010 10:31 pm
Again, this statement is not true.

Trust me - its true
Newbie
Mar 31, 2011
2 posts
Coquitlam
My question is if you are on EI and go into the states for a few hours with your cell phone and can be back to Canada quickly if called for an interview are you still classified as not being available for work, as the form asks when e-filing YES/NO were you out of the country. Technically, yes, I was out of the country but I was still available to work.

My interpretation of the wording under "Am I allowed to leave Canada while receiving regular benefits?" is as follows.

The language as written clearly is stating will you be out of Canada for more than 7 days, so does a 3 hour visit to the states to get cheaper gas, cheaper groceries so I can survive on a lower income qualify to answer the question with NO?

I called the border and asked the question, "When a passport is scanned or information is gathered from it, who else is this information shared with" The person sounded a little hesitant to answer this question so I explained I have, the truth, an open file case number with the Coquitlam RCMP pertaining to computer scamming and I am digging for as much information as possible to assist the police with solving this type of cyber crime. He responded "All the information collected stays at the border and is shared with no other agencies", I do not know how much truth there is to this but I would like to find out for sure.

I have gone across a couple of times to get cheaper gas, cheaper groceries for the need of survival. The amount paid by EI is pathetic and it becomes extremely hard to put food on the table, pay the bills and live a seemingly normal life.

Anyone that has, not hearsay, actual proof that the information is being shared I would like to know ASAP.

Thanks

LoWang
Newbie
Mar 17, 2011
20 posts
5 upvotes
Brampton
They will find out if you have left the country. The information IS shared between customs and E.I. You will not be penalized for leaving the country to get gas or groceries if you live by the border and you return within 24 hours. But you should indicate that "yes" you were out of the country. The e-report will advise you to call 1 800 531-7555, the reporting help line. The agent will ask you about you being outside of the country. They will make a note on your file that you were away for 3 hours but were still ready, willing and available for work and complete the report for you. Thus, there will be a note on your claim and you will not run into trouble later on, remember they have up to 7 years to investigate your claim. Just be forthright, it's a pain having to call in but it's better than getting a letter in the mail a few years latter asking you why you didn't report your absence from the country. Trust me, this question has been an area of contention and frustration for workers at the E.I. contact centre but that's just how it is. I work at the E.I. call centre so that's how I know.
Newbie
Apr 1, 2011
1 posts
canada
I just opened an envelope from Revenue Canada this morning:

Information obtained from a Canada Border Services Agency Traveller Declaration Card indicates you travelled outside Canada from Sept 12, 2010 to Sept 19, 2010. Your entitlement to employment Insurance benefits for this period is under review.

The attached questionnaire provides you with the opportunity to explain this absence. Please complete and sign the reverse side of this form and return it to the address above no later than Apr 21, 2011.

Cripes! I have no idea what to put on here!! Yes I was out of the country - I was in Cuba on a ridiculously cheap vacation with a friend, BUT I did have my cell phone and was available by phone. Actually I did return a call from an employment agency. Now I feel so screwed. I can be at home every frigging weekday, respond to job postings every day from workopolis, and not get a single call, yet I am available to work, but for every Executive Assistant applying, there's 200 behind me applying for the same job.

I've paid into Unemployment Benefits for 34 yrs of working full time, and this is the SECOND TIME EVER (1st being 3 months of mat leave in the early 80's), that I've EVER collected any of those benefits BACK TO ME. Now I'm screwed.....
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