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Employment Insurance Act (S.C. 1996, c. 23)

Act current to 2021-11-17 and last amended on 2021-09-26. Previous Versions

PART IUnemployment Benefits (continued)

Disqualification and Disentitlement (continued)

Marginal note:Exception

 Notwithstanding anything in this Part, no claimant is disqualified or disentitled under sections 30 to 33 from receiving benefits only because the claimant left or refused to accept employment if, by remaining in or accepting the employment, the claimant would lose the right

  • (a) to become or refrain from becoming a member of an association, organization or union of workers; or

  • (b) to continue to be a member and to observe the lawful rules of an association, organization or union of workers.

Marginal note:Labour disputes

  •  (1) Subject to the regulations, if a claimant loses an employment, or is unable to resume an employment, because of a work stoppage attributable to a labour dispute at the factory, workshop or other premises at which the claimant was employed, the claimant is not entitled to receive benefits until the earlier of

    • (a) the end of the work stoppage, and

    • (b) the day on which the claimant becomes regularly engaged elsewhere in insurable employment.

  • Marginal note:Regulations

    (2) The Commission may, with the approval of the Governor in Council, make regulations for determining the number of days of disentitlement in a week of a claimant who loses a part-time employment or is unable to resume a part-time employment because of the reason mentioned in subsection (1).

  • Marginal note:Suspension of disentitlement

    (3) A disentitlement under this section is suspended during any period for which the claimant

    • (a) establishes that the claimant is otherwise entitled to special benefits or benefits by virtue of section 25; and

    • (b) establishes, in such manner as the Commission may direct, that before the work stoppage, the claimant had anticipated being absent from their employment because of any reason entitling them to those benefits and had begun making arrangements in relation to the absence.

  • Marginal note:Non-application

    (4) This section does not apply if a claimant proves that the claimant is not participating in, financing or directly interested in the labour dispute that caused the stoppage of work.

  • Marginal note:Separate branches of work

    (5) If separate branches of work that are commonly carried on as separate businesses in separate premises are carried on in separate departments on the same premises, each department is, for the purpose of this section, a separate factory or workshop.

Marginal note:Prison inmates and persons outside Canada

 Except as may otherwise be prescribed, a claimant is not entitled to receive benefits for any period during which the claimant

  • (a) is an inmate of a prison or similar institution; or

  • (b) is not in Canada.

Penalties

Marginal note:Penalty for claimants, etc.

  •  (1) The Commission may impose on a claimant, or any other person acting for a claimant, a penalty for each of the following acts or omissions if the Commission becomes aware of facts that in its opinion establish that the claimant or other person has

    • (a) in relation to a claim for benefits, made a representation that the claimant or other person knew was false or misleading;

    • (b) being required under this Act or the regulations to provide information, provided information or made a representation that the claimant or other person knew was false or misleading;

    • (c) knowingly failed to declare to the Commission all or some of the claimant’s earnings for a period determined under the regulations for which the claimant claimed benefits;

    • (d) made a claim or declaration that the claimant or other person knew was false or misleading because of the non-disclosure of facts;

    • (e) being the payee of a special warrant, knowingly negotiated or attempted to negotiate it for benefits to which the claimant was not entitled;

    • (f) knowingly failed to return a special warrant or the amount of the warrant or any excess amount, as required by section 44;

    • (g) imported or exported a document issued by the Commission, or had it imported or exported, for the purpose of defrauding or deceiving the Commission; or

    • (h) participated in, assented to or acquiesced in an act or omission mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (g).

  • Marginal note:Maximum penalty

    (2) The Commission may set the amount of the penalty for each act or omission at not more than

    • (a) three times the claimant’s rate of weekly benefits;

    • (b) if the penalty is imposed under paragraph (1)(c),

      • (i) three times the amount of the deduction from the claimant’s benefits under subsection 19(3), and

      • (ii) three times the benefits that would have been paid to the claimant for the period mentioned in that paragraph if the deduction had not been made under subsection 19(3) or the claimant had not been disentitled or disqualified from receiving benefits; or

    • (c) three times the maximum rate of weekly benefits in effect when the act or omission occurred, if no benefit period was established.

  • Marginal note:Determination under subsection 145(2)

    (3) For greater certainty, weeks of regular benefits that are repaid as a result of an act or omission mentioned in subsection (1) are deemed to be weeks of regular benefits paid for the purposes of the application of subsection 145(2).

