Alabama Ready: Coronavirus
There is great news for those who are still looking for work. If current unemployment benefits are exhausted and individuals still remain unemployed, more funding is coming. As of July 5, the Extended Benefits are available for eligible unemployed Alabamians.
In 2008 during the Great Recession, Alabama was one of the states initially offered the Extended Benefits (EB) program as a federal project. This was due to the state’s insured unemployment rate being more than 5.9 percent.
According to the Department of Labor, “Claimants must not be eligible for unemployment compensation benefits in another state or Canada. Claimants must have no disqualifications, have qualifying wages, and must have at least one week in the benefit year that begins in an EB eligibility period.”
Indication shows that once the extra $600 distribution from the federal government is discontinued, the Extended Benefits program will pay the standard unemployment benefit amount for Alabama. This total is $275 per week.
Extended Benefits Qualifications
Unfortunately, everyone will not qualify for the Extended Benefits. The Alabama Department of Labor will notify those who are eligible to receive Extended Benefits. All eligible claimants will be contacted via mail and the online UI Claims Tracker. Application for these benefits will not be necessary. In addition, it is advised that unemployed individuals continue to file weekly certifications, per the department guidelines.
The Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program was designed to be a 13-week extension of normal unemployment paid by the federal government. If individuals are not working through no fault of their own, there should be no issues receiving the EB funds. However, individuals must be able to and available for work. Since the submission of required work search contact has temporally been waived due to COVID-19 restrictions, claimants are advised to continue to look for work where possible.
A detailed information sheet on who can received Extended Benefits can be accessed at https://wdr.doleta.gov/directives/attach/UIPL/UIPL_24-20.pdf.