Frequently Asked Questions

Who is Western's EAP provider?
LifeWorks has been Western’s provider of an Employee (and family) Assistance Program (EAP) and wellness services since 2019. In addition to assistance via phone and in-person, additional web and app-based services provide for a comprehensive user experience and integrate with Western's other well-being programming.

Employees are encouraged to register for access to the LifeWorks website and/or the LifeWorks app. See instructions in the question How do I register and access LifeWorks?

What kind of issues can EAP counsellors help me resolve?
The EAP encourages employees and those close to them to seek help early, before a minor problem becomes more serious. EAP is a short-term and solution-focused counselling model designed to address one issue at a time. Not all counselling needs are best supported through the EAP model. If EAP is not suited to supporting the issues, the EAP counsellor may make a referral outside the program. When in doubt contact the EAP for guidance.

The program can help with just about any psychological, emotional or relationship concern:

  • Coping in the pandemic
  • Individual pressures
  • Family troubles
  • Couple and partnership difficulties and concerns
  • Family violence
  • Coping with illness or injury
  • Separation or divorce
  • Eldercare
  • Financial problems
  • Preparing for retirement
  • Legal consultations
  • Nutrition counselling
  • Health coaching
  • Relationship difficulties
  • Parenting
  • Addictions, drug or alcohol abuse
  • Stress - personal or job
  • Sexual abuse
  • Grief
  • Depression
  • Balancing work and family

Are there services other than counselling?
In addition to clinical counselling, LifeWorks offers telephone support using other professionals who are specialists in their field. These programs can help you optimize your current well-being by helping you prevent issues or get back on track. They also offer online programs in areas including Health & Well-being, Career & Workplace, Relationships, Family, Finances, Legal and online Group counselling. Call 1-855-597-2105 or login at and select Get CareNow. Additional programs are under Support & Resources > Online Programs.

How do I register and access LifeWorks?
All employees receive an invitation via email to sign up for online access when first eligible. The email contains a personal invitation code. Visit or download the mobile app from the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store and select Sign Up. If you have lost track of your invitation code, you will see a link “I can't find my invitation code” to request this be re-sent to you. Note that all emails are sent to your Western email account.

Is the username and password for my other Western accounts also used for LifeWorks?
No, you will not be able to use your Western Single Sign On to connect to LifeWorks. You will need to create a separate password.

Did the phone number for LifeWorks change?
Yes, in August 2022 LifeWorks launched 1-855-597-2105 for Western employees and their families to call for service.  This was one of the actions taken by LifeWorks in response to concerns raised by employees about wait times.  The phone number allows LifeWorks to focus on the experience of Western clients separately from other employers they support.

Who can access these services?
Counselling services are available to all employees of Western University as well as the employee's spouse and dependent children up to age 21 or up to age 25 if still in school full-time. See the question How do I arrange support for my minor child for additional details. When arranging services for themselves, an employee will be asked to identify their employer (Western University) and their employee group/union/association if they belong to one. Dependents can arrange service for themselves simply by providing the name of the employee and that they work for Western University. It's as easy as that!

Online access is also available to family members. An employee can invite their family members to set up their own online access. The employee logs into their own account to extend invitations.

At Login > select Profile > select Family > and then Invite Family Members.

From the LifeWorks app Login > select More > Invite Family

How do I arrange support for my minor child?
When a parent or child contacts EAP the EAP clinical team will work to establish if the individual understands the limits of confidentiality/consent and the service they are trying to access.

  • Child 16 and under: Needs consent from a parent.
  • 16 and over: A child can consent to counselling in Ontario.

Sometimes children need the services of a counsellor who specializes in supporting children. EAP does not offer specialized children’s counsellors, so if this is the case, EAP will offer to provide a referral.

Where EAP is not an appropriate fit to support the child directly, the family may consider whether family counselling would be of value, or, if the parent(s) may seek counselling to gain skills and ideas to assist them in supporting their child.

How can I receive support?
Ways to access counselling include calling 1-855-597-2105 or connecting through the Chat at LifeWorks or through the app.

  • Urgent or emergency support is available 24/7/365by calling 1-855-597-2105.
  • In-person counselling is a traditional session format, ideal for families or couples who need interaction. Call 1-855-597-2105 or connect through the Chat online or through the app.
  • Telephone counselling is convenient and ideal for time-restricted or travelling individuals.
  • Video counselling offers virtual face-to-face support, in the convenience and comfort of your home.
  • E-counselling via email exchange with a Counsellor is best suited for those most comfortable with written communication. It is also ideal for travelling individuals, providing support anywhere.
  • Chat provides instant support with a Counsellor online, via Lifeworks (under the ‘Support & Resources’ menu) or through the LifeWorks app.
  • Health and wellness resources are online and self-directed. Just login to LifeWorks to get access to hundreds of articles, tools and resources.

What should I expect when I call?
Your call will be answered by a Client Care Representative (CCR) on the Intake Team who is trained to connect you with the help you need to deal with the issue at hand. They will assess your situation, risk, needs and preferences and guide you to the assistance best suited to resolving your issue. They will ask you a series of questions, including the name of your employer to ensure you're eligible for the program.

I’ve experienced a long wait time to get through to LifeWorks. What are my options?
Call volume to EAP tends to be highest on Mondays and on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and this could result in longer wait times.  If possible, you may wish to try calling outside of these hours. Intake for EAP counselling, work-life services, and emergency counselling is available 24/7/365 at 1-855-597-2105.

The pandemic brought an increase demand for services and longer wait times. Since spring 2022 LifeWorks has returned to more normalized service levels. 80% of calls are routinely answered within 25 seconds and the average number of days to the first appointment being offered is within the 5-day goal.

