Include earnings only. Over the course of your working life, you may have had periods where you had low or zero earnings. Such periods can occur for a variety of reasons, such as going to school or unemployment. The CPP offers protection against this by automatically dropping a number of years of your lowest earnings when calculating your benefit. Please note if you stopped working or received lower earnings to raise your children or as a result of a disability or had a divorce or separation, additional drop-out provisions may apply, which may increase the amount of your CPP benefit.