State Unemployment Extended Benefits Programs
Regardless of when claims started and how many weeks of PEUC claimed , ALL enhanced benefit programs are currently set to expire September 4, 2021. However in many states like New Jersey, eligible claimants that have not collected all their state extended benefits will transition to the states EB program once PEUC expires.
Unfortunately, unless states expand benefit programs coverage, PUA claimants will not qualify for state extended unemployment benefits.
How To File Your Taxes If You Received Unemployment Benefits In 2021
If you received unemployment benefits, youll owe income taxes on those benefits.
When tax season approaches, many Americans will face the prospect of filing their income taxes. For millions of people, this will include their unemployment benefits.
Knowing how to file correctly will help you avoid a lot of trouble with the IRS. Lets take a look.
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Are Unemployment Benefits Tax
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Receiving unemployment benefits is no different from earning a paycheck when it comes to income taxes, at least under normal circumstances when the U.S. isnt struggling with a pandemic. Unemployment income is considered taxable income and must be reported on your tax return. It is included in your taxable income for the tax year.
While the federal government tweaked this rule in 2020 in response to COVID-19, those who collected unemployment income in 2021 should expect to pay the full taxes on those benefits. As of Nov. 29, 2021, the federal government and the Internal Revenue Service did not say that the rule would be tweaked again.
Heres what to know about paying taxes on unemployment benefits in tax year 2021, the return youll file in 2022.
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How Does The Extension Congress Passed In December 2020 Affect My Benefits
Congress passed an extension of the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program on March 11, 2021, and brought back the Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program that now provides an extra $300 until the week ending September 4th, 2021. Learn more from our page about How the Stimulus Bill Affects Regular UC.
Payments To Employees Exempt From Futa Tax
Some of the payments you make to employees are not included in the calculation for the federal unemployment tax. These payments include:
- Fringe benefits, such as meals and lodging, contributions to employee health plans, and reimbursements for qualified moving expenses,
- Group term life insurance benefits,
- Employer contributions to employee retirement accounts accounts), and
- Dependent care payments to employees.
You can find the complete list of payments exempt from FUTA Tax in the instructions for Form 940. The type of payments to employees that are exempt from state unemployment tax may be different. Check with your states employment department for details.
If you pay employee moving expenses and bicycle commuting reimbursements to employees, you must include the amount of these payments in the FUTA tax calculation.
In some states, wages paid to corporate officers, certain payments of sick pay by unions, and certain fringe benefits are also excluded from state unemployment tax. If wages subject to FUTA arent subject to state unemployment tax, you may be liable for FUTA tax at the maximum rate of 6%.
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Ca Benefit Year End Considerations
- If your benefit year has expired, you must file another unemployment claim. The EDD will send you a notice telling you to file a new claim if you are still unemployed. UI Online is still the fastest way to apply. If you are not actively claiming benefits and your year ends, you will need to still apply but wont get a notice from the EDD.
- Some other considerations around your BYE date and type of claim:
- If you are currently collecting PEUC benefits and filed a new regular UI claim, we might continue paying benefits on your PEUC extension, instead of your regular UI claim if the weekly benefit amount on your PEUC extension is at least $25 more than the weekly benefit amount on your new regular UI claim.
- The regular UI claim you recently qualified for will be on hold until you collect all available PEUC benefits, or until the PEUC extension ends.
- Once you have collected all available benefits on your PEUC extension, and if you are still unemployed and eligible, we will automatically start paying benefits on your new regular UI claim. There is no need to contact the EDD.
- If you qualify for a new unemployment claim, but the weekly benefit amount is less than what you were earning on your PEUC extension, you will finish collecting the rest of your PEUC extension and then we will switch you to your new unemployment claim.
- If you dont qualify for a new unemployment claim, you will continue collecting the rest of your PEUC claim and any extended weeks
Am I Eligible For Regular Unemployment Compensation
Each state sets its own unemployment insurance benefits eligibility guidelines, but you usually qualify if you:
- Are unemployed through no fault of your own. In most states, this means you have to have separated from your last job due to a lack of available work.
- Meet work and wage requirements. You must meet your states requirements for wages earned or time worked during an established period of time referred to as a “base period.”
- Meet any additional state requirements. Find details of your own states program.
Income Tax Relief Under The American Rescue Plan Act
The American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 provided additional relief to middle- and lower-income taxpayers by waiving federal income taxes on the first $10,200 of unemployment benefits received in 2020. This relief applied to benefits received through both state and federal unemployment programs for individuals or couples with an adjusted gross income of $150,000 or less in 2020.
