Canada Employment Insurance Commission announces 2017 Employment Insurance Premium Rate and Maximum Insurable Earnings

    September 14, 2016

    The Canada Employment Insurance Commission (CEIC) today announced that the EI premium rate for 2017 will be $1.63 per $100 of insurable earnings, which is the seven-year break even rate forecast by the Chief Actuary in the 2017 Actuarial Report on the Employment Insurance Premium Rate. The release of the new EI premium rate for 2017 marks the beginning of the CEIC assuming responsibility for setting the annual EI premium rate.

    In the future, the Commission will set the premium rate each year based on the seven-year break-even rate, which is a rate forecast to cover the projected costs of the EI program over a seven year period, including any cumulative surplus or deficit in the EI Operating Account.

    The CEIC also announced today that for residents of Quebec covered under the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP), premiums will be reduced by $0.36 per $100 of insurable earnings. As such, they will pay $1.27 per $100 of insurable earnings.

    The Maximum Insurable Earnings (MIE) for 2017 will increase to $51,300 from $50,800 in 2016. The MIE is indexed on an annual basis and represents the ceiling up to which EI premiums are collected and the maximum amount considered in applications for EI benefits.

    The Commission also announced the premium reductions for employers registered under the Premium Reduction Program (PRP). For 2017, it is estimated that the reductions will provide registered employers and their employees with $955 million in premium relief. Registered employers will be notified individually, as individual reductions may vary. Employers not qualifying for a premium reduction pay 1.4 times the announced EI rate for 2017, that is $2.28 per $100 of insurable earnings.

    Furthermore, for self-employed Canadians who have opted-in to the EI program, the annual earnings required to qualify for special benefits will increase to $6,888 on January 1, 2017, up from $6,820 for 2016. The level of earnings required by self-employed Canadians to be eligible for EI special benefits is indexed annually to growth in the MIE.

    In addition to these changes, the CEIC has made public today the EI premium rate setting reports. To ensure continued transparency and accountability in the rate setting process, the CEIC is responsible for preparing a summary of key elements of the premium rate setting, including the MIE. The Chief Actuary's report and the CEIC's summary of that report are available at

    The CEIC is a tripartite organization, representing the interests of workers, employers, and government. The Commissioner for Workers and the Commissioner for Employers are appointed by the Governor in Council for terms of up to five years. They are mandated to represent and reflect the views of their respective constituencies.

    To learn more information about the CEIC, please visit

    Employment and Social Development Canada