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Maine initial unemployment claims decline for week ending Nov. 28

Claim numbers have ping-ponged for the last few weeks.
Credit: Getty Images

The Maine Department of Labor reports there were about 1,900 initial claims for unemployment and 700 initial claims filed for federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) for the week ending November 28.

This is a decrease of 320 applicants from the previous week. 

When you include people reopening their unemployment claims the number rises to approximately 2,300 claimants. 

About 11,600 weekly certifications, or continued claims, were filed last week, with another 15,400 weekly certifications filed under PUA. 

In addition, about 12,700 weekly certifications were filed for the federal Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program and 100 weekly certifications were filed for the state Extended Benefits program. 

Claims data can be found here: https://www.maine.gov/labor/cwri/ui.html

Credit: MDOL

Weekly certifications must be filed by claimants every week in order to continue to receive unemployment benefits.

The MDOL warns that the federal CARES Act unemployment programs (Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation) are set to expire on December 26, unless Congress passes a pandemic relief bill. 

RELATED: Senators Collins, King among group to reveal $908 billion pandemic relief package

The MDOL continues its battle against fraud. 

During the week ending November 28, the Department canceled 313 initial claims and 7 weekly certifications that were determined to be fraudulent.

The Department warns they would never send a password reset email that wasn't requested by the individual. If someone did not request a reset and receives one of these emails, they should immediately delete the email and not respond. If they receive an email requesting they look at the recent activity in their account, they should not click on any links in the email, and instead, go straight to their account.

The MDOL suggests claimants follow these guidelines to protect themselves:

  • Before filing their next weekly certification, they should go to Benefits Maintenance > Payment Options to verify their current payment information and update as needed.
  • Click on the link in Benefits Maintenance to verify their email address. This will generate an email with instructions on how to complete the process.
  • After verifying their email, the Department recommends changing their password to one that is not being used in any other online system. They will need to verify their email account before creating a new password by hitting forgot password on the log-in page. This will also generate an email within which they will need to click on a link. Passwords should not be shared with anyone.
  • Unsolicited emails about resetting passwords should be immediately deleted.
  • If unemployment benefit payments for prior weeks filed appear to have been redirected to a bank account that is not theirs, they should contact the Department. 

RELATED: US jobless claims remain high at 712,000 as coronavirus escalates

The week ending April 4, 2020, had the highest numbers with 30,889 Mainers filing for unemployment.

Between March 15 and November 28, the Maine Department of Labor has paid out over $1.68 billion in federal and state unemployment benefits.

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