answers to your questions about the new unemployment benefits law

On Friday, major new unemployment benefits were signed into law — and they significantly expand who can collect unemployment, for how long, and how much you’ll receive.

Here are the highlights of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act:

• From now until July 31, everyone collecting unemployment will receive their regular state benefit, plus an additional $600 per week from the federal government.

• Once your state unemployment benefits run out (in most states that’s after 26 weeks), you’ll be able to get an additional 13 weeks of benefits on top of those.

• Between now and December 31, many people will be eligible to collect unemployment who usually aren’t: independent contractors, freelancers, gig workers, and other self-employed people, plus part-time workers and people who don’t have a long-enough work history to otherwise qualify. (This is only if you are unemployed because of the outbreak or unable to work because of it.)

Answers to some questions I’m hearing a lot:

What if I had accepted a new job but hadn’t started it yet and now the new job has fallen through because of this crisis?
You’ll be eligible for unemployment, assuming you’re not still working at your previous job. Go ahead and file.

What if I started a new job but quickly got laid off because of the crisis, and I don’t have much work history before this?
You’ll be eligible for unemployment, even if your work history wouldn’t normally be enough to qualify you. Go ahead and file.

What if I’m a recent grad who hasn’t started working yet (or someone else new to the workforce), had been looking for a job, but hadn’t found one yet?
You will not be eligible, unless you have a prior, recent work history.

What if I’m self-employed and my business isn’t bringing in money right now because of the crisis?
Freelancers, independent contractors, gig workers, and the self-employed will be eligible for unemployment though a new program called Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. (Your unemployment must be related to the coronavirus outbreak.) Go ahead and file.

What if I recently ran out of unemployment? Will I be eligible for the extension?
As best as I can tell, you will be eligible for the additional 13 weeks of extended benefits and the extra $600/week, but you’ll probably have to file again.

What if I’m not working because I have coronavirus or need to care for a family member who does?
You’ll be eligible for unemployment if you’re not working because you’re experiencing symptoms, have been advised by a health care provider to quarantine, or have received a diagnosis, or if you’re caring for a family member who has. Go ahead and file.

What if I’m unable to work because my child’s school or day care is closed because of the outbreak?
You’ll be eligible for unemployment. Go ahead and file.

What if I quit my job because of something related to coronavirus?
It depends on the specifics. If you quit because of one of the situations above (your child’s school closed and you need to care for them at home, or your doctor recommended you quarantine), you’ll be eligible for unemployment. But if you quit because you worried about the safety of continuing to work and your employer insisted on staying open, it doesn’t look like you’d be eligible.

{ 221 comments… read them below }

  1. Data Lady*

    What if the $600 exceeds what you would have made in your prior job? Are you cut off at what you would have received if working? My husband worked as a school crossing guard and that did not pay $600 per week.

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      You will get the full $600, plus your normal state benefits, even if it’s more than what you were earning at work. (There was some debate over this, but it turned out to be far easier/faster to implement this way.)

      1. Broke and Confused*

        So, we got the first IU check today, but it didn’t include the $600. Do you have to do something special or something to get the $600? I saw a FB post today from one of my state senators about it, that was the first we’d heard of it.

        My husband filed last week when the shut-down hit our state.

        1. Aitch Arr*

          What’s the effective date of your claim?

          Sources I’ve read say that the $600 will not be applied retroactively.

          1. Broke and Confused*

            Ahh. Thanks. Didn’t catch the pass date. Not particularly observant these days-I’m essential and stupid people going places they shouldn’t are driving me nuts. I’ve seen more customers since the shutdowns started than we’d had since Christmas.

            I’m torn between being grateful I’m essential and have a paycheck, and wanting to hide out/quarantine at home in peace.

        2. Wired Wolf*

          I still haven’t received any UI benefits after 3 weeks; my status is “Ineligible Not Denied” (I did receive one small payment the last week I worked, but nothing since). It seems as if they are waiting for my company to provide paperwork or something relating to our “retainer pay”. Would I still get the extra 600 even if my regular payments are on hold (I have no idea why)?

      2. Pin Curls*

        Hello Alison, is there any you could consider pinning this so it shows at the top of your website? I keep referring family and friends to this page but now that it is in Older Posts the less comp savvy people are having a hard time finding it (even though I have sent them the specific link), and it has very useful information.

  2. MollyG*

    I have a question that I have been unable to find a clear answer to: Am I eligible for the $600 per week if I was already on unemployment before all this started? I have read two places that say yes, but I am looking for a more knowledgeable answer.

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      Yes. You’re currently still receiving UI? Then definitely yes. If your benefits ran out before late January, I think no — but you’d want to verify that.

      1. Officecat*

        I’ve been collecting unemployment, my 26 weeks is finished just now. I’m hoping to be able to get on an extension soon. I’ve been checking my state’s website (Colorado).

  3. no clever username*

    Thank you for this! It answers many of the questions I’ve had.

    Do you know if the requirement that you prove you’ve looked for a job in the past week is waived in some or all situations?

  4. Literal Girl*

    Alison, thanks so much for providing all of this really important information! It’s all really confusing.

  5. Mona Lisa Vito*

    This might be a silly question, but is a temp/seasonal worker the same as a “gig” worker?

      1. WellRed*

        But it’s unclear if the UI applies to temp/seasonal workers, which is different from gig workers.

        1. A Ginger*

          I wonder about this too. In my state it looks like temp work (unless temp-to-perm) does not typically qualify. The spirit of the new rules would seem like it should count, but I can’t find anything to verify it.

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      Different, but I think you could file because they’re waiving the usual requirements for how much you need to have worked in the previous quarters.

  6. Lucette Kensack*

    How does unemployment for reduction in hours work now?


    – Are folks whose hours are reduced eligible for the $600 extra (or a pro-rated amount of that)?
    – How much do your hours have to be reduced? (I’m sure the definition of “substantially reduced hours” varies by state — but how do you find out, when it’s impossible to get through to the state unemployment offices and they’re asking you not to call.)
    – If someone starts collected partial unemployment for their reduced hours, how does it impact the 26 (or 39) weeks of available unemployment? Are the weeks pro-rated? Or does the clock start with any collection? So if someone’s hours were cut now, but they anticipate having more hours cut (or a full layoff) in the future, would it behoove them to avoid collecting (if they can afford it) because they may need more weeks in the future?

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      These questions are beyond my knowledge — I’m sorry! You may need to file in your state to find out. (Normally I would say to call and ask them but they’re beyond swamped right now.)

      1. Lucette Kensack*

        Hmm. Trying to figure out where else can we can track down answers.

        Filing would answer the first two, but not the last one — which is the biggest issue for folks at my organization. We anticipate further reductions/layoffs, and nobody wants to collect $75/week in unemployment when that might prevent them from collecting the full amount in the future.

