Thursday, August 27, 2009

Employment Insurance for Occasional Teachers

Occasional teachers may apply for employment insurance with Service Canada. CLICK HERE for information on the terms under which you might be considered if applying. What should be a nice security net during times when teaching is not an option (summer and March break) is a more difficult process than it makes itself out to be - but if you do have all your documentation in order, I guess it would be a somewhat reliable source of income. Consider this an advice piece, please learn from my mistake.

I do have to commend Service Canada for assembling an online application process that is very easy to use and leaves little room for error. CLICK HERE for the application in English. Service Canada indicates that once your application is processed and sent for approval there is a minimum 28 day waiting period. Here is my caution: be sure that you have all of your documentation collected and prepared - records of employment especially - for when you complete the application. My application, completed at the end of July, is still hanging in limbo as I await a final record of employment from the University I worked for last year - a case of "check back early next week". I've contacted Service Canada and unfortunately no further action can be taken with my application until this R.O.E. is acquired. In my case, because I've worked several jobs (camps, tutoring, part-time contracts with StatsCan) I forgot about this position and did not foresee any serious difficulty in collecting the R.O.E. It will likely be nearly October before I find out if I've qualified, and closer to November before I see any compensation for my time unemployed this summer.

So, if you're as forgetful as I am, review your employment history over the past year well before you begin your application for E.I. Luckily, and this I did not know, you can request that your R.O.E.'s are uploaded directly to Service Canada, and you can access them online after setting up an account - CLICK HERE to do that.

On an unrelated note, it felt like fall today in Ottawa. It's right around the bend.

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