Employment (Covid-19)

From Clicklaw Wikibooks
This information applies to British Columbia, Canada. This page was last updated by Clicklaw team on May 25, 2020 - 12:00 PM PDT.


This page provides links to online resources dealing with the ways Covid-19 public health directives are affecting the lives of British Columbians.

This list is a starting point and is not meant to be exhaustive. It is not intended to give legal advice on your particular legal problem.

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Find information on filing of court documents and applications during the recovery of some court operations here: BC Courts: Court Filings & Procedures






Common legal questions

People's Law School: Coronavirus: Your Legal Questions Answered

  • Q&A on your legal rights, written by lawyers in plain language. Includes getting paid, temporary layoff, taking time off work, options when being self-employed, employees rights.

Justice Education Society: Legal Help BC - Work

  • This Q & A style resource includes answers to work related questions about EI benefits, business support, workplace safety and CERB benefits

Return to Work

WorkSafe BC: COVID-19 and Returning to Safe Operation

  • Guidance for employers to resume workplace operations after COVID-19 work stoppages.

Osler, Hoskin & Harcout LLP: The Employer's COVID-19 Return to Work Playbook

  • Guidelines and key considerations for employers re-opening the workplace after COVID-19 shut downs.

Canadian HR Reporter: COVID-19 Key Questions on the Return to Work

  • Answers to some general HR questions about the return to work.

Province of BC: Go Forward Strategy Checklist

  • Key steps for employers to safely operate a business and reduce the risk of Covid transmission

Government benefits

People's Law School: Coronavirus & Benefits for Workers: Which Benefits Are for You?

  • Helps to figure out which benefits you can get and how to apply. It includes common questions and answers, and phone numbers to call for help.

People's Law School: Coronavirus & Benefits for Workers: The 3 Minute Summary

  • Explains what types of benefits are available, who they are for, the amount, how long the benefit will last and when it's availalbe.

CBC News: Financial Guide for Canadians Affected by Covid-19

  • A central hub of government benefits available across the country to anyone affected by covid-19. Links to appropriate goverment pages for more information

Community Legal Assistance Society BC: Employment Insurance and the New Canada Emergency Response Benefit

  • Information about the new Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) for workers impacted by COVID-19. Also includes changes to Employment Insurance (EI).

Government of Canada: Apply for Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) with CRA

  • Information about who can apply, instructions on how to apply, and what to expect after you submit your application.

Service Canada: Covid-19 Notice

  • Information on Employment Insurance (EI), labour program and federally regulated workplaces, work-sharing program, Canada student loans, and passport services.
  • If you have already completed the application for EI sickness benefits whether you are sick or quarantined and would like to have the one-week waiting period waived, call the new toll-free phone number below. It is important to note that no other request will be actioned on this phone line. We will take action only for sick or quarantined clients affected by the COVID-19 for which the application for sickness benefits has been filed.:
    • Telephone: 1-833-381-2725 (toll-free)
    • Teletypewriter (TTY): 1-800-529-3742


BCGEU: Employment Insurance Fact Sheet

  • A helpful how-to guide on applying for EI during the Covid-19 Pandemic.

Adrienne Smith Law: Explainer - Government COVID-19 Benefits

  • Explains benefits available to workers & employees during the COVID-19 novel coronavirus emergency, depending on their health status, and whether they're a worker

TRU Faculty of Law: CERB Help App

  • Interactive assistance with eligibility for the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB). Covers a wide variety of work circumstances and generates a report with next steps

Workers rights and safety

WorkSafeBC: Covid-19 info & resources

  • Info & resources for some key workplace issues related to COVID-19, including rights to refuse work, workplace protections, and compensation.

BC's Office of the Human Rights Commissioner: Frequently Asked Questions

  • Answers 1 to 11 address questions about the rights and responsibilities of employers and employees.

Employers and unions

CLAS BC's Human Rights Clinic: Top Ten Human Rights Tips for Employers during COVID-19

CanLII: Coping with COVID-19: Employer FAQs, 2020 CanLIIDocs 482

  • Answers to frequently asked questions for employers seeking an understanding of their legal obligations to their employees.

Small Business BC: What Employers Need to Know About Temporary Layoffs

Moore Edgar Lyster LLP: Information for Unions Responding to COVID-19 in the Workplace

Government of Canada: Work-Sharing Program

  • Details about the federal work-share program to avoid employee layoffs.


Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada Licence Covid-19 Resources for British Columbians © Clicklaw and Courthouse Libraries BC is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.5 Canada Licence.
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