Compassionate care benefits (CCB) are Employment Insurance (EI) benefits paid to people who have to be away from work temporarily to provide care or support to a family member who is gravely ill and who has a significant risk of death within 26 weeks (six months). A maximum of 26 weeks of compassionate care benefits may be paid to eligible people.
- The goal of the CCB is to enable employees to take a temporary secured leave from work to provide care or support to a gravely ill family member at risk of dying.
- The CCB program adopts a broad view of those considered to be a ‘family member.’ Program recipients can care for a gravely ill: (1) family member; (2) spouse or common-law partner’s family members; or (3) person who is considered ‘like’ a family member (for instance a close friend or neighbour).
- The CCB program views support to a family member to be: (1) providing psychological or emotional support; (2) arranging for care by a third party; and/or (3) directly providing or participating in the care.
- The CCB can be used to care for or support a family member who is gravely ill and at risk of dying regardless of where that care recipient lives. Program recipients and dying individuals can be separated by provinces or even countries.
- To receive the CCB, an EI application must be made to the program online or in person at a Service Canada Centre.
In 2013, the CHPCA surveyed Canada’s top 100 employers to see what benefits they offered their employees. A copy of the report is available here.