2013 Unemployment Benefits Extension Approved

[2013 Unemployment Benefits Extension – January 2013 update] Congress and the Obama administration have reached an agreement that will extend federal unemployment insurance benefits (Emergency Unemployment Compensation) into 2013 following the latest round of fiscal cliff negotiations. This means newly unemployed and those with time left on their unemployment benefits will continue to receive aid in 2013.

However the current deal legislation only extends the deadline for receiving benefits to December 28th 2013 and does not expand the UI benefit duration (detailed in previous updates below), meaning those who have already exceeded the maximum allowable benefits (up to 73 weeks in some states) will NOT be eligible to receive additional benefits.

If you are already receiving benefits no further action should be required on your part. For new applicants or those looking for alternative options check with your state unemployment agency/commission which manages both the federal and state unemployment benefits.

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One of the topics that gets a lot of interest on this site is around unemployment benefits and particularly their extension into 2012 and 2013. Federal benefits under the Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) program were extended earlier this year until December 2012, albeit for a reduced duration and based on a states unemployment rate. However for 2013 there is currently no legislation in place to extend benefits for newly unemployed workers past the state standard 26 week limit. Check your state’s employment department or agency website for state specific unemployment benefit rules and regulations.

The last payable ending date for all federal extensions is December 29, 2012. Unless Congress changes the law, no further federal extension benefits (Tiers 1 – 4) can be paid for any weeks spent unemployed after this date even if someone may have a balance remaining on a federal extension claim. More than five million Americans have been unemployed for longer than six months, and more than two million will lose access to federal unemployment insurance if the program lapses in December. In fact a number of unemployed people have already started receiving notices of their federal unemployment benefits extension termination.

With the current focus on the fiscal cliff, Congress and the re-elected Obama administration have not spent much time on any new 2013 unemployment extension legislation. Which is worrying because a recent Economic Policy Institute study estimated that a failure to extend the federal EUC benefits would significantly hamper economic growth and cost the economy the equivalent of  400,000 jobs. In fact the study also found that a 2013 unemployment extension would provide a bigger boost to economic growth and create more jobs than an extension of the high-income Bush tax rates.

[Latest Update as of 12-23-2012] Despite a break down in recent fiscal cliff negotiations, President Obama is pushing for further extensions (14 weeks is the number being rumored) in unemployment benefits. The cost of even this relatively minor extension will in the billions of dollars, which is causing Republicans to balk at even more government spending on entitlements. Still, there is hope that Congress can reach an interim deal to prevent millions of Americans losing their benefits in the new year.
Assuming Congress can reach some sort of agreement on UI benefits, they can back date checks so that you still get the money (there may be a delay). However if they cannot reach a deal, the benefits will stop on Dec 29, and you will have to contact your state unemployment office for options. Also, please avoid scam email/sites that promise to get you benefits, if you give them a whole lot of personal and financial information. No one, other than your state or federal government can provide unemployment benefits. Anyone that promises otherwise is just trying to steal your money.

22 thoughts on “2013 Unemployment Benefits Extension Approved

  1. Gina

    Have you seen what they have done in North Carolina? Benefits now end after 20 weeks and the state government also reduced the maximum amount of money that unemployed people can get each week from $535 to $350. It’s this change that cuts off North Carolina from the federal unemployment funds: states that change the average weekly benefit can’t get this money.

    About 70,000 North Carolinians have already felt the impact of the change, effective July 1, and an estimated 100,000 more are expected to face cuts in the next few months.

  2. At Will

    The trouble in California is that it is an at will state. Employers just use the performance excuse to try to get more, then fire you. Call centers sometimes have accounts that set goals that the employees can’t reach, and as if that wasn’t enough, employers have gotten more choosy. In my town of Clovis, an inside office job requires that you have a car (valid CA drivers license) I don’t live in the town of Reedley, give me a chance for mercys sake. Jobs should not be casually firing people for bogus reasons, when they want to work. I believe this competetion for jobs has created the lack of respect for hard workers. It used to be that you had to have big misconduct, like willful sexual harassment ( I don’t mean the casual unknowing one that one may be guilty of by just trying to be funny), or trying to kill your boss, or stealing, or gross laziness for firing, now they are free to even set you up to fail by setting standards you are unable to meet. Employers want a masters too, and several years of experience on top of it, to boot. I know it started with outsourcing, but that does not tell the whole story.

