Personal Finance

Can you apply for EI after CERB? did not qualify before

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  • Jul 27th, 2020 10:00 am
[OP]
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Dec 10, 2004
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Can you apply for EI after CERB? did not qualify before

Asking for an elderly neighbor as I could not answer and he said he tried calling some government number, but could not understand. His English is not very good at all. He is about 60, if that matters.
Basically, he had some kind of side business, working for himself as self employed. Then Covid happened and business completely gone.
He did not pay EI or CPP in the last 10 years.

He was receiving CERB and for the last 2 months working as a contractor, with gross of about $700( about 40-hours a month) and his CPP and EI premiums were taken from his cheques.. He is wondering if after his last CERB cheque in August he can apply for EI as his business is completely destroyed and now that he paid EI premiums, he may be qualified for EI benefits. Any info on that? If there's a phone number, I can try calling with him being there too. I just don't know anything about it as I've never paid any CPP or EI and don't know how the whole thing works.
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Deal Addict
Jun 12, 2008
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Ripley
Did he file income tax last year? For 2019? If he didn't he is disqualified from everything. Also he cannot collect EI because he has not worked enough hours.

Might be a good idea for both of you to start filing taxes.
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Oct 13, 2007
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dazz wrote: Asking for an elderly neighbor as I could not answer and he said he tried calling some government number, but could not understand. His English is not very good at all. He is about 60, if that matters.
Basically, he had some kind of side business, working for himself as self employed. Then Covid happened and business completely gone.
He did not pay EI or CPP in the last 10 years.

He was receiving CERB and for the last 2 months working as a contractor, with gross of about $700( about 40-hours a month) and his CPP and EI premiums were taken from his cheques.. He is wondering if after his last CERB cheque in August he can apply for EI as his business is completely destroyed and now that he paid EI premiums, he may be qualified for EI benefits. Any info on that? If there's a phone number, I can try calling with him being there too. I just don't know anything about it as I've never paid any CPP or EI and don't know how the whole thing works.
You will need to have accumulated between 420 and 700 hours of insurable employment during the qualifying period to be entitled to receive EI regular benefits.

The hours are based on the regional rate of unemployment. To qualify with 420 hours, the regional rate of unemployment must be 13.1% or more. Since the whole thing is typically convoluted like most government programs, the best thing to do is just apply for it and let them determine your eligibility.

Sure, you can always call, wait indefinitely on hold and get a generic answer that may differ on another day with another rep.
[OP]
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Dec 10, 2004
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zeddy wrote: Did he file income tax last year? For 2019? If he didn't he is disqualified from everything. Also he cannot collect EI because he has not worked enough hours.

Might be a good idea for both of you to start filing taxes.
You are making prejudice irrelevant assumptions for some unknown reason. Then, childishly and for unknown reason you bring ME into it, saying I did not file taxes. If you want to talk off topic, there's a forum for that and not when a serious question is being asked, trying to help someone in need. If you want to help, give an advice he can use. If not, just move on dude.
Last edited by dazz on Jul 21st, 2020 3:10 am, edited 2 times in total.
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[OP]
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Dec 10, 2004
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starchoice wrote: You will need to have accumulated between 420 and 700 hours of insurable employment during the qualifying period to be entitled to receive EI regular benefits.

The hours are based on the regional rate of unemployment. To qualify with 420 hours, the regional rate of unemployment must be 13.1% or more. Since the whole thing is typically convoluted like most government programs, the best thing to do is just apply for it and let them determine your eligibility.

Sure, you can always call, wait indefinitely on hold and get a generic answer that may differ on another day with another rep.
Based on the info I have it seems he worked 80 hours so far and may( or may not) have 40 more. Far off the 400. Based on that, it does not make him qualify?
Then I am personally curious as to why he was paying EI in the first place?
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Jan 31, 2006
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dazz wrote: Based on the info I have it seems he worked 80 hours so far and may( or may not) have 40 more. Far off the 400. Based on that, it does not make him qualify?
Then I am personally curious as to why he was paying EI in the first place?
If EI is made available without a criteria or qualification then everyone who paid into it will simple wish to be let go, quit, and get $ then sit at home watching netflix.
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Jan 19, 2017
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dazz wrote: Asking for an elderly neighbor as I could not answer and he said he tried calling some government number, but could not understand. His English is not very good at all. He is about 60, if that matters.
Basically, he had some kind of side business, working for himself as self employed. Then Covid happened and business completely gone.
He did not pay EI or CPP in the last 10 years.

