Normally, anyone who’s unemployed through no fault of their own can qualify for unemployment benefits. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, that’s changed.
The federal government is letting states expand who can get unemployment benefits right now. That includes:
People who have been furloughed aka when your company hits pause on your job and your paycheck, until it can (hopefully) hire you back later.
People who work for companies that have temporarily stopped operations because of the virus.
People who are quarantined and expect to go back to work afterward. You may have to show proof that you were mandated to quarantine by a health professional.
People who leave their job because they’re at risk of being infected at work.
People who leave work because they’re infected or taking care of an infected family member.
Primary caregivers who can't work because their child's school is closed due to COVID-19
What if I work for myself?
Under the coronavirus relief bill President Trump signed last month, freelancers, people who are self-employed, and gig workers – like Uber drivers – can also now apply for unemployment benefits.
What if I work multiple jobs and lose one?
You might still be able to file for unemployment. It varies by state, and might depend on how much money you’re still making from your other jobs. So check online with your state’s unemployment agency.
I’m still technically working, just not as much. Will I qualify?
It depends on your state. But you may qualify for partial unemployment benefits if your employer cuts your hours or requires you to work sporadically, like one week every month.
Ready to apply? We walk through all the steps over here.
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