Maternity Leave Benefits - Canada - Vacation pay questions
September 2, 2014 8:39 AM Subscribe
This question is about maternity leave benefits (employment insurance) in Canada. Please know I have read everything online that I can and called Service Canada several times, but their recording says that there is such a high volume of calls they can't even put me on hold to talk to a human, it only gives me the option to listen to the recording or hang up.
My question is regarding unpaid vacation time that is owed to me but I might not have time to take all of before starting maternity leave.
Ok so my due date is Nov 7. I have 3 weeks paid vacation that are owed to me, which has accumulated during this year and last. My job is paid in salary, and when I start getting EI benefits for maternity leave, I will be at the maximum that they pay out. I know how much I will be getting per week, and how long. What I am confused about is, if I take a payout for one of those weeks of vacation before starting mat leave, will this come directly out of my EI benefits? Or should I just take the whole 3 weeks vacation and be done with it, since it will not help me anyway? (My work is short staffed and I have a number of projects to finish up in the next several weeks.) If I get paid out for a week's unused vacation on my last cheque, it seems likely that this will be directly deducted from the benefits, but it isn't clear. Does it help if I was paid for it on the previous paycheque?
Also, I wonder what would happen if I was on my scheduled paid vacation (planned to take right before starting mat leave benefits) and the baby came before the due date. I guess I lose the vacation then? But I would have already been paid by work for it, so I assume mat leave benefits would start after that. ( I would not get the full year of EI benefits in this case.) Correct me if this is not how it works.
Can someone who has been in this situation answer how it worked with vacation pay? It is really hard to get answers to my questions from the government! I have read a lot of conflicting information online and just want a straight answer so I can plan what day to start mat leave.