  3. Carolyn Kliever

    In June of this year the business that I had been working for closed their doors. Even though I have looked and looked for jobs and applied to almost everything available I have had no luck. I hear a lot of “over qualified” aka old but no offers and only one interview, but a lot of you meet the job criteria. Recently I received the infamous letter saying that I do not even qualify for EUC, of course 3 weeks before my regular unemployment ends. It was hard enough to try and live on 1/2 of what I was making to nothing and no matter who I have talked to all I have heard is “sorry”. I have worked continuously for 30 plus years only to find out that that was only good for 6 months worth of unemployment benefits. I can only hope that the government makes the decision to extend the EUC so that there will not be a huge onset of homeless.

  4. J

    I have been unemployed almost a year I never planned to be laid off. I’ve done over 50+ applications and one call and one letter, no interviews. Am I worried hell yeah I’m worried. I live 20 miles out of town. I could get my vehicle repoed how can I find a job if I can’t get to town or get food or take my child to school. How do I pay my bills, lights ect if I have no money. This is the first time I’ve ever received unemployment and I pray I find a job and never have to use it again. I have one more check coming then I have no money. My worthless ex even stop paying childsupport and he owes $48,000 and they continue to let him walk. So I hope they extend the funds. Most of my present apps close after the first, so I hope I get hired by the end of Jan. things are rough and I’m afraid it’s going to get worse if we don’t stand together.

    1. Andy (Author)

      J – Your situation is dire and I hope you find something soon. I would also check with your state unemployment office if you are entitled to any other benefits.

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  7. PMC

    I am one of those unable to find employment and my extension runs out on 12-29-12. Is there ANY chance that new legislation can pass for a 2013 extension? If so, when could that realistically happen and how long would we go without checks in between?

    1. Andy (Author)

      Assuming Congress can reach some sort of agreement on UI benefits, they can back date checks so that you get the money. Unfortunately if they cannot reach a deal, the benefits will stop on Dec 29, and you will have to contact your state unemployment office for options. Also, please avoid scam email/sites that promise to get you benefits (if you give them a whole lot of personal information). No one, other than your state or federal government can provide unemployment benefits.

  8. Tammy

    They really need to pass the unemployment extension without this so many people will go without food. So sad to see so many people with worried looks on their face wondering how they will provide for their family. I hope and pray Congress can reach a fair solution soon.

    1. Andy (Author)

      There could be some hope that unemployment extensions for at least a few weeks/months may actually come to pass in 2013. President Obama in his latest fiscal cliff negotiations is pushing for further extensions (14 weeks is the number being rumored). So don’t lose hope.

        1. Bud

          No…it would not extend the maximum number of weeks (which depends on what state you live in). But if you still have eligible weeks you benefit from the extension.

  9. Jaret

    They really need to pass this unemploymemt extension. I have emailed and talked to my friends for work. I get the run around it sucks, and I even have a degree that I still have to make payments on trying to better myself and still no luck. I could really use the help right now with this unemploymemt extion. I don’t understand what the big deal is why people get so mad an think we sit on are asses and collect money. I really hope the rich come down to are levels and see things. Instead of sit on there big pile of money and don’t understand shit because they have everything.

  10. dan

    it will come in 2012 its just when.spred the welth remember. obama said.n hopefully were not at war!!!!! in syria//egypt.because this will never go away.from the u,s,a.and gess.. what its coming.in 2013, just were iran.maybe…..repent and ask jesus for your help.he will.

