EI Regular Benefits - How much you could receive

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3. How much you could receive

We cannot tell you exactly how much you will receive before we process your application. For most people, the basic rate for calculating EI benefits is 55% of your average insurable weekly earnings, up to a maximum amount. As of January 1, 2016, the maximum yearly insurable earnings amount is $50,800. This means that you can receive a maximum amount of $537 per week

How long you could receive EI regular benefits

You can receive EI from 14 weeks up to a maximum of 45 weeks, depending on the unemployment rate in your region at the time of filing your claim and the amount of insurable hours you have accumulated in the last 52 weeks or since your last claim, whichever is shorter.

Maximum number of weeks of EI Regular benefits payable
Number of hours of insurable employment Regional Unemployment Rate
< 6% 6.1%

7.0%
7.1%

8.0%
8.1%

9.0%
9.1%

10.0%
10.1%

11.0%
11.1%

12.0%
12.1%

13.0%
13.1%

14.0%
14.1%

15.0%
15.1%

16.0%
> 16%
420-454 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 26 28 30 32
455-489 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 24 26 28 30 32
490-524 0 0 0 0 0 0 23 25 27 29 31 33
525-559 0 0 0 0 0 21 23 25 27 29 31 33
560-594 0 0 0 0 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34
595-629 0 0 0 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34
630-664 0 0 17 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35
665-699 0 15 17 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35
700-734 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36
735-769 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36
770-804 15 17 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37
805-839 15 17 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37
840-874 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38
875-909 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38
910-944 17 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39
945-979 17 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39
980-1,014 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40
1,015-1,049 18 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40
1,050-1,084 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41
1,085-1,119 19 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41
1,120-1,154 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42
1,155–1,189 20 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42
1,190–1,224 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41 43
1,225–1,259 21 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41 43
1,260–1,294 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44
1,295–1,329 22 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44
1,330–1,364 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41 43 45
1,365–1,399 23 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41 43 45
1,400–1,434 24 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 45
1,435–1,469 25 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41 43 45 45
1,470–1,504 26 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 45 45
1,505–1,539 27 29 31 33 35 37 39 41 43 45 45 45
1,540–1,574 28 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 45 45 45
1,575–1,609 29 31 33 35 37 39 41 43 45 45 45 45
1,610–1,644 30 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 45 45 45 45
1,645–1,679 31 33 35 37 39 41 43 45 45 45 45 45
1,680–1,714 32 34 36 38 40 42 44 45 45 45 45 45
1,715–1,749 33 35 37 39 41 43 45 45 45 45 45 45
1,750–1,784 34 36 38 40 42 44 45 45 45 45 45 45
1,785–1,819 35 37 39 41 43 45 45 45 45 45 45 45
1,820+ 36 38 40 42 44 45 45 45 45 45 45 45

The number of weeks you may receive benefits does not change even if you move to another region after your benefit period begins.

Calculation of benefits

The amount of weekly benefits is calculated as follows:

  • We calculate your total insurable earnings for the required number of best weeks (the weeks that you earned the most money, including insurable tips and commissions) based on the information you provide and/or your Record(s) of Employment
  • We determine the divisor (number of best weeks) that corresponds to your regional rate of unemployment
  • We divide your total insurable earnings for your best weeks by your required number of best weeks
  • We then multiply the result by 55% to obtain the amount of your weekly benefits.

In regions of Canada with the highest rates of unemployment, we will calculate using the best 14 weeks; in regions of Canada with the lowest rates of unemployment, we will use the best 22 weeks. In other regions, the number of weeks used to calculate benefits will be somewhere between 14 and 22, depending on the unemployment rate in those regions.

Number of Variable Best Weeks calculation rates
Regional rate of unemployment Required weeks
6% or less 22
6.1% to 7% 21
7.1% to 8% 20
8.1% to 9% 19
9.1% to 10% 18
10.1% to 11% 17
11.1% to 12% 16
12.1% to 13% 15
13.1% or more 14

To find out the rate of unemployment in your region, visit EI Program Characteristics.

Once the weekly benefit rate is established, it will remain unchanged over the life of your claim.

Family Supplement

If your net family income does not exceed $25,921 per year, you have children and your spouse receives the Canada Child Tax Benefit, you are considered a member of a low-income family. Therefore, you may be eligible to receive the EI family supplement.

The family supplement rate is based on:

  • your net family income up to a maximum of $25,921 per year; and
  • the number of children in the family and their ages.

The family supplement may increase your benefit rate up to 80% of your average insurable earnings. If you and your spouse claim EI benefits at the same time, only one of you can receive the family supplement. It is generally better for the spouse with the lower benefit rate to receive the supplement.

As your income level rises, the Family Supplement gradually decreases, so that when the maximum income of $25,921 is reached no supplement is payable.

Taxable EI benefits

EI benefits are taxable, no matter what type of benefits you receive. Federal and provincial or territorial taxes, where applicable, will therefore be deducted from your payment.

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