Though many states have decided to mirror the federal exemption, CNBC reports that some are offering partial relief while others have decided to tax unemployment benefits. Check with your state tax authority to find out how it plans to treat unemployment benefits in regard to state taxes.
|Outline of Programs in Response to the Coronavirus Pandemic|
|Provided a federal benefit of $600 per week: Expired July 31, 2020.||Added $300 per week until March 14, 2021.||Extended FPUC until Sept. 5, 2021.|
: H.R. 748, U.S. Department of Labor, H.R. 1319
The Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation , Pandemic Unemployment Assistance , Extended Benefits , $300 Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation , and $100 Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation programs all expired on September 5, 2021.
How Do I File For Maryland Unemployment
You can apply for Maryland unemployment benefits online or over the phone, depending on what is most comfortable for you. Before starting the process, be sure to gather all the information youll need to file for unemployment .
Its important that you file for unemployment benefits as soon as you lose your job, because the state does not provide any backpayments, meaning that youll only receive financial assistance for the time after your application has been approved.
Applying online: Marylands Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation allows you to apply for benefits online through its website, . The online application walks you through the process, and you can log in to check the status of your application while it is processing.
Applying over the phone: Choosing to apply through the Maryland unemployment phone number can help if you would like someone to walk you through the process, or if you want to speak with an unemployment representative. Unemployment Claim Centers operate Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. ET to 2 p.m. ET, excluding state holidays. The Maryland unemployment number you call will depend on where you live.
|If You Live In|
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Several States Ending Pandemic Unemployment Benefits Early
Following recent job reports that showed a shortage of workers to fill open positions, many states have ended one or more of the federally funded pandemic unemployment programs up to 10 weeks earlier than planned in order to incentivize workers to return to work. This includes the PUA program and associated $300 FPUC extra weekly payment.
The argument is that these generous UI benefits deter lower income workers from returning to work. Opponents argue that the reason people are not going back to work is due to fears around getting COVID and/or child care and schooling restrictions. You can see more on which states are ending the PUA and $300 FPUC here and this recent YouTube video on this topic.
States will still be obligated to pay active unemployment claims up to the early termination date in their state . This includes any missing or retroactive payments. New claims for these federal programs wont be accepted after this date and instead claimants will have to rely on the pre-pandemic state unemployment programs in place.
While a few states are not specifically ending their participation in the PUA program early , the majority are as you can see in the table below. This unfortunately will hit PUA claimants the hardest since they dont qualify for traditional state unemployment.
|States Ending Unemployment Early|
|$300 FPUC, PUA, PEUC, MEUC|
Weeks Of Unemployment Insurance Available And Unemployment Rates
The remaining six states periodically update their maximum weeks of UI available based on changes in the states unemployment rate:
- Alabama currently provides up to 14 weeks of UI for new enrollees, with an additional five-week extension for those enrolled in a state-approved training program
- Georgia provides 14 weeks of UI, but in the COVID-19 emergency that has been increased to 26 weeks
- Florida currently provides up to 12 weeks for claims filed after January 1, 2022
- Idaho currently provides up to 20 weeks for new enrollees based on its November unemployment rate
- Kansas currently provides up to 16 weeks of UI and
- North Carolina currently provides up to 12 weeks for claims filed after January 1, 2022.
State laws in many states with a maximum of 26 weeks employ a sliding scale based on a workers earnings history to determine the maximum number of weeks for which an individual worker qualifies. Except in Connecticut, the District of Columbia, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York, West Virginia, and Puerto Rico, many UI recipients maximum is fewer than 26 weeks.
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Learn About Unemployment Extension Programs In Connecticut
If your unemployment benefits have run out and you need an unemployment benefits extension, there are two options you must consider, depending on the amount of time you need benefits for. Each option is a federal unemployment extension program and may require you to file an additional application or provide proof of an emergency circumstance.
The unemployment extension program known as Emergency Unemployment Compensation or EUC08 is available in four tiers of extended benefit periods. The EUC tier of benefits you are given will depend on the states unemployment rate at the time of the programs activation and on the case of the applicant.
The tiers of unemployment benefits extension in CT are as follows:
A second option for receiving an unemployment benefits extension is to file for Emergency Benefits . Emergency benefits can only be granted once you have reached the end of your Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits. This extension can provide you with an additional 13 weeks of benefits, but just like EUC, the program is only activated when your state experiences overwhelming unemployment numbers. Additionally, if your area has been designated a depressed zone by the Department of Labor, you can receive an additional seven weeks of unemployment benefits through EB.
How To Get Cobra
Group health plans must give covered employees and their families a notice explaining their COBRA rights. Plans must have rules for how COBRA coverage is offered, how beneficiaries may choose to get it and when they can stop coverage. For more COBRA information, see COBRA Premium Subsidy. The page links to information about COBRA including:
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How Do I Send The Irs My Tax Payment
If youre mailing your tax payment, you can elect to have the funds withdrawn directly from your bank account or include a personal check or money order. If you choose the latter, make it payable to US Treasury and include your name, address, phone number, Social Security number or Individual Tax ID Number. Under no circumstances should you ever mail cash to the IRS.
