Tuesday, November 07, 2006

E I BENEFITS IF THEIR IS A STRIKE

1. As a seasonal worker, who gets laid off regularly for the winter months and collects El during the layoff, am I eligible for El benefits if my regularly scheduled layoff occurs before to a strike or lockout? What happens when I perform strike duties and get strike pay during my lay off?

Yes, you may be eligible. Since your winter layoff is considered to be more than a short term layoff (i.e., more than one month) you are expected to be looking for work. You would be required to report your strike pay on your weekly El reporting cards. However, strike pay is not considered to be earnings for El purposes so it wiil not be deducted from your El benefits. However, remember that regular El is designed for people who have no jobs and are actively looking for work so reporting strike pay may cause El to check on your availability for work. If you spend too much time on strike duty, El may assume that you are not available for work and may cut you off.

2. As a seasonal worker, who gets laid off regularly for the winter months and collects El during the layoff, am I eligible for El benefits if my regularly scheduled lay off occurs after a strike or lockout begins? In other words, could I start my El benefits after the end of my contract?

No. Even though you normally would not being working in the winter and would not return to work until the next season, you would not be eligible for El benefits during a strike or lockout because the strike or lockout was the event that disentitled you to El benefits before you reached your normal layoff date. However, if your winter layoff has not ended when the strike or lockout is over, then you may be eligible to receive El benefits for the remainder of the time up to your return to work in the next season.

3. As a seasonal worker I was receiving regular El benefits prior to the strike/lockout. If I participate in a strike or lockout can I still receive my regular El benefits? What happens when I perform strike duties and get strike pay during my lay off?

Yes. You would be required to report your strike pay on your weekly El reporting cards. Strike pay is not considered to be earnings for El purposes so it will not be deducted from your El benefits. However, remember that regular El is designed for people who have no jobs and are actively looking for work so reporting strike pay may cause El to check on your availability for work. If you spend too much time on strike duty, El may assume that you are not available for work and may cut you off.

4. As a seasonal worker, what happens if I am scheduled to return to work during a strike?

Your regular El benefits end at the scheduled return date.

5. As a seasonal worker now collecting El benefits and without a scheduled return date will I continue to be eligible for El benefits during a strike or lockout?

Usually, yes. However, if the employer can convince El that there is a pattern of employment that shows that without the strike or lockout you would have been back to work, then El will cut you off.


8. As a seasonal worker, I received a phone call to return to work and signed a contract but I have only been scheduled for 2 days of work so far and I am not scheduled to work in the future. Am I eligible for El benefits during a strike or lockout?

It depends on the reason why you were not scheduled for more work. If it is because of a strike or lockout that you are not at work, then you would not be eligible for El benefits. On the other hand, if you had been recalled on an "on call" basis, then it would be harder for El to determine that you should be disqualified. Since this is not a dear cut situation, it would be best to apply for El and have them make the determination on your eligibility.

7. As a seasonal worker, I have been called back to work but I am only working 2 days per week. As a result, I am continuing to receive El benefits although my employment earnings are deducted from my El benefits. Am I eligible for El benefits during a strike or lockout?

If you are still working 40% of the week and receiving El benefits when a strike or lockout begins, then you would not receive El benefits for the 40% of the week that you are on strike or lockout but you could still maintain eligibility for the remaining 60%.

Don't forget that you would be required to report your strike pay on your weekly El reporting cards. Strike pay is not considered to be earnings for El purposes so it will not be deducted from your El benefits. However, remember that regular El is designed for people who have no jobs (or are less than fully employed) and are actively looking for work so reporting strike pay may cause El to check on your availability for work. If you spend too much time on strike duty, El may assume that you are not available for work and may cut you off.

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