(Archive copy for historical purposes only)

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Unemployment Insurance/Social Assistance Interface


Persons who have applied for U.I.C. benefits may be granted short-term (STA) benefits (see section 5.1) pending receipt of the first U.I. payment, or at any other time when there is undue delay in the receipt of U.I. benefits (provided they otherwise qualify for STA and agree to an assignment of benefit); the period covered by such assistance should not exceed two weeks at any one time.    Policy 121.06

Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC) accepts assignments of U.I. benefits in cases where there is overlapping of benefit periods for U.I. and STA.  Overlapping starts with the beginning of the third week following the commencement of the U.I. benefit period; however, no (recoverable) overpayment occurs unless overlapping extends beyond the end of the fourth week (from the date of the claimant's application for U.I.).

For persons who apply for assistance on termination of U.I. benefits and who were assisted on an assignment of benefit at any time during the benefit period (including those who received a social assistance supplement), overlapping ends two weeks after the expiry date of U.I. benefits (to compensate for the two weeks' overlapping permitted earlier); where no assistance was granted during the U.I. waiting period, the applicant is considered in accordance with general policy for employables.  Where a U.I.C. assignment has been accepted and STA granted during the waiting period is inadequate to maintain the applicant's family pending receipt of the next U.I. payment, additional assistance may be granted on an emergency basis; such assistance must be set up as an overpayment.

Prince Edward Island

Applicants shall accept responsibility for Unemployment Insurance penalties resulting from such actions as not accepting available employment, abandoning work or being fired without adequate reason.  Benefits may be paid in such situations only if there are extenuating circumstances justifying the applicant's action, and with the approval of the designated supervisor.    Policy 13-4-7

An applicant who is burdened with an unreasonably high unemployment insurance overpayment recovery rate shall attempt to negotiate a lower rate with appropriate unemployment insurance officials; workers may find it necessary to intervene on behalf of clients who are unsuccessful in such attempts.    Policy 13-4-7

Nova Scotia - Provincial

Unemployment Insurance benefits, either received or anticipated, are considered as unearned income and are totally chargeable against an applicant's budgetary requirements.  Provisions concerning lump sum and retroactive payments of unearned income are covered in section 3.1.    Regulation 3(1)(j,p)

Nova Scotia - Municipal

A form is sent to the Unemployment Insurance Commission to verify if a client is in receipt of U.I. benefits and the amount thereof; where an applicant is awaiting retroactive benefits, the client is required to authorize assignment of benefits in an amount equal to any Municipal Assistance grants during the waiting period.    Policy

New Brunswick

U.I. benefits are considered as income and the full amount is considered when calculating the budget deficit of an applicant; where an applicant who is awaiting U.I. benefits declares income from part-time or full-time employment, no exemption is allowed against that income.  Provisions concerning clients awaiting U.I. benefits are covered in section 2.6.   Regulation 7(2.1); Policy p. 52

In April 1993, the New Brunswick Department of Income Assistance (now Human Resources Development) entered into an agreement with Employment and Immigration Canada (Human Resources Development Canada) to have social assistance payments reimbursed for the time period during which U.I. benefits would have been payable.  An applicant is required to sign the Assignment of Benefits form in order to be eligible for income assistance after the two-week U.I. waiting period.   Provincial Contact


The benefit payable to a single person or a family is reduced, for a period which varies according to the situation of the client, by the amount of any Unemployment Insurance benefits which will later become payable to the single adult or adult members of the household by reason of an interruption of work in accordance with the Unemployment Insurance Act, 1971.    Act 8(2)(b), 13(2)(b)

The period which is covered by the preceding paragraph begins on the date on which work ceased and ends on one of the following dates.

i) initial claim for U.I. benefits:

- at the end of the fourth week from the beginning of the U.I. benefit period

ii) subsequent claim for U.I. benefits:

- at the end of the third week following the date of the subsequent claim

iii) no decision by HRDC:

- at the end of the fourth week following the date on which the claim for U.I. benefits was filed

iv) predated claim for U.I. benefits:

- at the end of the second week following the date on which a request to predate an initial claim was accepted

v) interruption of U.I. benefits:

- at the end of the week when payment of U.I. benefits was due

vi) ineligibility for U.I. benefits due to refusal or abandonment of work:

- at the beginning of the U.I. benefit period.    Regulation 54

Ontario - Provincial

Where an applicant for or beneficiary of FBA will be receiving retroactive U.I.C. benefits which will cover the same period for which FBA is being paid, a written agreement to reimburse the Ministry will be required; if such payment is not turned over to the Ministry, the amount will be applied to the months for which it was applicable and an overpayment will be assessed.   (see section 7.8) Regulation 10(1); Policy 0303-03

Ontario - Municipal

Applicants or recipients who are in receipt of a training allowance under the National Training Act or Unemployment Insurance benefits are entitled to a "top-up" under General Assistance where either of these sources of income is less than the appropriate General Assistance rate.    Policy 0303-10

When a client is awaiting retroactive U.I.C. benefits, the arrears are not chargeable income but assets where they cover a period when the person was not receiving social assistance.  Assignments may be taken against income (including U.I.C. benefits) to which the person may be entitled during the time he/she is receiving GWA General Assistance.    Regulation 5(1); Policy 0402-02

Manitoba - Provincial

The net amount of any Unemployment Insurance benefits received by an applicant or recipient is considered unearned and hence totally chargeable. Policy E1-11-01

Manitoba - Municipal

Municipal Assistance applicants in Winnipeg are required to make an application for U.I. benefits if employed at any time in the past 52 weeks.  Assignments must be taken on all prospective U.I. applicants on the prescribed Assignment of Benefits form; after eight weeks, the form is sent to Human Resources Development Canada, which will determine whether any duplication of payments has occurred.  If so, HRDC will establish a repayment schedule (either one payment or spread out over 52 weeks) which allows clients sufficient funds to meet their basic needs and therefore not require continued social assistance involvement.   Policy p.4


Where there is reason to believe that an applicant will shortly acquire resources (including U.I. benefits) greater than necessary for his maintenance and livelihood, the applicant may be required, as a condition of eligibility, to agree in writing to repay any assistance advanced during the waiting period.    Act 22, 23

For the purpose of calculating the financial resources of an applicant or recipient, any benefits to which the person is entitled pursuant to the Unemployment Insurance Act are to be included in that person's financial resources, whether or not those benefits were actually received.  The unit administrator may, however, waive the application of the above provision in whole or in part where he considers it appropriate.  Where the unit administrator waives application of the above provision in a particular case, the recipient may be required to assign to the Minister any benefits to which the recipient is entitled pursuant to the Unemployment Insurance Act.  Unemployment Insurance benefits may not be assigned if those benefits have been included as income in the calculation of entitlement.    Saskatchewan Social Services Memo 18-09-90 ; Regulation 28(1) (1.1, 1.2, 1.3) ; Policy 18-1-3


Clients who apply for temporary assistance pending receipt of U.I. benefits will be classified as "Available for Work/Training - Awaiting UIC Benefits" in the Employment and Training Support category (see section 2.1 for a general description of program categories and section 2.6 for job search requirements for this type of client).  Clients who apply for assistance and will require a supplement to their U.I. benefits on an ongoing basis will be classified under another more appropriate category.    Policy 01-03-03 p. 3

British Columbia

"Unearned income", which includes U.I. benefits, is totally deducted from the income assistance entitlement of a client household.   Regulation 2,10

A person who has grounds to claim federal unemployment insurance benefits and has not applied for those benefits or is awaiting those benefits is not eligible for regular income assistance.  Likewise, no income assistance is to be granted where a penalty period is imposed on a claimant or where he/she is disqualified from U.I. benefits.  The only recourse for such cases is to apply for Hardship Assistance (see section 5.2.10"k").   Regulation 3(7)

In all cases where there is an application for income assistance by an individual who is entitled to U.I. benefits and it is determined that the individual is entitled to Hardship Assistance, the client is to be notified of the following:

- persons who apply for and are eligible for Hardship Assistance pending receipt of U.I. benefits are required to sign an Assignment of U.I. benefits form, which allows the Ministry to recover income assistance advanced for any period of time that U.I. was also payable;

- once a client is receiving U.I., he/she is not eligible for regular income assistance unless the amount of the U.I. benefit is less than the income assistance benefits to which they would otherwise be entitled.   Policy 3.30.5

Where U.I. is in pay, income assistance may be issued to supplement the person's income up to the appropriate income assistance level.  If an individual is not receiving the maximum U.I. benefit to which he/she is entitled for any reason, that person's normal entitlement level, rather than the actual U.I. benefit level, shall be used to determine the amount of income assistance entitlement. In such cases, the client is expected to request in writing from Human Resources Development Canada that the reduction in U.I. entitlement be delayed for the remainder of the period he/she remains in receipt of income assistance.   Policy 3.15.8


When an applicant for social assistance is receiving U.I. benefits, social assistance may be granted to supplement the person's income up to the appropriate levels as stipulated in the regulations (see section 5.2.11).  If an applicant is not, for any reason, receiving the maximum U.I. benefits payable (e.g., overpayment situations), that applicant's normal entitlement level rather than the actual payment level shall be used to determine the client's entitlement to social assistance.  (see also section 2.6) Policy 8/14

Northwest Territories

No specific provisions concerning U.I.

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