Compassionate Care Leave

Compassionate Care leave provides up to eight weeks of unpaid leave for an employee to care or support a family member if a medical practitioner issues a certificate stating that the family member has a serious medical condition with a significant risk of death within 26 weeks.

In order to apply for Compassionate Care leave from UBC and/or benefits from Service Canada, you will need to provide a medical certificate from a doctor or medical practitioner stating that your family member has a serious medical condition with a significant risk of death within 26 weeks.  To request leave, UBC requires a copy of the medical certificate and the original should accompany your application for EI benefits.

The personal information provided in the medical certificate to UBC is collected pursuant to section 26(c) of the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act, RSBC 1996, c. 165. The information will be used for the purposes of leave administration.

The personal information collected in the medical certificate provided to EI is administered in accordance with the EI Act and Privacy Act.

You are eligible for eight weeks of unpaid compassionate care leave. You do not need to take the leave in one eight-week block; you may elect to take the leave in units of one or more weeks, up to a total maximum of eight weeks. This is also the case if you have applied for and are receiving EI compassionate care benefits.

You may start the leave the date the certificate is issued, or the date the leave began if it was before the date the certificate was issued for the purposes of supporting the leave request.

The leave ends on the last day of the week on the earlier of when the family member dies; or the expiration of the 26-week period; or eight weeks (or other prescribed period if taken in units of one or more weeks) from when the leave began.

If your family member does not pass away with the original 26-week period, You are allowed to take further unpaid leave after obtaining a new medical certificate. However, the maximum number of EI Compassionate Care benefits that is payable is six weeks.

On the week of June 11, 2006, the definition of “family” was expanded for EI benefits.  The BC Employment Standards Act has amended the definition of “family” for eligibility for unpaid leave effective October 2006 to match the definition for EI purposes.

You can receive compassionate care benefits to care for your: OR to care for the following family members of your spouse or common-law partner
Brothers or sisters and stepbrothers and stepsisters Brothers or sisters and stepbrothers and stepsisters
Grandparents and step grandparents Grandparents
Grandchildren and their spouse or common-law partners Grandchildren
Son-in-law and daughter-in-law, either married or common-law Son-in-law and daughter-in-law, either married or common-law
Father-in-law and mother-in-law, either married or common-law  
Brother-in-law and sister-in-law, either married or common-law  
Uncle and aunt and their spouse or common-law partner  
Nephew and niece and their spouse or common-law partner Nephew and niece
Current or former foster parents Current or former foster parents
Current or former foster children and their spouse or common-law partners  
Current or former wards Current or former wards
Current or former guardians or tutors and their spouse or common-law partner  

If you wish to take additional leave after the expiry of your Compassionate Care leave, please refer to Leaves – General Leaves section for your employment group.

EI Compassionate Care benefits are administered by Service Canada. Visit their website or call 1-800-206-7218 for more information.

Comments are closed.

a place of mind, The University of British Columbia

UBC Human Resources - Benefits
600 - 6190 Agronomy Road
Vancouver, BC, Canada
V6T 1Z3
Tel 604-822-8111
Fax 604-822-8134
Email:

Emergency Procedures | Accessibility | Contact UBC | ©2009 University of British Columbia