        1. Karen*

          I’m definitely interested in anything you find related to this. (And I’ll update if I find anything!)

          1. Tex*

            In Texas the benefit is 26 times your weekly max. So if you collect less than your max (got a day or two of work for example) it extends your eligibility weeks until the benefit runs out. That will now likely be 39 times weekly max.

            1. Dr.PopcornMD*

              NY operates the same way, with the caveat that your eligibility ends either when the benefits run out OR your benefit year ends.

              1. Lucette Kensack*

                What does this mean? What is a “benefit year”?

                (I’m not HR, as I’m sure you can all tell based on my lack of knowledge on this. I’m just trying to figure this out for my team in the absence of a helpful HR system.)

                1. A UI Developer*

                  Benefit year is the amount of time that you have to collect benefits. For Unemployment you have 52 weeks to collect 26 (now, +13) weeks of ui benefits.

        2. Natalie*

          Does your UI system accept questions by email? You will probably wait a while for a response but at least you won’t be sitting on hold.

      2. old curmudgeon*

        “Beyond swamped” ain’t the half of it – the UI agency in my state is receiving 160 calls per second – PER SECOND – from claimants this week. And I don’t live in all that large or populous a state.

      3. Tkwanttoknow*

        What if unemployment runs out today and I am unable to contact/reach anyone to have them extended

        1. Officecat*

          If you unemployment is running out right now, but you still have days left in your claim year, your claim will go inactive. When they roll out the extensions you should be able to reopen your claim. In my state I think it’s just a few clicks on the website to reopen the claim, but I’m not exactly sure how it will all go.

          You should be ok if you can wait a bit for your state to get everything set up.

    2. JSPA*

      Can your org potentially turf people out cyclically, so it’s all-or-none for any particular month? Or are you handling it the way you are to keep people on health care longer, for as long as possible?

      1. Lucette Kensack*

        Yeah, we’re trying to keep folks covered with health care (and keep programs running, and spread the pain in an equitable way, and ensure that folks are eligible for unemployment — i.e., it turns out we actually need to reduce folks a little bit more than planned so they lose enough hours to be eligible for a check).

    3. UISpecialist*

      With the caveat that it does change a little by state:

      – yes, folks whose hours are reduced are eligible for the $600 amount if they are eligible for any unemployment assistance. It is not pro-rated.

      – If you start collecting regular unemployment now, you will have up to 39 weeks until December. At that point, you may be able to collect an additional 13 weeks, depending on your state, because all states have some form of what is called “extended benefits” that kick in when unemployment is high. I would apply now and collect the $600 payment through July.

    4. Lady Catherine de Bourgh*

      I’m trying to figure this out too! I’ve been cut down to half time from a full time manager role. First I was furloughed unpaid for a full week, now I’m working half time hours.

      I filed with my state last week, the first day I was furloughed but haven’t received any response yet.

    5. The Bad Place*

      I actually just asked about this, for MA at least, if you apply now for a loss of wages, or (in my case) a loss of a second job, it does apply to that 26 weeks, which I wish someone had told me! However, they are extending it by 13 weeks I believe.

      However, depending on how much you make at your primary job (assuming you lost your secondary) you might qualify for the same amount in unemployment benefits. In my case, because my second job was below the minimum, they bump it up to the minimum and since my salary is lower, the amount I could get for losing my primary would be that same amount. I went from 45 hours (10 at a restaurant, 35 at a non-profit) to 35 only, and they said I would receive $588 a week regardless. I filled out a form and got a call back, so not waiting on hold, but it did take a few days.

      So in terms of your third point, def worth raising, BUT if you file now, you may qualify for the additional $600 a week from the federal government, which is only available through July 31st, so you might not be risking a lot to file now, and save that money in case you are fully laid off.

  7. miho*

    I work a full time job, which is my main source of income, and a part time job that pays very minimal (It’s only about $50 per week, and it’s a job I do for fun). If I am laid off from my full time, do I still qualify for unemployment benefits since I’m technically still employed by the part time position?

      1. ThatGirl*

        With the caveat that it may vary by state, yes, you should, though the benefits may be reduced. During my first unemployment period back in 2007-08, I was working part time for minimum wage, and just had to account for that income every week. On the occasional weeks my check was over a certain amount, I did not get any UI, but it basically just prolonged my eligibility. I feel like $50/week wouldn’t even meet the threshhold to reduce benefits, but as I said, ymmv.

    1. Joan Holloway*

      Any chance you work for a trivia company in the NYC area? I’m in the same situation!

    2. Mel_05*

      You probably qualify. In my home state (Indiana) you can file for unemployment if you are *under* employed – that’s all the time, not just now.

      I was unemployed last year, but I was still picking up some freelance work here and there. I just had to report it in my weekly, online check-in and they would dock my unemployment money the amount of whatever I got for freelancing.

      1. Sally*

        This was my experience, too. In the past when I was getting unemployment, I was also working temp when I could. When I worked, I made about as much as I would have received in unemployment, so that week, I didn’t get any money from unemployment. But I did get unemployment for the weeks in which I didn’t work.

  8. What's with Today, today?*

    Thank you! My husband is a solo Criminal Defense attorney and his courthouses have 100% shut down. We’re super rural and they can’t do anything online, and the Governor granted the courts exceptions on releasing people and pleas and such, (the state defense bar is suing the governor over the order) so his income is gone.

  9. Allison*

    This actually puts me at ease, last night my mind was racing as I was figuring out how we were gonna make it work if/when I get laid off from my current job, because right now there’s very little demand for my current skillset, and that’ll probably be the case until the crisis starts to subside, which might be a while.

    I just . . . I really felt like buying a house and getting married were within reach for my boyfriend and I. Not that we were gonna do it this year, but within the next few years. The idea of our savings being depleted and going into debt just to stay afloat, or having to move in with my parents when our lease is up because we can’t make rent anymore . . . just feels like a huge step back. It feels like everything is falling apart. And I know this isn’t my fault, but that just makes me feel powerless.

    1. pope suburban*

      Same, friend. I don’t know that my husband and I were even to the point of buying a house, but getting rid of debts and starting to save were on the table. We graduated right into the last recession, which created both the debt (Student loans for him, living expenses for both of us) and the hardship in getting out of it (Unemployment/serious underemployment for me). This whole situation has put me through the highlight reel of losing my first post-grad job in December 2008, struggling through unemployment, and taking toxic jobs that only barely paid enough to subsist. So your feelings of powerlessness really resonate with me. I hope that you and your boyfriend end up being able to weather this with only a minor dent in your earning/savings. You’re not alone in this, which I know you know but which I think still bears saying as a reminder. You’re both capable people and I hope that the people around you see that, and also that the financial Powers That Be like your landlord treat you with empathy and decency. Thinking good thoughts for you from the other side of the internet.

