Dictionary, Census of Population, 2021
Contributions to Employment Insurance (EI)

Release date: November 17, 2021Updated on: July 13, 2022


All premiums paid by an employee or a self‑employed person in accordance to the federal Employment Insurance (EI) program and the Québec parental insurance plan (QPIP) during the reference period. The amount of premiums paid varies by one's insurable earnings, province of work (Quebec versus outside of Quebec) and type of employment (employed or self‑employed).

For the 2021 Census, the reference period for income data is the calendar year 2020, unless otherwise specified.

Statistical unit(s)


Reported in

2021 and 2016 (100% data)

Reported for

Population 15 years and over in private households

Question number(s)

Variable derived based on administrative tax and benefit records received from the Canada Revenue Agency.


Positive dollar value or nil


This variable represents the net contributions; any excess contributions are excluded.

Employers' contributions to the EI program and QPIP are excluded.

There is no age requirement for deducting EI premiums for an employee through payroll.

The Québec parental insurance plan (QPIP) was introduced in January 2006 to cover maternity, paternity, parental, adoption and compassionate care benefits for workers in Quebec. Most of these benefits were previously provided under the federal Employment Insurance (EI) Program. Participation in QPIP is mandatory for both employed and self‑employed workers in Quebec.

Certain segments of self‑employed workers are eligible to participate in the portion of the federal EI Program that provides special benefits, such as sickness, maternity, parental, adoption and compassionate care benefits. Unlike QPIP, participation in the federal program is voluntary for self‑employed workers.

For additional information about the data collection method, coverage, reference period, concepts, data quality and intercensal comparability of the data, refer to the Income Reference Guide, Census of Population, 2021.

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