2008 Government benefits

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Government premium rates and maximums for 2008:

  • Employment Insurance (EI)
  • Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP) benefits
  • Canada Pension Plan (CPP) / Quebec Pension Plan (QPP)

Increase in Employment Insurance maximum insurable earnings will affect Short-Term Disability plans

Both the federal and Quebec governments have announced rates and maximums for Employment Insurance (EI), Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Quebec Pension Plan (QPP) benefits, and Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP) benefits for 2008.

The most significant change this year is to the EI (Employment Insurance) maximum insurable earnings threshold, which increases by $1,100 from $40,000 to $41,100 for 2008. This increase will affect Short-Term Disability (STD) plans where:

  • the maximum STD benefit is based on the EI maximum weekly benefit ($435 for 2008), or
  • the EI maximum earnings amount is used to calculate the STD benefit.

System changes

We updated our systems so that STD claim payments reflect the increase in EI maximum insurable earnings threshold, and premiums reflect the increase in the STD benefit amount payable. For those plans where no contract amendment is necessary, these updates took effect January 1, 2008.

Though the revised STD benefits payable is effective with the January Notice of Payments due, some customers may not see the revision until their February notice. In those cases the notice will also show any retroactive adjustments for January.

If you do your own premium statement, you will need to ensure that these changes are incorporated into your own system and processes.

Contract adjustments

If your contract wording indicates that the maximum disability benefit is based on the EI maximum weekly benefit or earnings, no contract amendment is required. STD benefits will be automatically-adjusted for claims where the total disability started on or after January 1, 2008.

If your contract indicates a specific maximum benefit amount that is less than the EI weekly maximum of $435, you will need to let us know if you want to adjust your STD benefit payable to reflect the new EI maximum weekly benefit. If you choose to continue with the lesser benefit, please be aware that your plan may no longer continue to qualify for the EI premium reduction program.

The attached chart outlines the applicable EI rate changes for 2008.

If you have any questions, please contact your Sun Life Financial group representative.

Government rates and maximums for 2008

Employment Insurance (all provinces except Quebec)

2008

2007

Maximum insurable earnings

$41,100.00

$40,000.00

Maximum weekly benefit

$435.00

$423.00

Employee premium rate (per $100 of insurable earnings)

$1.73

$1.80

Employer premium rate (per $100 of insurable earnings)

$2.42

$2.52

Maximum annual employee premium

$711.03

$720.00

Maximum annual employer premium

$995.44

$1008.00

 

Premium reduction rate*

(For employers with short-term disability plans)

Not available

1.248%

* Your plan must meet standards established by EI Regulations in order to qualify for the reduced rate.

Employment Insurance and Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (Quebec only)

Employment Insurance

2008

2007

Maximum insurable earnings

$41,100.00

$40,000.00

Maximum weekly benefit

$435.00

$423.00

 

Employee premium rate (per $100 of insurable earnings)*

$1.39

$1.46

Employer premium rate (per $100 of insurable earnings*

$1.95

$2.04

 

QPIP

Maximum annual insurable earnings

$60,500.00

$59,000.00

Employee premium rate (per $100 of insurable earnings)

$0.450

$0.416

Employer premium rate (per $100 of insurable earnings

$0.630

$0.583

* Rates are lower than in the rest of Canada because of the Quebec Parental Insurance Plan (QPIP) that took effect January 1, 2006. With this legislation, Quebec offers its own parental benefits


Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Quebec Pension Plan (QPP)
The following contributions and benefits data are effective January 1, 2008:

CPP

QPP

Yearly Maximum Pensionable Earnings (YMPE)

$44,900.00

$44,900.00

Yearly Basic Exemption (YBE)

$3,500.00

$3,500.00

 
Maximum annual employee / employer contributions

$2,049.30

$2,049.30

Contribution rate (employee / employer)*

4.95%

4.95%

 
Maximum self-employed contributions

$4,098.60

$4,098.60

 

Maximum Monthly Retirement Pension

At age 65

$884.58

 
At age 60

$619.21

 
 
At age 65

 

$884.58

At age 60 (70%)

 

$619.21

At age 70 (130%)

 

$1149.95

 
Death Benefits
Lump sum

$2,500.00

$2,500.00

Maximum monthly surviving spouse’s pension:
  • under age 65
  • age 65 or older

Monthly Orphan’s Pension (each child)

 

$493.28
$530.75
$208.77

 

Maximum monthly surviving spouse’s pension:
  • beneficiary under age 45
    • without dependent children, not disabled
    • with dependent children, not disabled
    • disabled, with or without dependent children
  • between ages 45 and 64
  • age 65 or older

Monthly Orphan’s Pension (each child)

 

 

$437.76
$716.15
$745.77
$745.77
$530.75
$66.29

 

Disability Benefits

Maximum Monthly Contributor’s Pension

$1,077.52

$1,077.49

Monthly Child’s Pension (each child)

$208.77

$66.29

* In 2008 the employee and employer contributions for the CPP and QPP are equal to 4.95% of employment earnings (for a total of 9.9%) up to the YMPE (Yearly Maximum Pensionable Earnings) minus the YBE (Yearly Basic Exemption).