Keeping your appeal moving: COVID-19 measures
To keep everyone safe, we have made some changes to the way we deliver our services and help Canadians access their benefits. Our tribunal members could already work from home before physical distancing rules came into effect, so much of our operations were already based around that system. As a result, we’ve been able to keep many hearings going and to continue to issue decisions.
On this page
To maintain physical distancing, we’re not holding in-person hearings right now. Videoconference hearings that were scheduled to take place at Service Canada Centres aren’t taking place either.
If you selected an in-person or videoconference hearing as your preference, we’ll reach out to you to find a solution, which will likely involve:
- Offering to hold your hearing over the phone using the teleconference function in Zoom;
- Offering to hold your hearing over video from your own device (your phone, tablet, or computer) using the videoconference function in Zoom;
- Postponing your hearing until more options are available.
We’re still holding teleconference hearings as scheduled.
We’re currently using Zoom to conduct both telephone and video hearings. We’re aware of security concerns reported about Zoom, but we’re confident that our approach keeps your safety in mind. For instance, to protect your privacy, every Zoom hearing has its own password. You’ll get the password for your hearing in your Notice of Hearing.
For your teleconference hearing
The teleconference system is very busy right now. For your teleconference hearing:
- Try to connect 10 minutes before the hearing.
- Keep trying to connect until you get through.
- The member (moderator) will stay on the line for 30 minutes after the scheduled start time until you connect.
- If you connect and the member (moderator) hasn’t connected yet, stay on the line for 30 minutes after the scheduled start time.
- If no one can connect, we will contact you to discuss options, including rescheduling your hearing.
If you call us, you may not get an agent right away. Please leave a message. We will get back to you as soon as possible.
We are now processing mail, but only periodically. Sending us documents by regular mail may cause delays. The fastest way to send us information is always by email.
We encourage you to contact us by email. You can still contact us by fax, if you choose, at 1-855-814-4117 (toll-free in Canada and the United States) or 1-613-941-5121 (long distance charges may apply).
We will be flexible and help you deal with this situation.
There may be delays in processing appeals, but we are doing what we can to minimize these delays.
To help us minimize any possible delays, we recommend you contact us by email.
For the most up-to-date information on COVID-19, visit Canada.ca/coronavirus and follow Canada's Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, on Twitter. You can also contact the new coronavirus information line at 1-833-784-4397.
One-time payments to persons with disabilities / Canada Emergency Response Benefits / Employment Insurance benefits
The Social Security Tribunal does not process:
- One-time payments to persons with disabilities – Visit the Government of Canada’s dedicated webpage for details and contact information.
- Canada Emergency Response Benefits (CERB) – CERB is being phased out and replaced, but the Canada Revenue Agency is continuing to accept and process retroactive applications until December 2, 2020. For more information, visit the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) website.
- If you continue to need income support, find out if you are eligible for Employment Insurance or other Recovery benefits by visiting the After CERB: Transitioning to new benefits website.
- Employment Insurance initial applications – You can apply for these benefits through MyAccount on the Service Canada website.
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