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What To Do When Unemployment Extensions Are Unavailable
Unemployment benefits extension unavailability is something that UI claimants should be aware of from the beginning.
The state unemployment agency should provide information on whether or not an unemployment compensation extension is available at any given time. If there is no benefits extension for unemployment available, the unemployment claimant may need to explore other means of assistance such as other financial assistance programs.
Unemployment extensions are not the only form of assistance available for unemployed residents.
Examples of other available programs include the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program and Weatherization Assistance Program, both of which can help unemployment claimants who are losing their benefits to lower their monthly bill payments.
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families provides cash benefits to low-income residents.
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Policy Basics: How Many Weeks Of Unemployment Compensation Are Available
Workers in most states are eligible for up to 26 weeks of benefits from the regular state-funded unemployment compensation program, although nine states provide fewer weeks, and two provide more. Extended Benefits are not triggered on in any state. Additional weeks of pandemic federal benefits ended in all states on September 6, 2021.
The federal-state unemployment insurance system helps many people who have lost their jobs by temporarily replacing part of their wages. Under certain circumstances, unemployed workers who exhaust their regular state-funded unemployment benefits before they can find work can receive additional weeks of benefits.
Under the CARES Act responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, all states received access to federal funding to provide additional weeks of Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Assistance benefits to people who exhausted their regular state benefits, and Pandemic Unemployment Assistance to many others who lost their jobs through no fault of their own but who were not normally eligible for UI in their state. These and other pandemic-related emergency UI programs ended nationwide the first weekend of September 2021, but many states stopped providing these federal benefits before that.
The map below shows the maximum number of weeks of benefits that are currently available in each state.
The two states providing more than the 26-week maximum are:
The states providing fewer than the standard 26-week maximum include:
What Is The Eligibility For Fed
- Have a regular unemployment insurance claim that started on or after May 19, 2019.
- Used all benefits on your UI claim and the PEUC extension, or your claim has expired.
- Do not qualify for a new UI claim in California or any other state.
- Meet UI eligibility requirements and are not disqualified.
- Made enough earnings in the base period of your regular UI claim.
FED-ED payments will be the same as the weekly benefit amount from your UI claim, however, there are limits to the total benefit amount.
Your maximum benefit amount will be the lesser of either:
- 50% of the maximum benefit amount of your UI claim
- 13 times the weekly benefit amount
EDD shared this example:
You received a weekly benefit amount of $400 and a maximum benefit amount of $8,800 in your last regular UI claim and you have collected all of the maximum benefit amount. To calculate the FED-ED maximum benefit amount:
- Calculation 1: 50% of $8,800 = $4,400
- Calculation 2: 13 X $400 = $5,200
Your FED-ED maximum benefit amount will be $4,400 because Calculation 1 is the lesser of the two.
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How Do I Apply
To receive unemployment insurance benefits, you need to file a claim with the unemployment insurance program in the state where you worked. Depending on the state, claims may be filed in person, by telephone, or online.
- You should contact your state’s unemployment insurance program as soon as possible after becoming unemployed.
- Generally, you should file your claim with the state where you worked. If you worked in a state other than the one where you now live or if you worked in multiple states, the state unemployment insurance agency where you now live can provide information about how to file your claim with other states.
- When you file a claim, you will be asked for certain information, such as addresses and dates of your former employment. To make sure your claim is not delayed, be sure to give complete and correct information.
- Find the contact information for your state’s unemployment office to start your claim.
Expanding State Extended Unemployment Benefits Could Protect 395000 New Yorkers But The Legislature Must Act Now
The New York State Senate
New York can take precautionary measures now to protect unemployed residents in the event that Congress allows federal unemployment insurance programs to expire on Labor Day. This can be done by the State Legislature passing a bill that ensures the states Extended Benefits program remains in place under the total unemployment rate activation trigger when 50% state funding is required.
Right now, of the nine states with their Extended Benefits programs turned on, only four will continue beyond Labor Day. The majority of these state programs will shut down because the federal government will resume covering half the cost instead of providing full funding.
While neighboring states Connecticut and New Jersey will rightfully keep supporting long-term unemployed workers through the pandemic recovery, New York will have its Extended Benefits program shut off.
That is unless legislators, in concert with incoming Governor Kathy Hochul, work to keep the program active.
According to the most recent U.S. Department of Labor numbers, 725,000 New Yorkers were enrolled in the federal Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program and 10,000 in the states Extended Benefits program the week ending July 31. The way that these programs function is that workers exhausting their PEUC benefits transition onto EB. However, if the state EB program also turns off on September 6, hundreds of thousands unemployed New Yorkers will lose a key source of income.
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