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Updates on Unemployment Benefits in the Federal Stimulus Package

3.27.2020

Updates on Unemployment Benefits in the Federal Stimulus Package
By Dale Kroop

Hello business owners and workers, we are trying to organize important economic stimulus information by category so that you can understand it based on your direct need.

Here are the following key takeaways related to unemployment compensation. I included the main issues.

1. Supplemental Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation. Through July 31, 2020, the federal government would provide a temporary Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) of $600 a week for any worker eligible for state or federal unemployment compensation (UC) benefits. The FPUC would be paid in addition to and at the same time (but not necessarily in the same check) as regular state or federal UC benefits.

2. 13 Weeks of Emergency Unemployment Compensation will be Available in All States for Workers who Exhaust Regular Benefits. All states would be eligible to provide an additional 13 weeks of unemployment benefits to workers who need beyond what is provided for in state and federal law.

3. GIG Economy:
States would be permitted to expand eligibility to provide unemployment compensation to workers who are not normally eligible for benefits, so long as their unemployment was connected to the COVD-19 pandemic, as determined by the state and the Department of Labor. Expanded eligibility would provide benefits to self-employed individuals, independent contractors, “gig economy” employees, and individuals who were unable to start a new job or contract due to the pandemic individuals would apply for these temporary new federal benefits at the CT. UC office.

All PUA recipients would be eligible for the $600 a week federal supplement. They would also receive a base benefit calculated according to state benefit formulas and using recent information about their wages, but no lower than half the state’s minimum regular UC payment

4. Tipped workers who qualify for UC will all receive the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, an additional $600 a week payment, on top of their state UC payment like any other worker receiving UC benefits.

5. Will the UC enhancements in the CARES Act make workers whole financially? Nationally, state UC benefits replace about 40 percent of wages for workers. Under the CARES Act, until July 31, 2020, an average worker who received a state UC benefit and the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation would have 100 percent of their wages replaced, but replacement rates would vary by state and worker.

6. When do the temporary emergency benefit increases end?
The CARES Act terminates the $600 a week FPUC supplement on July 31, 2020, and other provisions on December 31, 2020.

7. Can workers on UC receive health insurance benefits from their prior employer? Workers receiving UC are eligible to stay on employer-sponsored insurance through COBRA but will no longer receive employer contributions for the premium. Unlike the House bill, the Senate bill did not provide a subsidy to help workers. Workers who lost their job and were previously covered by employer-sponsored insurance are eligible for a special enrollment period in the ACA marketplace for coverage and may be eligible for advanced premium tax credits and cost-sharing subsidies.

 
Dale Kroop, Director
Hamden Department of Economic and Neighborhood Development
2750 Dixwell Avenue,
Hamden, CT 06518
203 287-7033
Dkroop@hamden.com


3/27/2020
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