EI Special Benefits for Self-Employed People - Apply

5. Apply

You have to wait 12 months from the date of your confirmed registration before applying for EI special benefits

If you are self-employed and are also receiving insurable earnings as an employee, you can choose to Apply for EI special benefits either as a self-employed person or as an employee, as long as you qualify for both.

If you are applying as a self-employed person, we will take into account your earnings from both self-employment and employment as an employee when we calculate your weekly benefit amount, as long as your earnings from both sources are eligible. You must provide your Record of Employment to show details of your earnings as an employee.

If you are applying as an employee, we will use only the earnings from your employment as an employee (including fishing earnings) to calculate your weekly benefit amount. We will not use any of your self-employed earnings. You must provide your Record of Employment (available from your employer) to show details of your earnings as an employee.

To apply for EI special benefits, you must submit an application online. The website takes you step by step through the application process, and provides detailed instructions on how to complete the form.

You can apply:

  • At home
    If you have access to the Internet at home, you can apply for EI benefits from there—24 hours a day, seven days a week. You can also use the computer of a friend or a family member.
  • At a public Internet access site
    There are various locations in your community, such as public libraries, where you can access the Internet to apply for EI benefits.
  • At a Service Canada Centre
    You can apply online at any Service Canada Centre using one of the many Internet kiosks available. To find the Service Canada Centre nearest you, visit the Service Canada website.

For more information on how to apply for EI benefits, see the publication called How to Apply for Employment Insurance Benefits on the Service Canada website.

When you apply for EI benefits, be sure to sign up for direct deposit to get your payments as quickly as possible. When you use direct deposit, your EI payments are deposited automatically into your bank account two business days after we process your EI report.

If you do not sign up for direct deposit at the time you complete your EI application, you can sign up any time after you apply through My Service Canada Account.

Privacy Notice Statement

The information you provide is collected under the authority of the Employment Insurance Act to determine your eligibility for Employment Insurance benefits (including the Family Supplement), employment benefits, employment services, and training.

The Social Insurance Number (SIN) is collected under the authority of the Employment Insurance Act and in accordance with the Treasury Board Secretariat Directive on the SIN, which lists the Employment Insurance program as an authorized user of the SIN. The SIN will be used as a file identifier to determine your eligibility for Employment Insurance benefits (including the Family Supplement), employment benefits, employment services, and training.

Since your privacy is important to us, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) confirms your identity by comparing the information you submit to the information contained in your Social Insurance Number record.

Completion of the EI application for benefits online is voluntary; however, failure to complete this application will result in your not being considered for the aforementioned benefits.

For those applying for Employment Insurance (EI) self-employment benefits, information may be shared with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) for the administration of the Income Tax Act. The CRA may provide information concerning your net self-employment earnings with the income information for the current year and two prior calendar years (strictly for individuals identified by ESDC), in order to allow ESDC to determine or verify the individual's entitlement; to validate the income information declared on the claim; and to determine or amend the EI weekly benefit rate.

The information may also be shared with your provincial or territorial government and its authorized third-party service providers for the administration of employment benefits and support measures, including training, provided in accordance with a Labour Market Development Agreement.

The Information may also be shared with the Province of Quebec for the administration of the Employment Insurance Act respecting parental insurance.

The information you provide may be used or disclosed for policy analysis, research, and/or evaluation purposes. In order to conduct these activities, various sources of information under the custody and control of ESDC may be linked. However, these additional uses and/or disclosures of your personal information will never result in an administrative decision being made about you.

Your personal information is administered in accordance with the Employment Insurance Act and the Privacy Act. You have the right to the protection of, and access to, your personal information. It will be retained in the Personal Information Bank(s) "ESDC-PPU-150", "Insurance Claim File-Local Office,"ESDC-PPU-293", "Employment Benefits and Support Measures" and/or ESDC-PPU-323 "Registration for the Employment Insurance Measure for Self-Employed People" and will be used and disclosed in accordance with the conditions listed therein and retained for the period of time required by the Employment Insurance Act.

Instructions for obtaining this information are outlined in the government publication entitled Info Source. Info Source may also be accessed online at any Service Canada Centre.

By starting this application, you consent to the terms of the above privacy notice statement.

Start application

Date modified: