Rossland NewsProvince of British Columbia Launches New COVID-19 Resource Website

March 19, 2020

Province of British Columbia Launches New COVID-19 Resource Website

The website contains information and links on the following topics:

Non-Health Information & Services
Provincial COVID-19 News
COVID-19 Prevention
Employee and employer information

Innovation Canada Website Provides Assistance for Business

The government of Canada has a website providing assistance for business affected by COVID-19.


Canadian Payroll Association Bulletin

The Canadian Payroll Association has authored a bulletin to help assist businesses with Employment Insurance records.

While the coding on EI Records of Employment may not seem critical, it is vital that the forms are filled correctly to avoid unnecessary errors, difficulty and delays in EI processing, especially at this difficult time.

View the bulletin here.


Top 3 FAQ’s on EI for your Employees, and Recommendations from go2HR

This global pandemic has left many employers and properties within the industry with unfortunate circumstances and many are facing laying off employees, reducing operating hours or closing their businesses. What are your options and how can you best set up your employees during this challenging time?

Go2HR outlines key information for employers considering layoffs in this helpful article. They have also highlighted some of the top questions in relation to EI and how you should proceed. 

If I need to lay off employees immediately to help save my business, how soon can they be considered for Employment Insurance (EI) benefits?

Laid-off or terminated employees can apply for Employment Insurance (EI) benefits, which typically kick in after a waiting period. The federal government announced on March 18, 2020, that it would be relaxing the requirements to qualify for EI given the crisis and that it was working to provide emergency support benefits to people losing their job (likely for a 14 week period). More details of this are expected in the coming days.

Some requirements have already been waived for new EI claimants who are quarantined, can’t work and don’t have sick leave benefits including the waiting period.

I have some employees that don’t want their vacation pay to be paid out before going on EI – does this need to be paid out right away or can they take it at a later stage?

If the layoff is considered temporary within the definition of the ESA then paying vacation pay is not a requirement, and consistent with other circumstances, say parental leave, where vacation pay is not necessarily paid out. If the layoff is not temporary as defined by the ESA, then vacation pay would need to be paid out.

Are layoffs as a result of COVID-19 being treated as “group terminations” and hence do employers need a code from the Minister of Labour

If the employer is laying off 50 or more employees from a single location within a 2-month period, the group termination provisions of the BC ESA still stand; here is a summary of those provisions.


go2HR COVID-19 Resources

go2HR has put together a collection of useful information related to COVID-19, to help employers through this challenging time. Check back regularly, as new resources continue to be added.