Additional weeks of unemployment benefits available in Ohio

Staff Report

COLUMBUS, OHIO – Up to 20 weeks of Extended Benefits (EB) will be available to eligible Ohioans who exhaust both the maximum 26 weeks of regular unemployment benefits and 13 weeks of Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) announced today. The additional weeks are possible because Ohio’s insured unemployment rate exceeded a minimum threshold. The insured unemployment rate is a measure of the number of people receiving unemployment benefits as a percentage of the labor force.

“We will soon begin notifying individuals who may qualify for this additional assistance to instruct them how to apply,” said ODJFS Director Kimberly Hall. “Although high unemployment rates are never welcome news, we are happy that we can offer this extra support for Ohioans who are unemployed through no fault of their own and who are having difficulty finding work.”

The federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which was signed into law on March 27, created three new unemployment programs:

•Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provides up to 39 weeks of benefits to many who historically have not qualified for unemployment benefits, such as self-employed workers, 1099 tax filers, part-time workers, and those who lack sufficient work history.

•Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) provides an additional $600 per week through July 25 to existing benefit amounts for those in multiple programs, including regular unemployment benefits, PUA, Trade benefits, and SharedWork Ohio benefits.

•Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) provides up to 13 weeks of additional benefits for Ohioans who exhaust their maximum 26 weeks of regular unemployment benefits on or after July 1, 2019. This program is available through Dec. 26, 2020.

Individuals who exhaust their regular unemployment benefits are potentially eligible for PEUC. If they exhaust PEUC, they are potentially eligible for EB. If they exhaust all three programs, they are potentially eligible for PUA. While the EB program is in effect, individuals who initially received regular unemployment benefits may be eligible for a total of 59 weeks of benefits, and individuals who received PUA but not regular unemployment benefits may be eligible for a total of 46 weeks of benefits.

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services manages vital programs that strengthen Ohio families. These include job training and employment services, unemployment insurance, cash and food assistance, child care, child and adult protective services, adoption, and child support services.

Staff Report