In addition to some corporate tax changes and utility payment deferrals meant to help employers, Alberta has amended its Employment Standards Code to provide employees with a job protected leave related to COVID-19. In particular, full-time and part-time employees will be entitled to 14 days of job protected leave if they are:

Required to self-isolate
Caring for a child or dependent adult that is required to self-isolate
The leave is available to all employees, regardless of service time and there is no requirement to provide a medical note.

The leave is meant to cover the 14-day self-isolation period recommended by Alberta’s chief medical officer and it may be extended if the advice of the chief medical officer changes.

The leave is unpaid, but employees may be eligible for up to 15 weeks of Employment Insurance Benefits due to medical reasons such as self-isolation and self-quarantine. Also in light of the Emergency Care Benefit announced yesterday by Prime Minister, Trudeau, employees that do not qualify for EI sickness benefits are entitled to bi-weekly payments up to $900 for being quarantined, sick with COVID-19, or taking care of family members who are sick with COVID-19. The application for this benefit is through the Canada Revenue Agency.

Please stay tuned for further developments as we expect many provinces to enact similar legislation. Please do not hesitate to contact ClientCare with any COVID-19 related questions or concerns. We are here to help through this challenging time.