    2. A*

      Same, I feel you. I literally *just* kicked off a house hunt right before this hit. As a single first time home buyer, this was supposed to be the year I’d reap the rewards of 10+ years of sacrifice. I’m still hopeful it will be, but definitely not the experience I was hoping for.

      In the mean time, I have a very useless pre-approval letter that is about to expire. Might go ahead and frame it as I feel it’s a fairly accurate summary of the ironic undertones of my life lol.

    3. Awkie Turtles*

      Same same. The first thing I did when all this happened was put aside my dreams for the future and just concentrated on getting through this. My spouse is very likely to get laid off in the next month or so and there is some risk that I will take a salary cut and we’re in such an expensive city. We’re tightening our belts hugely and every week we have jobs, I am so grateful. However, this puts my mind at ease that we MAY come out of this not completely decimated and that hope is good enough for me right now. In the meantime, I’m trying to do what I can for those who are already wiped out from this.

    4. TheAssistant*

      I feel this so much! We were planning a wedding and thinking about saving for a house. It seemed like a great time for my fiancee to do a software engineering immersive. She graduates from that in three weeks, into this market, with now that debt looming over our heads. I feel like my whole world was turned upside-down in the span of days.

      Nothing productive to add. Just. Ugh.

  10. JKP*

    I have a small business working for myself and have had to shut down for 5 weeks, plus will have much less business in the months to come because of this. The new Paycheck Protection Program will loan my business money to cover things like payroll (for me), health insurance, rent, and utilities and forgive the loan for money spent on those business expenses. For many small business owners (even self-employed) that might end up being better than Unemployment.

    1. Tuckerman*

      This is good to know. My husband is a self-employed massage therapist- he rents a room in a spa. Our state hasn’t shut down spas, but he’s basically making only enough to cover the cost of his rent. It looks like with the PPP to have 8 weeks of payroll forgiven, you need to prove your payroll was the same now and a year from now. Do you know how he would show what his “payroll” is and prove that a year from now it is the same, when there’s enough variability we don’t know what he’ll be making a year from now?

      1. JKP*

        I think what they are looking for is that the company kept their staff employed and used the loan money to cover that. I think if your husband is the only staff and using the money to cover his own normal payroll amount, it would be fine. But there are a lot of local resources to help small businesses figure out how to cover their operating expenses while shut down.

        The SBA is having twice a day webinars to go over disaster relief loans (which are different than the CARE act loans). They also have a $10,000 emergency advance available on those loans. My state has local counselors you can schedule time for a free consultation to walk through the best options for your business.

        I’m pretty much in the same boat as your husband, very similar industry, small business of 1 employee. I’ve been researching and jumping on all the webinars I can. Links to follow.

        1. JKP*

          SBA twice daily webinars on the Economic Injury Loan Program (they have a Q&A at the end of the call)

          Powerpoint slides for the webinar

          SBA comparison chart for the different loan programs

          Chamber of Commerce guide for small businesses

  11. NW Mossy*

    If I can piggyback, the CARES Act also has a number of provisions in it that increase your ability to withdraw funds from your retirement account if you’re impacted by COVID-19. That impact can be either medical (you or a close family member gets sick; quarantines) or financial (job loss/hours reduction/inability to work), and the withdrawals are exempt from early penalties that would normally apply. While it’s by no means an easy choice to draw down funds that your future self will depend on, I wanted to call out this option because this expanded access can help a lot as a financial bridge.

    If anyone has specific questions about the retirement plan aspects of this law, I’m happy to help answer to the best of my ability. I’m in the industry and there’s analysis flying left, right, and center that we’re all trying to digest!

    1. Aamandaa*

      Is this something you can self-certify, or are there any document requirements? My unemployment is about gone, I was offered a job two weeks ago that a day later was put on hold “indefinitely” due to covid. Not sure what, if anything, i might need to prove this?

      1. NW Mossy*

        The law allows for employers to rely on a self-certification from the employee that they meet the definition of impacted. While some employers may require documentation, I expect that most will not given that it’s a barrier for them (administrative hassle) as much as it is for their staff.

        1. Aamandaa*

          Does this apply even though I’m unemployed? Will the employer I worked for when I started the 403(b) have to approve?

          Thank you!

          1. NW Mossy*

            Yes, it should still apply even if you no longer work there. You’d likely be eligible to take your money out even without the COVID-19 withdrawal provisions because you no longer work there, but the COVID-19 option would exempt you from penalties.

            Some employers do their own approvals for withdrawals, but many (especially large ones) contract with their retirement plan provider to do that for them. While I can’t speaking for every provider, all the major players are hard at work on incorporating COVID-19 withdrawals into their normal process so that participants can access their money.

    2. Tuckerman*

      Thanks for chiming in. My employer doubles my contribution, so it’s a super generous benefit. But the stipulation is I can’t withdraw anything until I leave my company (private not-for-profit University, if that matters). Do you know if the CARES act affects that restriction? Really don’t want to resort to this, but wondering if it is an option.

      1. NW Mossy*

        You’re right that retirement plans are normally governed by rules in their plan documents about when people can take money out. Part of what CARES does (which is typical for retirement plan legislation) is that it allows plans to start allowing people to immediately take withdrawals even if they weren’t able to before, so long as the plan eventually updates their documents – this is called “good faith compliance.”

        That said, plans aren’t required to make CARES withdrawals available – each employer can decide for themselves. In my not-advising-a-client, private-citizen capacity, I’d argue that it’s in their best interest to do so if at all possible, given the severity of the crisis and the potential PR nightmare of not allowing them.

  12. Aamandaa*

    For those who were already on unemployment – any idea whether the extension will be added automatically, or do you somehow/somewhere need to apply for it? I haven’t been able to find any state (MA) or federal guidance on this, and since I have one more week of benefits left, I’m getting nervous.

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      Normally it’s automatic but since you’re very close to the end, I would plan on refiling just in case they don’t have it all up and running by the time you run out.

  13. StellaBella*

    Wow thanks so much Alison. I have shared the link to this page with 5 people who may find it useful.

    1. Ask a Manager* Post author

      WTF, seriously? I am one person and I cannot possibly write about legislation and policy in countries I don’t have any expertise in, and I’m not going to *not* give US readers the help I can give them, particularly when the majority of my readership is in the US. This is a really messed up thing to say on the site you’re reading for free, and I certainly encourage you to go find a site that’s more to your liking.

      1. Loyal reader*

        You go Allison! Thanks for posting this incredibly helpful information. Ignore the trolls, we love you.

      2. Ask a Manager* Post author

        To say nothing of the fact that this is an additional post today on top of the four regular daily posts, although I didn’t have to do it that way. Please read somewhere else.

