WASHINGTON, D.C., USA — The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act ( CARES Act) was enacted on March 27 in response to the coronavirus pandemic.
Within this Act, Section 2104 provides guidance to states regarding eligibility for certain individuals to receive additional unemployment compensation under Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC).
The U.S. Department of Labor announced the publication of Unemployment Insurance Guidance Letter 15-20 (UIPL) which includes the guidelines to states for administering an additional $600 weekly payment to eligible individuals who are receiving other benefits.
This program allows an additional $600 per week to individuals who are collecting regular unemployment compensation including compensation from the following:
- Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE);
- Unemployment Compensation for Ex-Servicemembers (UCX);
- Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) ;
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA);
- Extended Benefits (EB); ShortTime Compensation (STC);
- Trade Readjustment Allowances (TRA);
- Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA);
- Self-Employment Assistance (SEA) program.
Benefit payments under FPUC may begin as soon as the week after an agreement between the department and states has been signed. All states have signed agreements with the department as of March 28, 2020.
Retroactive payments will be received back to the eligibility date or the date the agreement was signed, whichever came later.
The CARES Act specifies that FPUC benefit payments will end after payments for the last week of unemployment before July 31, 2020.
This additional weekly compensation, included in the CARES Act will provide much-needed support to American workers and their families due to the challenges inflicted by the coronavirus pandemic.
In a press release, Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia said, “The Department will continue to provide guidance and support to the States so they can administer the important new benefits under the CARES Act while guarding against fraud and abuse in their Unemployment Insurance systems.”
FPUC benefit payments are fully federally-funded and benefits may begin as soon as the week after the signed agreement between the departments and states is completed.
The press release also indicates that "the UIPL also includes guidance to states about protecting unemployment insurance program integrity, as the provisions in the CARES Act operate in tandem with the fundamental eligibility requirements of the Federal-State UI program. The department is actively working with states receiving funding under the Act to provide unemployment insurance benefits only to those who are entitled to such benefits."
For more information about UIPLs or previous guidance, click here.
At NEWS CENTER Maine, we're focusing our news coverage on the facts and not the fear around the illness. To see our full coverage, visit our coronavirus section, here: Coronavirus Coverage