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Generally, yes. Under the Employment Insurance Act, all “insured” workers may access EI benefits given that they have paid their EI premiums and have satisfied the minimum requirements, including completion of 600 hours of insurable employment.  The number of insurable hours required can vary depending upon relevant factors such as regional unemployment rates and program-specific exemptions, such as those relating to COVID-19.

However, a foreign worker may be exempt from EI coverage when they remain covered by an EI program in their originating country while working temporarily in Canada.

If you have any questions regarding legal entitlements, particularly if you have been fired, laid off, or will be commencing a leave of absence, please contact Toronto employment and immigration lawyers, Sultan Lawyers, at (416) 214-5111 or via email at mlahert@sultanlawyers.com.