LifeWorks has continued to invest in the attraction and retention of its staff, and in early 2022 it added a new call-back service for times when call volumes are higher than usual. The service allows you to keep your place in line and receive a call back if the wait time is longer than 5 minutes. Note that you must have a direct phone number (no extension) to use this service. For privacy, the call back from LifeWorks will show as 416-987-0001 (English) and 514-461-5444 (French) with no name displayed and they will not leave a message.

How do I make an appointment?
By calling 1-855-597-2105 you will be supported by a Client Care Representative (CCR) who will help you access appropriate services. These might include:

  • Speak immediately with a counsellor by phone 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.
  • Make an appointment to speak with a counsellor. Appointments are available in-person, by telephone or by video-conference and daytime, evening and weekend appointments are available.
  • Make an appointment with a professional in the areas of financial, legal, nutrition, family, career and health.
  • Access on-line programs.

Where is LifeWorks located?
There are two LifeWorks offices in London (on Pall Mall Street and on Wellington Road). There are also counsellors providing service from other locations throughout London and surrounding communities. You may prefer to access a counsellor closer to home, closer to work or in another area.

LifeWorks also has offices and counsellors across Canada as well as internationally. This means support is available for you and your family in many locations and time zones.

How many sessions am I eligible for?
There is no fixed number of sessions available to you. Each issue you'd like to work on will be handled one at a time and you will work with your counsellor towards achieving desired outcomes. This means you can access counselling multiple times each year as life unfolds and you'd like support with different challenges. EAP support is a short-term and solution-focused counselling model. Most issues will be supported in 2-5 sessions.

What if I have more than one issue I’d like help with?
Life rarely throws us just one challenge at time, and sometimes the issues are complex or inter-related. An EAP counselling model supports approaching one issue at a time. The counsellor will help you to determine what is the most urgent or impactful issue that you want to start with. Once that concludes, you start over again, generally with a different counsellor. If this is not appropriate for the complexity of your needs, it is possible that EAP isn’t the right approach at this time and you will be referred to other counselling resources.

If you are finding the challenges you face are impacting your ability to return to work or stay at work, or experiencing any troubles getting services required, please contact the Employee Well-being Consultant for your area.

Who are the EAP counsellors?
EAP counsellors are all professionally trained and have a minimum of a Master's degree and five years clinical experience. You may specify your preference for either male or female counsellor. Some counsellors may also speak another language, or specialize in a particular area. LifeWorks is working on growing their network and systems to be able to connect clients with counsellors who share a lived experience and will do their best to accommodate requests.

Who pays for the counselling?
Western University pays for the services accessed by employees and their dependents. The fees are paid up front and not tied to individual services, to protect your privacy.

Are part-time and contract employees eligible for this service?
Yes, all employees, regardless of contract type, are eligible to access these services.

Who will know that I'm using this service?
No one will know unless you tell them. EAP counselling only works if employees can be certain that services are entirely confidential. Both LifeWorks and Western take this very seriously. For added privacy, LifeWorks doesn't book back-to-back appointments for any Western employees or their family members. Your dependents should also be reassured that no one (including you!) will know if they have accessed the services. Also see 'What if one of my family members needs help?'

What reporting does Western receive?
Maintaining confidentiality is a cornerstone of EAP. With respect to EAP services, Western receives an aggregated report on a quarterly basis. No names or personal employee information are included. This report is shared with the EAP Committee, and each employee group at Western is eligible to have a representative. Reporting includes aggregate login information to and the LifeWorks app and frequently visited pages or topics. No individual user data is shared.

Will I be able to take time off work to use this service?
You will have the same opportunity to attend EAP counselling sessions as is provided under the existing policies for health care appointments. Also note that appointments are available evenings and weekends. Further, counselling by telephone and video-conference can be arranged with counsellors nation-wide to take advantage of time zones and extend hours of availability.

How long will it take to solve my problem?
There are no hard and fast rules, nor is there any guarantee your situation can be "fixed". Some problems can be worked out in a single phone call. Others may require a longer course of counselling and treatment from a specialized service to which you would be referred.

The EAP is designed to provide direct "short-term, solution-focused" counselling. You will work directly with your counsellor to identify goals and a plan.

If long-term or specialized counselling is required, the counsellor will assist you with a referral to another resource within your community. Community services may involve a fee.

What if one of my family members needs help?
EAP services are available to immediate family members of Western employees, including their spouse and dependent children up to age 21 or up to 25 if still in school full time. Note that laws governing minor children vary by province. Unless the law requires otherwise, services provided to children between age 16 and the local age of majority remain confidential. Because the successful resolution of a minor's problems often depends on parental support, counsellors usually encourage the minor to involve their parent(s). Also see How do I arrange support for my minor child

Why is Western backing this program?
We know that when you and your family are well, you can bring your best self to work. EAP is part of our efforts to continuously improve the programs we offer to support you and your family's well-being. We are confident that LifeWorks will provide the support you need to balance the various stresses in your life.

What is the Privacy Policy for LifeWorks?
When you first sign up for online access you will be presented with the Privacy Policy. If you wish to review this at any time, visit the LifeWorks Privacy and Cookies Policy webpage. The Privacy Policy has common language covering all of the lines of business LifeWorks is engaged in. It is important that you understand that not all of the possible data identified in the Privacy Policy applies to Western’s relationship with LifeWorks. Further to the details in the Privacy Policy, Western wishes to clarify that no data in the categories of financial information, transaction information, claims information, or job applicant information is part of the EAP program. Read some frequently asked questions about the LifeWorks Privacy Policy.

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