        1. BRR*

          I’m so sorry Alison anybody would feel to urge to make this type of comment towards you for compiling a post like this which I know is you going above and beyond to compile a centralized, comprehensive resource. I hope one person doesn’t overshadow the immense amount of aid you’re giving others (which I couldn’t even begin to guess how high that number is).

      3. Starbuck*

        I have to assume this person must be stressed and struggling wherever they are and perhaps in a worse benefits situation than even we have in the US and they’ve made the very poor decision to take out their frustration on an easily available target. Because otherwise the perspective of that comment is just too dumb to contemplate!

      4. tea*

        Allison ,
        You are our rainbow in this disaster !

        Nym’s snarky meltdown is not about you – he can go kick rocks !

    2. Turquoisecow*

      This has always been a US-centric site. Even though questions have come in from international readers, it’s always been made quite clear that Alison’s expertise is in US matters. I don’t know why you’d expect otherwise.

    3. HBJ*

      Why >wouldn’t< a US-based writer on a US-based site for a mostly US-based readership have US-only content?

    4. Archaeopteryx*

      Maybe start your own website then? Or skip the content that doesn’t interest you.

    5. MI Dawn*

      I’m sure Alison would be delighted if you wished to post about what your country is doing to help so that readers in that country would know. She can’t do it all.

    6. pope suburban*

      We look forward to your guest post that will address employment issues in every other country, at a similar level of detail.

    7. BRR*

      What is wrong with you? Clearly you just wanted to get a rise out of people, which you obviously succeeded at, but something is seriously messed up with you to troll all of the extra effort Alison has put into helping others during this time. There are very few individuals who are well versed in multiple countries’ recent aid and I would argue it’s better to have some sort of focus than a wide ranging set of facts. The blog wouldn’t be as effective if it was a worldwide office advice blog because the advice would be all over the place.

    8. [insert witty user name here]*

      Sad to see this type of ignorant-only comment on here.

      Alison – thank you for hosting an incredibly useful FREE-TO-USER site that has been a wonderful resource for so many people wanting to help themselves.

    9. JSPA*

      If your country also has a “new unemployment benefits law,” and if you feel like putting in the work to compile your county’s information, and if you’re not a jerk about it, I suspect Alison would have been quite gracious about letting you put up a spare post for your country.

      As it is, the US has less of a social safety net than any other first world country (not to mention some third world countries). Plus, while we have a lot of health care, we don’t have a health care “system” in any normal sense of the word. This post will likely literally make the difference, for some of us, between being homeless (and hungry) on the one hand, and being able to keep a roof over our heads and food in our bellies.

      If you’re in a country that has protections that already do either of those two things, it’s particularly egregiously offensive to complain about this post. Otherwise, it’s just garden variety tone deaf and rude.

    10. Teddyduchampssleepingbag*

      Wow that was uncalled for. Allison is super super helpful and she is also very nice. She even goes out of her way when she can and answers emails even if she isnt printing the persons question. Allison this person sucks. Fire them from the comments.

  14. Anon4this*

    What if I had accepted a new job but hadn’t started it yet and now the new job start date keeps getting pushed back further and further into the future due to COVID19? Am I eligible for unemployment benefits?

    1. XRae*

      That is what I was wondering!

      I have an individual that had accepted our offer and was scheduled to start the week after our office had to close the physical building. While current employees are able to work remotely, we have not been able to start this person yet. We are not pulling the offer because we want them to start ASAP once we are back in the office. I feel terrible for them as they were already unemployed when we started the hiring process.

      1. JSPA*

        Any chance you could find a self-contained project and pay them off of freelance funds, as a stopgap?

      2. Sally*

        Is it possible to get them started remotely? My company has onboarded a couple of people in the last several weeks that we have been working from home. At least they can get started working and earning money.

        1. Pennalynn Lott*

          I second this. We had a manager start a week ago Monday. Our Sr VP went into the office to give her a laptop and let her get her badge and sign HR paperwork.

          If your management / IT / HR practices social distancing and utilizes a healthy amount of hand sanitizer during the equipment hand-off, everyone should be OK.

  15. MI Dawn*

    Thank you for this, Alison! I’m actually one of the lucky ones – my company is essential and I can WFH safely throughout this horrible time, but both of my children have been badly hit by this – one has been put on half-time work and the other child’s SO was laid off. They will get by – barely – but the extra money will be a blessing to them.

  16. Pugs*

    I was wondering what happens if my salary has been reduced (and I’m being asked to work a limited amount of days) but I am still considered “exempt”. Basically, I’m getting my full benefits but I’m working less/getting paid less. I was having a really hard time finding information on that online

    1. Natalie*

      In most states, wage reductions above a certain threshold will allow you to collect UI for the difference. Your state’s application should have a section for that.

      1. Pugs*

        Ok thanks! I can’t apply for it until Friday so I guess I’ll see what happens when I fill it out . I couldn’t find any info on my state’s (Colorado) UI website specifically about exempt workers so I’m not totally hopeful.

    2. Deloris Van Cartier*

      I’ve been wondering that too. I’m exempt but it looks like I’m going to have to take a pay cut. I’ve only seen talk about cutting hours but not your salary if your not an hourly worker. So confusing!

      1. Pugs*

        Yeah that was my same issue. I also reached out to this group of women I know that are politically minded and one of them is trying to get me in touch with a state rep’s staff that is familiar with this stuff…

    3. elsie432*

      @Pugs: I think it varies based on state. My friend works in NY but lives in NJ. He’s an exempt employee whose hours and salary have been cut to 80% of normal. In NY, you don’t get to apply for unemployment if you make over $500/week, so he doesn’t qualify. If he worked in NJ, he would have qualified for a reduced unemployment benefit.

      1. Lady Catherine de Bourgh*

        Yep, it does. In Virginia, if you make more than the minimum with your reduced hours (and the minimum is around $375) then you can’t collect anything.

  17. Not So Super-visor*

    THANK YOU!!! I just had to furlough employees and this has a lot of information that my employees have been asking me.

  18. Pennalynn Lott*

    I’m a co-owner of a small business (only four employees plus us two partners). Our business has been hit hard. Are we, the partners, eligible for anything besides a loan?

  19. anonlurkertotoro*

    I have a full time job and I am a freelance musician on the side. I had $1500 in gigs directly canceled due to covid (have emails/texts/other proof), and a significant decrease in bookings now (that is to say none).

    Can I apply for unemployment for this freelance work that has been directly affected by the virus, even though I have a full time W2 job?

    I feel slightly guilty and greedy for even asking, but I have the side job because we need the money.

    I looked on our state’s unemployment site a couple of days ago, but it hadn’t been updated with info for freelancers/self-employed people, and I’m not sure if I even officially count as a freelancer/self employed for the purposes of this law, since its not my primary income.

