HR Home Forums Answer for recall during temp lay off

Conner Lantz
Post count: 4836

Here you go. I apologize for keeping you waiting but I’m on the East coast and Alan is in BC and this came in just before midnight while I was sleeping. Good luck with your situation.
In BC a “temporary layoff” is defined as 13 weeks in any 20 where employees earn less than 50% of the regular wages. So, essentially, an employer could lay off staff, bring them back one or two weeks later, have them work for a several weeks, lay them off again, all within the scope of a temporary layoff.
Your reader asks two questions:

  1. What documentation is needed when employees are recalled to work? That really depends on the context. If employees are paid by timesheet and sign these, that’s probably sufficient record of the return to work. If employees are paid by salary, there should probably be something, even if its an email from the employee or the person’s supervisor acknowledging the return to work. Remember, in BC employers are required to record an employee’s actual hours of work, irrespective of the method of pay.
  2. The impact on EI of work during a layoff. This will impact their ability to claim EI benefits. There are two considerations. If an employee works just a small number of hours per week, benefits may still be payable, but will be reduced. If benefits are payable, no matter how little, this will still count as one of the benefit weeks a person is entitled to. It’s really more beneficial for employees to work more or less full time, so they can suspend their EI claim. Since the weeks a person may be entitled to (based on the hours reported on the ROE) may be taken within a 52 week period, there isn’t too much impact if a person suspends their claim for a week or two and then returns to that claim. In this situation, if there are still weeks remaining to be paid, it won’t be necessary to start a new claim.

Also, a person can’t both be on EI and claim the new emergency benefit – CERB – provided on a short term basis by the federal government.
Also, if a person does work while there is an existing EI claim, the employer should emphasize the importance of properly reporting the hours worked. Otherwise, this will jeopardize any future EI claims and lead to significant penalties imposed by Service Canada.