He was receiving CERB and for the last 2 months working as a contractor, with gross of about $700( about 40-hours a month) and his CPP and EI premiums were taken from his cheques.. He is wondering if after his last CERB cheque in August he can apply for EI as his business is completely destroyed and now that he paid EI premiums, he may be qualified for EI benefits. Any info on that? If there's a phone number, I can try calling with him being there too. I just don't know anything about it as I've never paid any CPP or EI and don't know how the whole thing works.
If he was self employed and filed income tax for 2019, then he would have paid EI & CPP, for both the employer & employee portions on his income tax return. He probably applied & received CERB without all qualifications(i.e. he didn't have $5000 self employment income in 2019 because he didn't file income tax for 2019). CRA will audit & send him the pay back request.
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Jun 12, 2008
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Ripley
dazz wrote: You are making prejudice irrelevant assumptions for some unknown reason. Then, childishly and for unknown reason you bring ME into it, saying I did not file taxes. If you want to talk off topic, there's a forum for that and not when a serious question is being asked, trying to help someone in need. If you want to help, give an advice he can use. If not, just move on dude.
Pretty sure I answered your questions. The first requirement to receive CERB is that you filed income tax in 2019. Same with any government assistance pre & post Covid.
You also said he and you hadn't paid EI or CPP premiums before this. The only way that is possible is if neither of you have filed income tax before. The friend you are helping is a good example of why you should file your income taxes and contribute to CPP and EI every year. Then people can qualify for help when needed. You are the one making assumptions in my tone which weren't there. I work in payroll, work at income tax return clinics and am female. Guess you were the only one making wrongful assumptions here. I was trying to educate on why he doesn't qualify for getting assistance. I can see from your other responses that is not what you wanted.
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Sep 3, 2019
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Just wanted to point out that it's very kind and generous of you to help this elderly man out :) World needs more of this
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Oct 13, 2007
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dazz wrote: Then I am personally curious as to why he was paying EI in the first place?
If you’re an employee, you cannot simply opt-out of paying EI premium. It’s like insurance, you are not just paying for yourself. Typically, you start a job and who knows how long you will be there? The benefits result from your cumulative contributions to determine your eligibility.
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Dec 6, 2016
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Calgary, AB
zeddy wrote: Pretty sure I answered your questions. The first requirement to receive CERB is that you filed income tax in 2019. Same with any government assistance pre & post Covid.
You also said he and you hadn't paid EI or CPP premiums before this. The only way that is possible is if neither of you have filed income tax before. The friend you are helping is a good example of why you should file your income taxes and contribute to CPP and EI every year. Then people can qualify for help when needed. You are the one making assumptions in my tone which weren't there. I work in payroll, work at income tax return clinics and am female. Guess you were the only one making wrongful assumptions here. I was trying to educate on why he doesn't qualify for getting assistance. I can see from your other responses that is not what you wanted.
There is no requirement to have the 2019 return filed in order to receive CERB.
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Sep 5, 2017
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cgtlky wrote: If EI is made available without a criteria or qualification then everyone who paid into it will simple wish to be let go, quit, and get $ then sit at home watching netflix.
Not true. As someone with severe chronic illness who is medically forced to be home 95% of the time, it's been angering me for months seeing all the people who normally work full time complaining that they're bored to tears being home all the time... Trust me, people will still work, even if ubi is ever implemented like some have talked about turning cerb into, the healthy will still work because it won't even be equal to full time at minimum wage
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Dec 25, 2017
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starchoice wrote: Sure, you can always call, wait indefinitely on hold and get a generic answer that may differ on another day with another rep.
I think the generic answer (and this is one I received when phoning in before) is to apply for EI anyway, even if they are not sure if they qualify. It’s quite hard for them to determine if you qualify until you submit an application for EI benefits and they assess it.
[OP]
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Dec 10, 2004
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Vancouver
I got him in touch with program that helps elderly, low income,etc and they will be helping him with a bunch of needs and have a translator who will help with the call as well, if needed.

PS. I pay taxes. I use accountant so I don't know what deductions are taken as I concentrate my time on my business. Every accountant knows that - a lot of people are clueless about that stuff. Same with that guy. He doesn't know what he is paying. He barely speaks English...

Thanks for al the tips

Cheers
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