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When is a Canadian eligible for EI and likely to get it? To my understanding it depends on:

  • how much money they are making
  • if they have paid into EI from previous work
  • how their last job ended

The last point is the one that confuses me. For example: if someone just quits their job, I don't think they can collect EI. I think the government goes off of the reason specified in the Record of Employment (RoE). Is there an exhaustive list of reasons? For example: if I quit or my boss terminates me within my probation period, would I be eligible for EI?

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There is a page summarizing the eligibility of people for EI.

You may be entitled to EI regular benefits if you:

  • Were employed in insurable employment

  • lost your job through no fault of your own

  • have been without work and without pay for at least seven consecutive days in the last 52 weeks

  • have worked for the required number of insurable employment hours in the last 52 weeks or since the start of your last EI claim, whichever is shorter 

  • are ready, willing and capable of working each day

  • are actively looking for work

You may not be eligible if you left your work voluntarily.

It is normal that you can't claim if you quit, but if you were let go you can (with exceptions). Being on probation doesn't make any difference. You can be denied EI if you were fired for something that was your fault, such as gross misconduct, but you are not usually denied if you were fired for not being good enough at your job.

There is some discretion in whether you are given EI or not, so nobody can be 100% that you will get it or not in unusual cases.

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  • If you a terminated within probation period, then would you be eligible for EI? – titchseason Apr 14 at 7:16
  • Also is there a difference between getting laid off and getting terminated without cause? – titchseason Apr 14 at 7:16
  • I've added some more details in the answer. Please edit these extra questions into the original. – DJClayworth Apr 14 at 13:00

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