Social Security Tribunal of Canada

Employment Insurance Appeal Division: What happens after you start your appeal

After you appeal, here’s what happens:

1 – We send you a letter

If you sent us all the information we need, we’ll send you a letter to confirm we received your appeal. If you don’t receive a letter from us, contact us.

We’ll also send a copy of this letter to the Canada Employment Insurance Commission (CEIC) and other parties in the appeal if there are any. The CEIC is a party in the appeal. Service Canada made the reconsideration decision on behalf of the CEIC.

If there’s information missing that we need, we’ll send you a letter telling you what’s missing and giving you a deadline to send it to us.

2 – We make sure you and the CEIC have all the documents

We’ll make sure you and the CEIC have the same information at every step. This means we’ll send you a copy of the documents the CEIC sends us, and we’ll send the CEIC a copy of the documents you send us.

If another person is involved in your appeal as an added party, we’ll send them the same information too. The decision may affect other people. For example, if your employer has a direct interest in what happens with your appeal, they may be an “added party.”

At the General Division, we numbered your documents “GD1”, “GD2,” and so on. At the Appeal Division, we’ll number the documents “AD1,” “AD2,” and so on. We’ll add the document number and the page number to the bottom of each page. For example, this is page 1 of the first document in an appeal file:

AD-1  SST/TSS REC: FE 17 2021

To refer to a specific document when you contact us or during your hearing, you can mention the GD or AD number at the bottom of the page. This way, everyone knows where the information is.

3 – We assign your appeal to a member

We’ll assign your appeal to an Appeal Division member

The Appeal Division is separate from the General Division. So you won’t have the same member you had at the General Division. 

4 – The member may suggest alternative dispute resolution (ADR)

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) is a simple way of possibly resolving your appeal.

In ADR, an Appeal Division member leads a conversation between the parties to see whether your appeal can be resolved. A member will suggest ADR if they see a good chance of settling the issues. They may suggest this right at the start of your appeal or at a later stage.

If the member suggests ADR, we’ll invite you to an informal meeting. We’ll also invite the CEIC and other parties (if there are any) to the meeting.

We usually have the meeting by teleconference.

At the meeting, you’ll have a chance to:

  • ask questions about the issues that are most important to you
  • talk with the CEIC to try and resolve some of your differences

1 of 3 things happens:

  • You might reach an agreement with the CEIC on all the issues. If this happens, the member will send you a decision based on the agreement, and you won’t have a hearing.
  • You might decide to withdraw (cancel) your appeal.
  • If you don’t reach an agreement, your appeal will continue through the regular appeal process.

You want to go through ADR, but you haven’t been invited

You can write us to ask for ADR if you think there’s a good chance you and the CEIC can reach an agreement about your appeal.

5 – The member decides whether to give you permission to appeal

The member will look at the documents in the file to see why you’re appealing (your grounds for appealing). They’ll consider whether your appeal has a “reasonable chance of success.” That means the member will consider whether you have an argument that could possibly succeed. If they think you do, they’ll want to hear more about it at the next step.

If the member thinks you have an argument that could possibly succeed, they’ll give you permission to appeal. This permission is called “leave to appeal.”

If you don’t get permission to appeal

If the member doesn’t give you permission to appeal, your appeal won’t continue and we’ll close your appeal file.

We’ll send you the member’s decision. It’ll explain the reasons why they didn’t give you permission to appeal. If you have a representative, they’ll get it too.

If you get permission to appeal

If the member gives you permission to appeal, we’ll send you a letter with their decision and the next steps.

If you have a representative, they’ll get the letter too.

If you want to know the member’s reasons for giving you permission to appeal, you can ask for them. You have to ask within 10 days of getting the decision.

6 – You send us your arguments

If the member gives you permission to appeal, you have 45 days to send us your arguments. 

Arguments express your point of view about why the Appeal Division should allow your appeal. Your arguments should explain the mistakes you think the General Division made. They should say how you think the Appeal Division could fix those mistakes and what specific result you’re looking for.

If the Appeal Division agrees the General Division made a mistake, the Appeal Division will do 1 of 2 things:

  • make the decision the General Division should have made (the result could be the same as or different from the General Division decision result)
  • send the file back to the General Division to reconsider its decision

Don’t include new evidence with your arguments. Instead, refer to the evidence that the General Division had. The Appeal Division can’t consider new evidence about your claim for benefits. 

Send us your arguments in writing. They can be in any written format (for example, in an email or letter). We encourage you to send them by email, if you can. Make sure you send us electronic documents in a format we can open.

We share your arguments with all the parties involved in your appeal.

7 – You have a hearing

Usually, the Appeal Division schedules your hearing right after you get permission to appeal.

We ask what type of hearing you prefer in your application to the Appeal Division.

If you have an oral hearing

We’ll send you a written Notice of Hearing. If you have a representative, they’ll get it too.

A Notice of Hearing gives you details about your hearing. For example, it says when and where the hearing is and the type of hearing (teleconference, videoconference or in person). 

The member will make a decision after your hearing.

If your hearing is in writing

You might have your hearing in writing. We’ll tell you if this is going to happen.

Learn more about the different types of hearing and how to prepare for yours.

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