Catherine McKenna

Your member of parliament for


Ottawa Centre

Catherine McKenna

Your member of parliament for


Ottawa Centre

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Changes to Employment Insurance Benefits: The Highlights

Today, Minister Duclos announced changes to the Employment Insurance program that will make caregiver and parental benefits more flexible.

Our Government recognizes that every Canadian’s family situation is unique and has different needs. These changes make benefits more inclusive and flexible and will help improve the work-life balance of Canadians.

Here are the changes that will take effect December 3rd, 2017:

  • Pregnant workers can receive EI maternity benefits 12 weeks before their due date, instead of 8 weeks.
  • Parents can choose to receive parental benefits over 12 months or 18 months, allowing for more choice.
  • Individuals who are caring for a critically ill or injured adult can now receive up to 15 weeks of EI.
  • Any family member, not just parents, can receive up to 35 weeks of EI to care for a critically ill child.
  • Medical doctors and nurse practitioners can sign all EI caregiving medical certificates, instead of only specialist medical doctors.