Compassionate Care Leave

Compassionate Care leave provides up to 8 weeks of job-protected 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.  If additional leave beyond 8 weeks is requested, it will be treated as General Leave.

Up to 26 weeks (increased from 6 to 26 weeks on Jan. 3, 2016) of Compassionate Care benefits from Employment & Social Development Canada (ESDC) may be payable provided you meet Employment Insurance (EI) eligibility rules and serve a two-week waiting period.  These benefits are administered by Service Canada.

*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

 

You may also receive EI benefits to care for a gravely ill person if that person considers you a family member, such as a close friend or neighbour. A signed form called the Compassionate Care Benefits Attestation, is required from the gravely ill person or their legal representative.

 

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