    1. anonlurkertotoro*

      Just re-checked my state’s unemployment web page – they are awaiting guidance from federal authorities.

      If anyone out there reads this and has any guesses, I’m open to speculating on this with someone besides me debating this with myself.

      1. WellRed*

        Wild speculation here, but where I am, a vet with a retirement pension who was laid off from his job didn’t qualify because he is still drawing his pension. Doesn’t seem like you could collect for freelance gig if you have full time employment.

    2. JSPA*

      Any chance of virtual gigs? There are still weddings, “home disco nights,” and other virtual parties. The pay might be a lot less, but there’s no travel cost, if you already have a good internet connection and a good microphone.

    3. Brett*

      Remember that you are really running a small business with pass-through income. You might look for SBA help instead.

      1. anonlurkertotoro*

        I’ve looked at the small business stuff, but it doesn’t seem to apply to me. I don’t have inventory, I don’t rent any spaces, I don’t do payroll (I just move money over from the biz checking to the personal checking), don’t have employees, etc

  20. Wired Wolf*

    I was able to file for UI and get approved, but my benefits (MA) have been “On Hold” for the past two weeks. I have filed claims each week as normal, have no idea what else they need, and according to my employer they submitted everything.

    I am receiving “Continuance Pay” (basically we’re all still on the books, not laid off but not working due to CV-19, can be called back when things clear up), but on the initial application I was directed NOT to count that as income. The one time that I did (as I was told by HR) in hopes that that was the holdup, UI went into my bank account and sucked that amount out even though I was not and have not been receiving any payments. I did submit my newest pay stub that reflects my zero-hour status.

    Has anyone had a similar problem, or have any advice?

    1. Sally*

      That seems wrong! I hope this gets straightened out and that you get your money back and start getting UI.

      1. Wired Wolf*

        Now I’m wary about claiming this coming week reporting it as income (knowing that the same thing will happen) but it feels like I have to now. I did contact UI customer service, but knowing what they’re dealing with right now… I emailed HR again outlining exactly what happened, what I’m doing and what they’re doing (they inexplicably sent me a disability certification form but I’m not disabled in a way that affects employment).

        Tempted to remove my direct-deposit info until this is sorted out.

        1. Wired Wolf*

          (“they” in my next-to-last sentence refers to the state, just reread that and thought it was confusing)

  21. VERY VERY Anon*

    This is…extremely timely information because I was laid off today. The travel industry has taken a hit, to say the least.

  22. Mine Own Telemachus*

    I’m an independent contractor whose contract position was eliminated about a month before the crisis, but now cannot get hired in my field because of the crisis (multiple employers have informed me that they’ve decided not to hire right now). My situation SHOULD qualify for the pandemic unemployment assistance, but the Labor Department hasn’t issued guidelines on that to states yet. should I apply and risk getting rejected before those guidelines are set? I’m worried about that happening.

    1. zora*

      You shouldn’t worry about getting rejected, you can always appeal a UI decision, usually multiple times. It doesn’t affect your file to get rejected. I would go ahead and file as soon as you can, and be prepared to appeal if needed as things change.

    1. Tuckerman*

      I’d recommend checking with with your office of student employment. The University I work for is continuing to pay students based on their normal schedule for the rest of the term, even if they cannot work remotely.

    2. KoiFeeder*

      My university is still paying me, even though under no circumstances am I supposed to come in.

      I suspect that in the venn diagram of “schools that are not paying students who had work-study jobs” and “schools that unilaterally kicked everyone out of the dorms” is, if not a circle, at least close to one.

    3. Management Material*

      Directly from the Department of Education: “For students enrolled and performing FWS at a campus that must close due to COVID-19, or for a FWS student who is employed by an employer that closes as a result of COVID-19, the institution may continue paying the student Federal work-study wages during that closure if it occurred after the beginning of the term, the institution is continuing to pay its other employees (including faculty and staff), and the institution continues to meet its institutional wage share requirement. ” It says “may,” so it depends on the school, but this is money that was most likely already allocated to you at the beginning of the year and can’t be used for any other purpose other than paying FWS wages, so it looks promising – but they may be working with a limited staff and having some issues with timing (plus you usually have to submit timecards, so they may be operating with an abundance of caution since there is no real guidance)

  23. Anonymom*

    Thank you so much for sharing! My husband is a self-employed carpenter and all of his projects have been put on hold due to COVID-19 concerns. What a relief that he can apply for benefits!

  24. Laura in NJ*

    All I know is that I don’t qualify since I haven’t worked one day since 9/2013. It’s just going to be that much harder to find a job now.

    1. JS*

      I feel you. I’m long term unemployed (my 6 months of unemployment ran out long ago). The hopelessness of job hunting just got a whole lot worse. Had been carefully saving up to buy a house for years previously and all that money has nearly disappeared just paying bills and necessities.

      1. Karlee*

        Don’t lose hope. My sister has been job hunting for a year and just got an offer for a great job, starting a week from Monday. She’ll be working remotely during the pandemic and they’re sending her a full tech setup. It CAN happen!

        1. JSPA*

          So long as she doesn’t need to send them $50 first… there are scams of that sort going around.

  25. TravelCompanyGirl*

    Alison, is there anything specific we need to do to get this money, or are we all set if we’ve already applied for UI in our states?

    1. LQ*

      You need to go in every week and request benefits. You have to request weekly! The money doesn’t just show up. You have to request it every week.

      1. TravelCompanyGirl*

        I know – my past two weeks are “on hold” but I got approved so I was just wondering how it would work.

  26. Teekanne aus Schokolade*

    In response to the international troll, here’s a thank you from a thrice-daily reader in Germany (an American who can’t qualify for any US perks). You got me through the end of my MBA, Alison, keep on keeping on. Also, I want a AaM hat, if you sell them ;)

    1. WellRed*

      Hats especially now that so many of us are freed from the daily grind of office-worthy grooming.

      1. Teekanne aus Schokolade*

        This is another big thing! I guess AaM sweatpants would also be nice :)

  27. Mel_05*

    Thanks for sharing this! I’m fortunate to be working from home, but it’s good to have a clear resource to point others to.

  28. If the devil were to explode and evil were gone forever what sort of party would you have*

    I might have missed this but is there any estimation as to when the $600/week will begin? The state website says I don’t need to do anything additional, as long as I am eligible for state UI, I automatically quailfy for hte federal UI.

    I filed my claim for my state UI yesterday, Monday, and my claim was accepted just wondering when I can expect to see the funds for both.

    1. ThatGirl*

      Usually UI starts within a week or so, it may take a little longer for the extra funds to kick in.

  29. Art3mis*

    Thank You! My husband got furloughed on Friday and his job is the bulk of our income. Does anyone know if the $600 will come with the usual payment from the state or will it come separately from the Fed?

