New York state, the hardest hit by the Coronavirus/COVID crisis has also seen one of the largest spikes in unemployment and subsequent claims under new provisions enacted under the CARES Act. While the NY Department of Labor (DOL), the state agency that manages unemployment insurance programs and payouts, has started paying the $600 FPUC payment, it is still well behind in processing claims and making retroactive payments. This is a known issue as their systems and call centers are having several technical glitches and struggling to handle the volume of claims. However the good news, per the comments below and across this site (see more UI resources), is that unemployed claimants are now getting the $600 payments on a more regular basis. But it is also clear from the comments below and social media that many, especially those applying for PUA benefits, are still waiting or unable to get clarity around gaps or delays in getting their expected benefits
CARES Act Unemployment Compensation Enhancements for Coronavirus / COVID-19 Relief
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, also known as the CARES Act, signed into law on March 27, 2020 expands Reemployment Assistance benefits. Benefits will be paid from the date they became eligible under the CARES Act. Programs included in the CARES Act are:
- Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) – provides an additional $600 per week to any eligible individual until 7/31/2020. The $600 would be paid the first week of your unemployment claim period but no earlier than 4/5/20.
- Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) – provides up to 39 weeks of benefits per week to those not ordinarily eligible for Reemployment Assistance. This includes individuals who are self-employed or contract employees. The additional $600 FPUC per week will be automatically added to all regular UI and PUA benefits.
- Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) – allows for an additional 13 weeks of benefits added to the end of regular unemployment insurance benefits. This means claimants may collect unemployment benefits for a longer period of time than under normal circumstances. Claimants will need to apply for PEUC benefits once the balance of their current claim is exhausted. Those who have already exhausted their benefits or have a UI claim that expired after July 1, 2019, will also be able to apply.
How To File
Sign in or create a NY.gov ID account and follow the instructions to file a claim. If you can’t apply online, you can call the TCC at 1-888-209-8124.
If you have never filed a claim for benefits in New York State, you must create a PIN. This is a four-digit number that you must keep confidential. This PIN will be used to access the system to certify for weekly benefits and update your account.
Ready? Make sure you have with you:
- Your Social Security number
- Your driver license or Motor Vehicle ID card number (if you have either one)
- Your complete mailing address and zip code
- A phone number where we can reach you from 8 am – 5 pm, Monday –Friday
- Your Alien Registration card number (if you are not a U.S. Citizen and have a card)
- Names and addresses of all your employers for the last 18 months, including those in other states
- Employer Registration number or Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) of your most recent employer (FEIN is on your W-2 forms)
- Your copies of forms SF8 and SF50, if you were a federal employee
- Your most recent separation form (DD 214), for military service
You can file a claim without all of these documents. However, missing information can delay your first payment.
Certify for Weekly Benefits
Once you have filed a claim for benefits, you must also claim weekly benefits for each week you are unemployed and meet the eligibility requirements. This is also called “certifying for benefits.” You can start certifying as soon as you receive a notification from the DOL. During this process, you are confirming that you were unemployed for all or part of the past week and that you met all other conditions of receiving benefits. You may certify online or by telephone.
You will need to certify your benefits every single week, or you will lose them. This means that you need to log into your account and verify that you are still eligible for the benefits each week. You can do so here, or by calling NYC call center numbers.
Issues with UI benefits
Missing Payments – If you are entitled to UI benefits, all benefits will be backdated to the day you were out of work.
Pending Claims: If you recently filed a new claim and everything is in order, you should generally receive your first payment about 2-4 weeks after you apply for benefits. It takes 2-3 business days for a payment to appear in your bank account once it has been released from our system. If you are experiencing issues with your account and claim get help online or call 1-800-833-3000.
Additional Resources and Information
- How to Navigate NYC Unemployment Benefits in the Coronavirus Crisis
- Partial Unemployment Benefits if You Go Back to Work
- See the Top 16 Most Frequently Asked Questions for NYC claimants
The NY DOL is currently experiencing high call volumes, so check their website. Also while the NY DOL site is a great place to get program information, their social media sites (e.g twitter) seem to have the most up to date information.
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