Extra unemployment benefits amid coronavirus pandemic

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – With a startling 6.6 million people seeking unemployment benefits last week, the United States has reached a grim landmark: More than one in 10 workers have lost their jobs in just the past three weeks to the coronavirus outbreak.

Congress has passed a massive relief package that expanded who is eligible for unemployment benefits — adding gig, contract and other part time workers who wouldn’t normally qualify. Benefits are open to others who’ve been impacted, such as workers who were quarantined, left work due to risk of exposure or to care for a family member.

Legal analyst, Dan Eaton, talked to Good Morning San Diego about the benefits available to anybody who has lost work amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The CARES Act includes $600 per week of additional unemployment benefits under the “Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation.”  That extra $600 per week ends at the end of July.  

To qualify for this and other special unemployment benefits under the CARES Act, the claimant must self-certify they are otherwise able to work and available for work and are “unemployed, partially unemployed, or unable or unavailable to work” for one of about a dozen pandemic-related reasons.

Someone diagnosed with COVID-19 qualifies, as does someone whose place of work has been closed due to the COVID-19 public health emergency.  

In general, applicants should try to file online unless they must call. And consider trying websites at off-hours when traffic is lower.

Be prepared with contact information for all their employers for the past 18 months, as well as proof of income. Double-check all your information as even minor errors can slow a claim.

Keep track of your efforts and if you are denied, you can appeal.



Categories: California News, Coronavirus, Good Evening San Diego, Good Morning San Diego, National & International News