  • 1996, c. 23, s. 38
  • 2001, c. 5, s. 8

Marginal note:Penalty for employers, etc.

  •  (1) The Commission may impose on an employer, or any other person acting for an employer or pretending to be or act for an employer, a penalty for each of the following acts if the Commission becomes aware of facts that in its opinion establish that the employer or other person has

    • (a) made, in relation to any matter arising under this Act, a representation that the employer or other person knew was false or misleading;

    • (b) being required under this Act or the regulations to provide information, provided information or made a representation that the employer or other person knew was false or misleading;

    • (c) in relation to any matter arising under this Act, made a declaration that the employer or other person knew was false or misleading because of the non-disclosure of facts;

    • (d) imported or exported a document issued by the Commission, or had it imported or exported, for the purpose of defrauding or deceiving the Commission; or

    • (e) participated in, assented to or acquiesced in an act mentioned in paragraphs (a) to (d).

  • Marginal note:Maximum penalty

    (2) The Commission may set the amount of the penalty for each act at not more than nine times the maximum rate of weekly benefits in effect when the penalty is imposed.

  • Marginal note:Officers, etc., of corporations

    (3) If the Commission becomes aware of facts that in its opinion establish that a corporation has committed an act described in subsection (1) and that any officer, director or agent of the corporation has directed, authorized, assented to, acquiesced in or participated in the act, the Commission may impose a penalty on the officer, director or agent, whether or not a penalty has been imposed on the corporation.

  • Marginal note:Contravention of information requirements

    (4) Notwithstanding subsection (2), if the act involves the provision of information about any matter on which the fulfilment of conditions for the qualification and entitlement for receiving or continuing to receive benefits depends, the Commission may set the amount of the penalty at not more than the greater of

    • (a) $12,000, and

    • (b) the amount of the penalty imposed under section 38 on any person who made a claim for benefits based on the information provided.

  • Marginal note:Major contraventions

    (5) Notwithstanding subsection (2), the Commission may set the amount of the penalty at an amount required or authorized by the regulations if the act is a major contravention, as defined under the regulations.

Marginal note:Limitation on imposition of penalties

 A penalty shall not be imposed under section 38 or 39 if

  • (a) a prosecution for the act or omission has been initiated against the employee, employer or other person; or

  • (b) 36 months have passed since the day on which the act or omission occurred.

Marginal note:Rescission, etc., of penalty

 The Commission may rescind the imposition of a penalty under section 38 or 39, or reduce the penalty, on the presentation of new facts or on being satisfied that the penalty was imposed without knowledge of, or on the basis of a mistake as to, some material fact.

Marginal note:Warning

  •  (1) The Commission may issue a warning instead of setting the amount of a penalty for an act or omission under subsection 38(2) or 39(2).

  • Marginal note:Limitation period

    (2) Notwithstanding paragraph 40(b), a warning may be issued within 72 months after the day on which the act or omission occurred.

Non-assignment of Benefits and Liability to Return Benefits and Pay Penalties

Marginal note:Benefits not assignable

  •  (1) Subject to subsections (2) and (3), benefits are not capable of being assigned, charged, attached, anticipated or given as security and any transaction appearing to do so is void.

  • Marginal note:Exception — recovery of amounts payable

    (2) Any amounts payable under this Act by any person and required to be credited to the Employment Insurance Operating Account may be recovered out of any benefits payable to that person, without affecting any other mode of recovery.

  • Marginal note:Exception — payment to other governments

    (3) If the Government of Canada, a provincial or municipal government or any other prescribed authority pays a person an advance or assistance or a welfare payment for a week that would not be paid if unemployment benefits were paid for that week, and unemployment benefits subsequently become payable to that person for that week, the Commission may, subject to the regulations, deduct from those or any subsequent benefits and pay to the government or the prescribed authority an amount equal to the amount of the advance, assistance or welfare payment paid, if the person had, on or before receiving the advance, assistance or welfare payment, consented to the deduction and payment by the Commission.

  • 1996, c. 23, s. 42
  • 2001, c. 4, s. 74(F)
  • 2010, c. 12, s. 2194
  • 2012, c. 19, s. 606

Marginal note:Liability for overpayments

 A claimant is liable to repay an amount paid by the Commission to the claimant as benefits

  • (a) for any period for which the claimant is disqualified; or

  • (b) to which the claimant is not entitled.