    1. Big D*

      It will come via the state. It will either be added to your regular weekly benefit, or sent as a separate $600 payment. Once the program gets rolling you’ll receive it weekly. Prob won’t kick in for a few weeks

  30. Confused*

    My company is furloughing with 20% of your salary and full benefits. Will I be eligible for unemployment if I get furloughed?

    1. Mel_05*

      It probably depends on your state. In mine you’re eligible even if you’re “under employed”. You’ll have to tell them how much you received from your employer each week and they’ll deduct that from the funds you would receive if you were’re getting anything.

  31. Alex*

    I was laid off from my current job when it closed because of COVID. But within the last year, I left a job voluntarily in a different state to move to my current state. My estimated claim is $0, I assume because of this. Anyone know if this restriction is lifted within this legislation? (If it helps, I moved from WA to IL and am filing my claim in IL)

    1. Rachel 2: Electric Boogaloo*

      Also in IL. Looks like as long as you made at least $1600 in the job you were just laid off from, you should be eligible – especially since you were laid off due to COVID. The voluntarily leaving a job rule only kicks in if you file for unemployment after leaving that particular job. (Even then, though, there are cases in which you would still qualify.)

  32. Alger*

    I’m glad the US government is stepping up. Am I reading it right though that people on unemployment are receiving the normal 2/3 and $600 each week? I’m still employed (essential business) but make so much less than that. Now I wish I had been furloughed like some of the others at my company.

    1. Alger*

      Actually, with the paycut that they did for the time that covid is affecting things, I make less than 600/week total. That sucks

    2. ThatGirl*

      Yes, it’s normal state benefits *plus* $600. Which may end up being more than you made at your job, but it’s only 4 months at this point.

      1. Alger*

        It’s just a personal bummer, the paycut is only 10%, but I was already living close to the wire and that loss hurts. I was happy to be among the non-furloughed because at least it was something and I wouldn’t have to go into as much debt while everything was closed, but now I get no assistance. And have to work to cover all the people who aren’t allowed to come in.

      1. Alger*

        Nope, furloughed people keep their benefits, just don’t get paid. Which I’m super pleased that my company did, they’re definitely trying to do the right thing in this weird and hard time. I guess the one benefit I keep is accruing PTO, but I can’t exactly pay rent with that, haha

    3. ...*

      Yeah most of the people we furloughed will probably get more than their salary, but quite a bit! Plus the $1200 stimulus a lot of people will make more money being furloughed than working.

      1. Big D*

        A large number of those super lucky furloughed employees will go from “furloughed” to legitimately unemployed by the time this is over. That money is going to help pay the bills when UI benefits inevitably run out and they‘re still swimming in a job market with 20 – 30 million other newly jobless, highly qualified people. This isn’t “fun” money.

        Many, many Americans are sacrificing literally everything they have right now. They are going into debt or going bankrupt, losing life savings, losing access to healthcare, racking up medical debt (or going without care), facing severely disrupted or destroyed careers, and will be contending with foreclosures and evictions, homelessness, destroyed credit, insurmountable debt, hunger, and massively increased rates of suicide, alcoholism, and drug addiction in the near future. Domestic abuse is spiking. Millions of children living in food-insecure households depend on the public school system for adequate sustenance; children are literally going hungry right now. Millions of people are giving up every single thing they have now and what they might have had in the future so that you and yours don’t get sick. Yes, this situation sucks for everyone, but for some of us this is going to have a catastrophic effect on the trajectory of the rest of our lives. Maybe try to put those 14 weeks of $600 payments into perspective

    4. Lady Catherine de Bourgh*

      Just want to point out that most people don’t actually get 2/3 of their pay for unemployment – there’s a state maximum that is in most states fairly small. In mine, the most you can get is around $350 a week. So it’s not exactly living large.

      1. Alger*

        For sure, but with +600 that’s more then I make per week normally, and so even more then I’ll be making while working under a paycut. I know the real takeaway is that I chose to work in a non-profit field that requires college debt but doesn’t pay enough to live without stressing about money all the time.

  33. Specks*

    How does “because of covid-19” get defined? Our organization has recently lost a lot of funding and is slated to restructure and lay off about half of its staff in May. While this is a normal and not covid-driven unemployment situation, the job postings in the area have always been low (I’m in a specialized field) and have now basically disappeared. Are my coworkers and I entitled to any of the additional unemployment benefits, or are we limited to the 12 weeks NC normally allows? Thanks!

  34. phira*

    So I’ve got a weird/stressful situation:

    I’m an adjunct TA, and while I haven’t signed a contract for summer work, I had confirmed a position for a summer course with the faculty member teaching it (I’ve done this same course for the past three years and am in a senior TA role). Now, though, the university might cancel the summer program–we’re not sure yet–or otherwise alter it so that my position is eliminated. However, like I said, I haven’t signed anything, so this is more like, “I was verbally told I’d have a job but now I might not.”

    Would I be eligible? And if so, when would I have to apply? Right now, I’m employed, but I’m not sure how long my contract lasts (e.g. the end of the semester is always much later than my actual last day of work). I’m concerned because in my state (MA), you only have one week to file for unemployment.

  35. Forwhy*

    Anyone know what happens if you’re participating in a shared work program? Do you get the full 600? Does it get prorated at the same rate as your unemployment? Do you get nothing?

  36. Jennifer Juniper*

    Thank you, Alison, for posting this.

    Thank you, Donald Trump, for signing this into law.

    Thank you, Congress, for creating and passing this legislation.

  37. Mimi*

    Thanks for this Alison!

    What about people who are trying to balance work from home and homeschooling, and just not making it to a full week’s of work every week? Theoretically I could choose to spend every evening working, and basically work all waking minutes I’m not taking care of a child. But I’m choosing not to, because that’s not healthy. Does that mean I’m also choosing to not be eligible for unemployment? I feel like there are a lot of us parents who are not getting good guidance on what compensation we are eligible for, if any. (That is not meant to blame you. I suspect that many of the lawmakers haven’t thought this through, and many HR departments for companies haven’t considered the impact/options either. But I literally don’t know what to do. Do I use all my vacation time? Do I apply for unemployment for 5-15 hours a week, depending on what I need each week? Would I even qualify? I honestly feel like just giving up and losing the money because it might be less stressful than trying to figure out whether any policy applies to people like me, or worry that I’m accidentally committing fraud by applying for benefits.)

  38. Whenpigsfly*

    I have my own business with no employees other than myself. I work out of my house, so there isnt rent per se other than my home mortgage, but my income has completely ceased because of the shutdown. Am i eligible for some kind of unemployment besides a loan?