  11. Goodness Gracious

    For those of you who has this larger than life attitude because joblessness hasn’t kicked your door down yet, and keep referring to the “lazy person” on the “couch.” Let’s see what you think after that lazy persons’ survival mode kicks in because they can’t take it no more to look at their 2 year old who haven’t eaten in 2 days because the unemployed worker is torn between buying meds or food, gasoline or pay the light bill (care taker for their 85 year old mother on machines that require electricity) and let’s see if you still think they are lazy while they climb the walls of your house to break in to steal all of the food you have in your frig. Let’s see if they are still lazy if they see you walking and rob you after being tired of sending out thousands of resumes only to receive one interview only to compete with 500 other “more qualified applicants” for that ONE job so they walk off feeling inadequate (despite the fact that they may have worked their asses off for that Master’s degree). So, now they still don’t have a job so go back to the drawing board we now call a computer to shuffle through all of the false advertisements, bait and switch tactics promoted by school ads, who are just about ready to knock you down and steal your purse or wallet so that they can continue their job search being able to buy the high priced gas to do so. Now, go ahead and times that by a million unemployed job searchers who all at one time don’t have ANY money coming in who are exhausted, broke, fed up, turned to the bottle, hungry, tired of short stringing it and are now on the streets and have given up and has simply said fuck it and start to rob and steal. I’m talking folks who have never been in trouble with the law. Because survival mode will kick in. Trust me on that one. Let’s see how you feel when you get “jacked” for your loot or your diamond get snatched because to them all of that bling starts to look like a decent meal, cloths, money for bills and a way to save their house. You see these are people who haven’t gotten quite use to their new found poverty. This is everybody’s problem. Everyone should get together on this and try to solve it together (write proposals for on-the-job-training programs, send applications for patents, new ideas, new products, home based jobs for example resume writing businesses, restructure how hiring companies hire). This is just off the top of my head. Presidents are optimistic, but realistically, create jobs for everybody, come on… really. Any of them will say what ever they think we want to hear to get elected or re-elected. “We are the People” we should start acting like it. Just some information for some of the ill informed. We wanted to work. We demonstrated that fact by having a job in the first place. Unemployment don’t just give you a check if you quit or are lazy. They assess first the circumstances. It has to be determined that you are now without a job for “NO FAULT OF YOUR OWN” to even receive a check. Picture this if you are still puzzled about the tragedy that would be inevitable if the jobless benefits are not extended…people are going to eat. Period. People are going to jail trying to make that happen. They will go to the already overcrowded jails, government of course, will slap your ass with the bill, that’s if you haven’t been let go or laid off yet your damn self by then. Robberies, looting, assaults, check bouncing will happen and that is just getting started. The government will call on a militia, lock down the neighborhoods, and they will be safe because him and his family can just conveniently go to his underground bunker. Wake up, and be realistic and pass the damn law to give earned money to workers. (by the way, it is a JOB to look for a job and unemployment makes you be prepared to report all job searches ramdomly or you’ll lose those benefits) As, jobless Americans, (yes we are proud Americans) we got our shit together and we deserve to get help after all who has for years participated in contributing to the thousands of lifetime welfare recipients who we KNOW, some of them, not all, sat on the “Big Fat Couch.” Or even worst, paying for all, some of which could be some of your family members who have gone to jail. Who do you think paid for that shit. The recently unemployed workers that who. Now, we need help to GET BACK ON OUR FEET, not a hand out. There is a difference. I don’t think you know who you are referring to when you say lazy. I’ll help you by telling you: firemen, social workers, construction workers, case workers, software engineers, police officers, engineers, CEO’s, does that help? God help and bless America.

    1. trushanda

      amen!! i am a lpn and i have been catching hell trying to find a job!!

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  13. Janet Curran

    I am concern about the Fiscal Cliff. The unemployment benefits and raising taxes

    1. Andy (Author)

      As you well should be. Unemployed folks are going to be hit the hardest if taxes rise and/or government spending programs are cut back. Hopefully Congress can reach a fair and long-term beneficial solution.


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