Texas (TX) Unemployment and TWC Enhanced Coronavirus Benefits – 600 FPUC, 13 week PUA extension and Numbers to Call

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) manages the states’ unemployment compensation program. Due to the recent surge in claims from the Coronavirus induced recession the TWC is experiencing an exceptionally high volume of customers and so has limited access in certain cases. Please be patient if you cannot file a claim – further details and contact numbers below.

CARES Act Unemployment Compensation Expansion for COVID-19 Relief

The outbreak of COVID-19 has caused unprecedented changes to the lives of individuals all across Texas and across the globe. Since March 14, the Texas Workforce commission helped over 1 million Texans file unemployment claims which is equivalent to around 75 weeks of claims in a month’s time.

The Governor declared the COVID-19 Pandemic a disaster March 13, 2020; therefore, the TWC can backdate a claim to the prior Sunday which is March 8, 2020 if an individual was unemployed and has been trying to file but has not yet been successful. If the individual became unemployed subsequent to March 13, 2020 and has been attempting file but not yet successful then their claim will be effective the Sunday prior to the date they were separated from work.


The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) is working with federal, state and local government officials and agencies to help manage the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance provides up to 39 weeks of unemployment benefits for persons impacted by COVID-19 and covers individuals who are self-employed, who otherwise would not qualify for regular unemployment compensation, or who have exhausted state benefits.

Additionally, TWC has begun rolling out the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), adding an additional $600 per week for claimants. Individuals receiving Unemployment Insurance (UI) or federal extended benefits qualify for the additional $600. [From April 13, 2020]

If you have already applied for traditional UI benefits, you do not need to take any further action to quality for PUA. Do not apply for benefits again. TWC will review eligibility for PUA for all existing applicants automatically and notify claimants by mail or electronic correspondence of their eligibility.

Independent contractor, self-employed or 1099 workers have until December 26, 2020 to provide their 2019 Internal Revenue Service Form 1040 and Schedule C, F, or SE.

Under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act dated March 27, 2020, individuals who are self-employed, seeking part-time employment, or who otherwise would not qualify for regular Unemployment Compensation (UC) or Extended Benefits (EB) under state or federal law or Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) under section 2107 may be eligible for assistance under PUA. Coverage may also include individuals who have exhausted their benefits under regular UC or EB claims under state or federal law, or PEUC.

Filing a Claim

Individuals affected by COVID-19 can apply for PUA benefits online through Unemployment Benefit Services 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or by calling a TWC Tele-Center any day between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. at 800-939-6631.When applying, individuals affected by the pandemic should indicate that as the reason they lost their job.

What do I do if I was previously denied benefits due to my base period?

You may reapply. Unemployment benefit eligibility is based on past wages, job separation and ongoing eligibility requirements. Prior to April 5, past wages are calculated on a base period of October 2018-September 2019. However, starting on April 5, 2020, the base period changes to January 2019-December 2019. If you were previously denied unemployment benefits due to monetary ineligibility and worked during the January 2019-December 2019 base period, TWC encourages you to visit the unemployment benefit services portal on April 5 to reapply online.

How long does it take to receive benefits?

On average, it takes about 21 days for a person to receive benefits from the time they apply and qualify. Some people receive benefits sooner and for some it might take a little more time.

Which numbers can I call to get more information or help with Texas UI

To speak with a customer service representative, call an unemployment benefits Tele-Center @ 800-939-6631. Because of the overwhelming number of calls the TWC is receiving, they have extended Tele-Center hours and are now Sunday – Saturday, 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Central Time. See more contact information here.

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9 thoughts on “Texas (TX) Unemployment and TWC Enhanced Coronavirus Benefits – 600 FPUC, 13 week PUA extension and Numbers to Call

  1. How to get retroactive unemployment. I’ve been unemployed since March 15, but because I couldn’t get through to file a claim until recently. They set my start week June 1st. But it should of started April 1st

  2. I started receiving my unemployment and PUA but didn’t get any back pay. Is Texas still giving back pay? I was out of work since March 17th but couldn’t get through to apply until May. Do I even qualify for back pay?

  3. Yes I applied for benfits I got denied cause I dont have no wages recorded I get paid cash in self employed why dony I quilfly

  4. I had already exhausted my benefits for the year and just started a new job. After two weeks I was laid off due to the pandemic. I filed a claim and it said I was Approved to receive benefits. When looking at my claim status, it said “Benefits Remaining: $0”. I thought that was odd, seeing as how I was approved, but chalked it up to TWC upgrading their systems to handle to traffic and call volume increase. When it was my day to make a payment request, it became even more confusing- it said again I have no benefits, but then took me to the screen of questions to make the payment request. I successfully made the payment request, but the next day I got something in my inbox that made absolutely NO SENSE about how my total payment amount was $0. One week said the payment amount was “**$469”, the 2nd week said my benefit amount was $375, but at the bottom it says: “Total payment: 0$”
    Anyone else have this problem?

    1. Yes, Igot the letter that showed I have exhausted my benefits and I can’t get through to ask someone i am very upset!

    2. Same for me they haven’t gotten to the exhausted claims still it’s been 6 weeks of no payment but I keep requesting payment and haven’t heard nothing can’t get thru the lines so I checked my email and tec sent out a email saying may 9 they are sending out letters to exhausted claims members and will go from there so start looking for mail

  5. I haven’t received anything from Texas Workforce Commission yet, I got through 1 time with receiving any help with my case, I don’t even think the call centers are quilified to help those with unusual cases. This is extremely frustrating, to say the least. You would think they would try to handle the cases that were already on file. SMH.

  6. Why should I care about this cause there is alot of people that is living on the streets and they are living off of SSI and SSDI and the have already received there Stimulus Payment and here I am and I hand not yet seen mine at all I already sent a message to the IRS and no response back oh well I guess all they want to do is take and give to the ones that want to put the NEEDLE in there arm or SUCK ON THE GLASS PIPE and DO THERE LIL CRACK as they do. I am married and we do not hardly have any food I need to stay home I have EPYLYPSY and COPD and my wife stays here with me saying andday out and we will be at risk atlosing our place due to the IRS REPEAT I AM ON SSI

    1. This is very accusatory and angry. just because you re struggling in a different way does not make you more important. People who did their taxes in 2019 and don’t have any offsets were served first look in the mirror buddy!!! This is your fault!

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