    1. Whenpigsfly*

      I suppose what I am confused about is how a small business loan would benefit me in the long run if I have to pay it off. I dont have overhead that I have to cover, but my income now is zero and when my business restarts its not like I will have double the income to pay off the debt. Unemployment payments would be a much better benefit for me personally. I am living off savings now.

      1. JKP*

        The PPP loans that are part of the CARE act have a provision where the loan will be forgiven for the amount used to pay payroll, office rent & utilities, so you wouldn’t end up having to pay that loan amount back. But in order for the loan to be forgiven, the business has to keep their employees on the payroll and not lay them off (thus not collect unemployment). For some small businesses (even with only 1 employee) that might be a better deal than unemployment. It’s something to look into and compare which would be better for your situation. But you should be able to claim unemployment even as a self-employed business and not take a loan.

        1. Whenpigsfly*

          Even when I the business owner am the sole employee? I do not have any employees besides myself to retain.

          1. JKP*

            If you go to the chamber of commerce link I supplied earlier on the page, it appears to cover sole proprietors:
            ” For Sole Proprietors, Independent Contractors, and Self-Employed Individuals:
            The sum of payments of any compensation to or income of a sole proprietor or independent contractor that is a wage, commission, income, net earnings from self-employment, or similar compensation and that is in an amount that is not more than $100,000 in one year, as pro-rated for the covered period.”

            As long as you don’t have more than 500 employees, even as a business with just one employee (you) you should still qualify.

            I talked to my bank today, and they think you’ll be able to start applying for this loan by Friday possibly. I would talk to one of your local state sba people or score people to get specific advice for your situation.

  39. Hmmm*

    I’m being paid my last paycheck for the next four weeks (100% reported tipped employee) with a cap that’s 40% of my average bi-weekly check (based on the year). So while I’m getting base plus reported tips for 40 hours, it’s less than I usually get. Do UIB apply here?

    Not being ungrateful, just asking if the stimulus covers this.

  40. Sydney*

    I have a question: my fiance works in the auto industry and makes $12 per hour plus commission. Since our state has a stay at home order but they are considered essential, so he’s still having to come into work and no customers are showing up. Needless to say, there’s little to no commission to be had and we’re worried about affording our bills. Does he have an recourse in terms of unemployment?

    1. Sarah*

      Hey Sydney, did you find out any information on this? Myself and my team are all base + commission and seeing drastic declines in our compensation during this time. Curious if you found anything out!

  41. Sally*

    I was just checking for my friend who is self-employed but now making much less than normal because clients have been dropping like flies. I found that self-employed people can’t even apply for unemployment yet in MA. Here’s what the notice says, “The Department of Unemployment Assistance is awaiting federal guidance regarding the CARES Act’s application requirements, business rules, eligibility requirements, exceptions, and technical requirements. Until that guidance is issued, benefits under the CARES Act are not yet available in Massachusetts and claimants may not apply for such benefits through UI Online at this time.” This is so scary! I’m already paying for my friend’s groceries, but I can’t afford to support both of us. I hope this guidance gets communicated quickly, so MA residents can start applying.

  42. Dolly Dagger*

    My son works retail and was laid off a week ago. he filed for UI, but was denied for not a long enough work history/part-time work. Does he need to appeal or ??? It’s WI if anyone can chime in.

    1. Amanda*

      I believe he should appeal since the expansion changes were put in place after his layoff, it sounds like.

  43. Red Light Specialist*

    Here’s an oddball question that doesn’t apply to many and may be beyond your scope, but I’d welcome input from any commenters (fact-based, please, not moral).

    I am self-employed in two industries, one of which is the sex/adult industry. Sex workers are one of the 5 explicitly excluded groups for this assistance, regardless of whether the work is legal or illegal. Does that mean I’m also excluded from making a claim for the other portion of my work, as a 1099 personal assistant? I can’t work at either job right now.

    Basically, am I excluded from all benefits because I *am a sex worker*, or eligible for the other work I do since it is not sex work? Does my overall identity override the actual nature of
    the other work? I file taxes for both, identifying then separately with their own expenses etc.

    My hunch (based on the strict wording of the application, link to an article in the reply highlighting the language) is that I’m completely ineligible because sex workers of all stripes are obviously considered a different category of humans at a base level, and therefore barred from any worker benefits.

    1. Whenpigsfly*

      There was an NPR segment on just this issue a few days ago. The answer was that there is no legal avenue for sex workers (in the US at least) but that there are some industry mutual aid societies that exist. Of course, absolutely everyone is in need of this aid so they are completely overrun. Also, a lot of sex workers are trying to go online as cam workers but there is obviously a lot of competition right now.

      1. Red Light Specialist*

        Thanks for the comment, I’ll look for that NPR segment. Many in my industry are in much more dire need, so I’m leaving industry aid for them. I wouldn’t be seeking government assistance for that part of my income, it’s so obviously excluded. But it would sure be nice to be treated like any other worker for my other job.

    2. Amanda*

      Ugh, that’s a really shitty exception, especially since there is a LOT of sex work that is not illegal and is taxed.

      I’m not an HR person, lawyer, or unemployment agency worker and I’m sorry I don’t have an answer. I do have two suggestions though.

      My instinct, as someone with an unfortunately extensive personal experience with safety net programs, is that you should apply for the non-sex work job you do. There may be ways a worker at the unemployment office can guide or help you that is not easily apparent. Don’t mention the ineligible job. You aren’t working at it and it’s ineligible, so it is irrelevant to the conversation.

      See if your community has a mutual aid society set up–either specific to sex work or the broader community. I was able to get some pro-bono legal advice via that avenue.

      1. Red Light Specialist*

        It is so obviously punitive, considering how much care went into the wording to be as broad as possible, and the nature of the unrelated exclusions. Illegal workers are hit with the double whammy – that’s one of the other listed exclusions that has the same potential of overriding any legal work – even though many many criminalized workers do pay taxes on their income. The IRS doesn’t much care where it comes from as long as you pay, but the consequences are extreme if you don’t.

        Many of my colleagues are in much more dire need, so I’m leaving industry resources for them. But I may seek out professional advice or just try the application – even if it doesn’t benefit me, I can at least share the info in my community so others know whether it’s worth trying. Thanks for the sympathy and suggestions!

    3. ...*

      I was going to ask how they knew you were a sex worker but yeah if you’re delcaring it on your taxes then I guess they’d know. I’m confused though…are you declaring an illegal job on your taxes or are you living somewhere that is legal? I assume you are USA since you stated 1099. I don’t think it should automatically exclude you from collecting UI on the 1099 job.

      1. Red Light Specialist*

        I’d rather not discuss the specific nature of my work, but the issue crosses a wide spectrum – porn and legal brothels (Nevada) are the easiest to quantify for the purpose of the discussion.

