Federal Appeal

Employment Insurance

Teachers only required to work 194 days of school year and salary should be attributed to those days

Applicant applied for judicial review of umpire’s decision. Canada employment insurance commission ruled that applicant school teacher received overpayment of employment insurance (EI) maternity benefits. Commission decided that combination of EI benefits and salary top-up paid to applicant by employer under collective agreement, SEB, exceeded normal weekly earnings by $452. Commission ruled that excess constituted earnings and reduced amount of EI benefits to which she was otherwise entitled and resulted in weekly overpayment of $452. Applicant appealed to board of referees. Board allowed appeal. Commission appealed. Umpire held that board erred in law when it allowed applicant’s appeal. Application granted. Applicable standard of review was correctness. Collective agreement that governed applicant’s employment only required teachers to work 194 days of school year and salary should be attributed to those days. Normal weekly earnings should be calculated by dividing applicant’s salary by 194 and multiplying that amount by five days of working week. On that basis, EI maternity benefits and SEB did not exceed normal weekly earnings. No part of SEB constituted earnings for purpose of s. 35 of Employment Insurance Regulations (Can.). There was no overpayment of EI benefits. Umpire committed error in law in allowing commission’s appeal.

Chaulk v. Canada

(Attorney General) (June 22, 2012, F.C.A., Evans, Dawson and Mactavish JJ.A., File No. A-65-11) 218 A.C.W.S. (3d) 100 (20 pp.).

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