No. 6–Wage Earner Protection Program Appeals (Overpayment)

Rules of Procedure

This document describes the procedures that must be followed by an applicant (employee) who wishes to file an application of appeal a review decision regarding overpayment made by the Minister of Labour (the Minister) under section 32.2 of the Wage Earner Protection Program Act (the WEPP Act) to the Canada Industrial Relations Board (the CIRB or the Board).

To ensure the timely processing of the application, it is important that these rules be reviewed carefully.

Should you have any questions concerning the Board’s procedure, you can contact a Board officer at 1-800-575-9696.


Section 32.5(1) of the WEPP Act provides that an individual may appeal a review decision made by the Minister under section 32.2 of the WEPP Act (review decision regarding overpayment) to the CIRB only on a question of law or jurisdiction. Pursuant to section 32.8 of the WEPP Act, the Board may confirm, vary or rescind the review decision regarding overpayment.

For further information about overpayment appeals under the WEPP Act, please consult the Board’s Information Circular No.17–Wage Earner Protection Program Act Appeals (Overpayment).

For copies of the WEPP Act and the Canada Industrial Relations Board Regulations, 2012 (the Regulations), rules of procedure, forms or information circulars, please visit the Board’s website.

Public Process

The information provided and any documents submitted to the Board are collected solely for the purpose of administering the WEPP Act and will be used to deal with and adjudicate matters that come before the Board. Parties that engage the Board’s services should be aware that this is a public process. Documents filed with the Board will be placed on the public record, with the exception of documents that the Board declares to be confidential. The Board provides public access to case files and posts key decisions on its website. Board decisions may identify parties and witnesses by name and may include information about them that is relevant and necessary to the determination of the dispute. For sensitive information, a request can be made to the Board for a Confidentiality Order. See Information Circular No. 12 for the Board’s Policy on Openness and Privacy.

Filing a WEPP Appeal Regarding Overpayment with the CIRB

The Board has determined that an application to appeal pursuant to section 32.5(1) of the WEPP Act shall, unless circumstances beyond the control of the applicant justify a longer period, be made within 60 days after the day on which the applicant is notified of the Minister’s decision.

If an applicant is unable to file their application to appeal within the 60-day period, they must provide the reasons for the delay. An extension may be granted if the applicant can demonstrate that there were circumstances beyond their control that prevented them from filing within the prescribed time period.

An application to appeal must be in writing and include detailed grounds/reasons for the appeal. The applications to appeal may be denied if reasons are not provided. The appeal will be based on the departmental record that was created for the review and no new evidence is admissible. Only submissions on law or jurisdiction are admissible.

An applicant should submit the following information and documents with the Board when filing the application to appeal:

  1. a completed Wage Earner Protection Program Overpayment Appeal Form; and
  2. a copy of the review decision made by the Minister under section 32.2 of the WEPP Act (review decision regarding overpayment).

If any of this information or documentation is not available, a written explanation must be provided by the applicant when filing the application to appeal. It is strongly recommended that the applicant use the Wage Earner Protection Program Overpayment Appeal Form. It asks for the necessary information that the Board needs to consider and determine the application to appeal. Not completing this form may cause delays in the appeal process.

The Board has an e-filing Web Portal (Portal) service, which allows an applicant to file their Portable Document Format (PDF) documents in the Board’s centralized document filing system. If the applicant chooses to file their document electronically using the Portal, they should not forward a hard copy of the same document to the Board. The electronic version will be considered the original copy.

The application to appeal may also be filed by courier, mail, registered mail, or in person at one of the Board’s locations in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Dartmouth or Ottawa. In accordance with the Board’s Regulations, the application to appeal will be considered filed as of the date the Board receives it or, when registered mail is used, the date it was mailed to the Board.

Request File from the Minister

After the CIRB receives the application to appeal, it will inform the Minister in writing that an application to appeal has been filed, provide a copy of the application to the Minister and request from the Minister a copy of any document that the Minister relied on for the purpose of making the decision being appealed. A copy of this letter will also be provided to the applicant.

Notice of the Appeal by the Board

When the CIRB receives the relevant documents from the Minister, it will send the applicant an acknowledgment letter acknowledging receipt of the application to appeal and will include a copy of relevant documents. A copy of the letter will also be provided to the Minister and the trustee or receiver handling the bankruptcy or receivership proceedings for the applicant’s former employer. The letter will also inform the parties of the name and contact information of the CIRB Industrial Relations Officer (IRO) appointed to the file. The IRO is responsible for managing the file and assisting the parties. The application to appeal will then be submitted to the Board for its consideration. The IRO is available to explain the Board’s processes, answer any questions and discuss any issues that may arise during the conduct of the appeal.

For more information on the role of the IRO, please consult the Board’s Information Circular No. 1–The Role of the Board’s Industrial Relations Officers.

Representations by Minister

Pursuant to section 15(4) of the WEPP Act, the Minister may, in an appeal, make representations to the Board in writing. If the Minister wishes to do so, the Minister may file any written representations within 15 days from the receipt of the Board’s acknowledgment letter. In such a situation, the Minister will provide a copy of the representations to the parties and advise the Board in writing of the time and manner of service (delivery). If the Minister makes representations in writing to the Board, the applicant will have 10 days from the receipt of the Minister’s representations to file a reply.

External Adjudicators

The Chairperson of the Board may appoint a member of the CIRB or an external adjudicator to hear and determine an overpayment appeal under the WEPP Act. External adjudicators have all the powers, duties and functions as the Board regarding any matter to which they have been appointed, and their orders and decisions are considered to be the Board’s orders and decisions.

Decision of the Board

Once the Board determines the matter, the applicant will be informed of the Board’s decision in writing. A copy of the decision will also be provided to the Minister and to the trustee or receiver.

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