      2. Natalie*

        No comment on how Red Light Specialist handles it, but a lot of sex workers list their business as entertainer, model, or similar. The IRS really doesn’t pry much into the business itself.

    4. Red Light Specialist*

      After a bit more looking at this (and calming down a bit), I realized the specific application I’m looking at is about disaster relief loans for small businesses as opposed to unemployment benefits, but frankly, the same question applies – am I reading that right, is this about sex workers being such intrinsically different kinds of people that even non-adult businesses owned by people who do adult work are deemed ineligible?

      1. Red Light Specialist*

        And after ANOTHER another look, I’m realizing that the Applicant is an Entity – so the business rather than the individual, so it does only apply to adult businesses. And feeling rather silly to have opened the discussion on this thread, so no more responses needed!

  44. IWantToPetAllTheDogs*

    I apologize if this has been previously answered, but I haven’t found a situation quite like mine. I voluntarily quit my job at the end of February in DC to relocate for my spouse’s new job in New Mexico. In the two weeks that we packed up our household goods and drove across the country, everything had literally blown up, including my job prospects (higher education staff). At the present time, New Mexico only offers “trailing spouse” benefits to those who are spouses of active-duty military stationed in the state. All non-essential businesses and schools are closed. I’ve never earned any money in NM, and I’m not sure what state/district I would begin to file a claim because I worked in DC, owned a condo in Virginia, and I’ve rented in New Mexico less than a month. Is this just one of those slip through the crack scenarios where no one Act can conceivably cover every situation?

    Alison, thank you for all you do to keep us apprised of unfolding events. I frequently refer my international colleagues to your site for all the great content and scripts and they love it!

  45. Hedgingmybetsy*

    I’m in Florida, age 62, and work in a retail position. The CDC guidelines suggest that older people isolate or at the least, stay home when you can. If my employer continues to keep the business open, how would that affect my eligibility for UI if I were to resign? I’m exempt, not sure if that would matter.
    I read the CARES act but it didn’t specifically address my question.
    And thanks for this site!

  46. Raindancer*

    I may be one of those who don’t qualify, but I”m not sure. I’m newly self-employed and have not filed a tax return for this new business (art). I can’t find anything stating that you don’t have to submit returns to apply for relief/unemployment payments. All of my events – art fairs and similar events – have all been canceled through the end of May. I don’t know what I’m going to do. I’ll probably have to borrow from my parents, which is mortifying.

  47. NoRealNameHere*

    My spouse was just partially furloughed from their non-profit. We know that they can apply for unemployment, but people at their job mentioned there might be something where they can “donate” their furloughed salary and it might turn out better, tax-wise. Anyone know anything about this and have a reliable source I can link to?

  48. Princesa Zelda*

    I know I’m super late to the thread, but: does anybody know if you can get partial UI if you have multiple part time jobs and one of them went to a zero-hour schedule? I usually work two jobs; right now I’m on admin leave from one and zero-hour on the other, so I have 20 hours of income coming in instead of ~40-50. I tried to just go ahead and file with Arizona DES, but my phone and the website don’t like each other and the site doesn’t seem equipped to handle the idea of simultaneous employment. Ordinarily I’d use a computer at the library but that’s… not an option, at the moment.

  49. Beth*

    Allison I was unemployed on Feb 5 , just before all hell broke loose. Anyone knows it takes time for good job prospects to come along. As of 3/15, I had two decent job possibilities; I had just completed a phone interview for employer 1 and had been invited for an an person interview for the week of 3/23 , the second decided to hire in house. Job 1 interview was ultimately canceled due to corona virus closures in my state, and I have to guess that also impacted company two choice to hire within. Will I be eligible for the extra money? Is anyone else here in this situation?

  50. Arghhh*

    My husband applied for unemployment when nonessential businesses were closed 3/17, and received his denial letter on Monday. We appealed but I’m still freaking out that we’re not going to qualify! Anybody else in this boat? We are in PA.

  51. Flustered*

    On the DOL’s coronavirus page, it says under “unemployment insurance flexibilities” that there is a new provision to receive unemployment if “an individual leaves employment due to the risk of exposure.” I wonder if this would apply to me. My employer is refusing to let me telework, and is only offering unpaid leave to me from now on. I don’t feel safe going into work because CDC social distancing guidelines are not being abided by. I’m unsure if this means the individual needs to resign from their job, or if they could claim unemployment if their employer will hold their job for them. Thoughts?

  52. College kid*

    Graduating in May from college but no confirmed job offer nor expecting any in near future, unfortunately. Did have full time paid internship last summer but worked sporadically during the school year; 10-15 hours max at various jobs such as for census and at local bar ( as bar back not just as a customer!) Based on being a new entrant to job market will not qualify for UI, correct?

  53. Single mama relying on supplementary income*

    What if I still have my primary employment, but I lost my part-time supplementary job due to Civid-Related closing. Can I apply for the loss of income on my second job?

  54. Cake Lady*

    if you are on social security disability and work 8 hours a month on the books are you eligible for unemployment?

  55. Landon Lee*

    I tried to file on the Colorado unemployment website. It asked if I made 2500 USD last year in Colorado. I did not work in America last year. I have been working on foreign projects oversees for 4 years and moved back to the USA 2 months ago and quickly got a job. I worked that job for 5 weeks before the company shut down (resort). Am I eligible for the CARES act benefits and if so where should I file?

    1. Officecat*

      You might have to wait until Colorado updates it’s system for the new benefits. I’m in Colorado, already on unemployment and waiting for an extension so I have been checking the website daily for new information. Nothing new yet. you may be eligible, so keep checking back.

  56. melissa severn*

    Hello. I have been on unemployment since October and my benefits run out in a few weeks. I can’t get ahold of the unemployment office in Ohio. Will I still get my usual amount of money when my benefits expire plus the $600 for the 13 weeks the government said people will get or just the $600.00? Do I need to refile? The Ohio website says currently no state or federal extended benefits are available. I’m confused and getting very worried. Can someone please help me???

  57. Asking for a friend*

    I really am asking for a friend on this, so I don’t have all the details.
    She has been working several jobs, including self-employed house cleaner and fill-in bartender. Her main job, though, was working as a bikini dancer at a pasties bar. Like many such places, the employees were almost all illegally classified as independent contractors, working only for tips only (no tip outs at least).

    The bar had no kitchen, so it is completely closed. She worked there in all of 2018, 2019 and 2020 up to now. The bartender who was in charge of scheduling did maintain detailed records of who worked which days. I do not know if my friend paid self-employment tax on that income. She would have filed taxes on her house cleaning income though.

    What would she need to do in order to file for unemployment for that job? Does it matter that she is still self-employed as a house cleaner too (though a large part of her income is gone now)? Does she need to file any back self-employment taxes, and if so, how much?

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