Question on Record of Employment from US company when

Sent: Wednesday, December 07, 2005 8:45 AM
To: taxman at
Subject: Question on Record of Employment from US company
I have worked in BC, for a company based in the USA for the past
5 years.  They have their payroll set up through a company for
their Canadian Employees and I have been receiving my T4 each
Feb. as required.  My problem has been that I have been laid off
due to restructure, and they have not sent me my Record of
Employment (4 weeks later) and they don’t seem to know what it is
and they think it doesn’t apply to them.  Do you have any
suggestions?  I believe they must provide me with it, and I am
not sure how to get it.
R xxxxxxxxxx
david ingram replies:
Amazing.  I find it almost impossible to believe that a Canadian
Payroll Company who has paid you for 5 years and issued T4 slips
would not automatically issue a Record of Employment when you
were laid off.
I wonder if you received a T4A in February of the last 4 years
and were actually working as a self-employed contractor.
If there was EI and CPP deducted from your cheques, you were an
employee, should have received a Record of Employment and are
entitled to Employment Insurance.
If no EI and CPP were deducted, you were being paid as a
self-employed contractor and are not entitled to EI.
If there was EI deducted, put your application for EI in
immediately "without" the Record of Employment.  Tell the EI
people that you tried to get it and the company did not know what
it was.  The EI people will do an audit and make sure the
paperwork is correct.
On the other hand, if you did not have EI deducted, you have no
rights to EI and should have known it.
On another note, you may be in the position where you can claim
to be an employee even though you worked as a contractor.
Sometimes, the CRA will move in and determine someone who was a
contractor to be an employee retroactively.  I personally find
this abhorrent because invariably the "contractor" wanted to be a
contractor so that he or she would get better tax breaks and then
cries foul when something goes wrong (like a lay-off).  Be aware
that if you have been claiming expenses as a self-employed
person, trying to become an employee can backfire on you
retroactively with your tax returns.  Better to use your energies
to find another job.
David Ingram's US/Canada Services
US / Canada / Mexico tax, Immigration and working Visa
US / Canada Real Estate Specialists
Home office at:
4466 Prospect Road
North Vancouver,  BC, CANADA, V7N 3L7
Cell (604) 657-8451 -
(604) 980-0321 Fax (604) 980-0325
Calls welcomed from 10 AM to 10 PM 7 days a week (please do not
fax or phone outside of those hours as this is a home office)
email to taxman at
Disclaimer:  This question has been answered without detailed
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