Marginal note:Liability to return overpayment

 A person who has received or obtained a benefit payment to which the person is disentitled, or a benefit payment in excess of the amount to which the person is entitled, shall without delay return the amount, the excess amount or the special warrant for payment of the amount, as the case may be.

Marginal note:Return of benefits by claimant

 If a claimant receives benefits for a period and, under a labour arbitration award or court judgment, or for any other reason, an employer, a trustee in bankruptcy or any other person subsequently becomes liable to pay earnings, including damages for wrongful dismissal or proceeds realized from the property of a bankrupt, to the claimant for the same period and pays the earnings, the claimant shall pay to the Receiver General as repayment of an overpayment of benefits an amount equal to the benefits that would not have been paid if the earnings had been paid or payable at the time the benefits were paid.

Marginal note:Return of benefits by employer or other person

  •  (1) If under a labour arbitration award or court judgment, or for any other reason, an employer, a trustee in bankruptcy or any other person becomes liable to pay earnings, including damages for wrongful dismissal or proceeds realized from the property of a bankrupt, to a claimant for a period and has reason to believe that benefits have been paid to the claimant for that period, the employer or other person shall ascertain whether an amount would be repayable under section 45 if the earnings were paid to the claimant and if so shall deduct the amount from the earnings payable to the claimant and remit it to the Receiver General as repayment of an overpayment of benefits.

  • Marginal note:Return of benefits by employer

    (2) If a claimant receives benefits for a period and under a labour arbitration award or court judgment, or for any other reason, the liability of an employer to pay the claimant earnings, including damages for wrongful dismissal, for the same period is or was reduced by the amount of the benefits or by a portion of them, the employer shall remit the amount or portion to the Receiver General as repayment of an overpayment of benefits.

Marginal note:Limitation

 No amount is payable under section 45, or deductible under subsection 46(1), as a repayment of an overpayment of benefits if more than 36 months have elapsed since the lay-off or separation from the employment in relation to which the earnings are paid or payable.

Marginal note:Liability of directors to pay penalties

  •  (1) If a penalty is imposed on a corporation under section 38 or 39 for an act or omission, the directors of the corporation at the time of the act or omission are, subject to subsections (2) to (7), jointly and severally, or solidarily, liable, together with the corporation, to pay the amount of the penalty.

  • Marginal note:Limitations on liability

    (2) A director is not liable unless

    • (a) a certificate for the amount of the corporation’s liability for the penalty has been registered in the Federal Court under section 126 and execution for that amount has been returned unsatisfied in whole or in part;

    • (b) the corporation has commenced liquidation or dissolution proceedings or has been dissolved and a claim for the amount of its liability has been proved within six months after the date of commencement of the proceedings or the date of the dissolution, whichever is earlier; or

    • (c) the corporation has made an assignment or a bankruptcy order has been made against it under the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act and a claim for the amount of its liability has been proved within six months after the date of the assignment or bankruptcy order.

  • Marginal note:Defence of due diligence

    (3) A director is not liable if the director exercised the degree of care, diligence and skill that a reasonably prudent person would have exercised in comparable circumstances to prevent the act or omission for which the penalty is imposed.

  • Marginal note:Limitation period

    (4) No action or proceedings to recover any amount payable by a director shall be commenced more than six years after the occurrence of the act or omission for which the penalty is imposed.

  • Marginal note:Amount recoverable

    (5) If execution referred to in paragraph (2)(a) has issued, the amount recoverable from a director is the amount remaining unsatisfied after execution.

  • Marginal note:Preference

    (6) If a director pays an amount in respect of a corporation’s liability that is proved in liquidation, dissolution or bankruptcy proceedings,

    • (a) the director is entitled to any preference that Her Majesty in right of Canada would have been entitled to if that amount had not been paid; and

    • (b) if a certificate that relates to that amount has been registered, the director is entitled to an assignment of the certificate to the extent of the director’s payment and the Commission shall make the assignment.

  • Marginal note:Contribution from other directors

    (7) A director who has satisfied a claim under this section is entitled to contribution from the other directors who are liable for the claim.

  • 1996, c. 23, s. 46.1
  • 1999, c. 31, s. 77(F)
  • 2004, c. 25, ss. 133, 197
 
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