Collecting Unemployment For A Year You May Need To Reapply To Keep Getting Benefits
by Maurie Backman | April 22, 2021
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If you’ve been on unemployment since the start of the pandemic, you may need to apply for benefits again.
The coronavirus pandemic has been raging for over a year now, which means that many Americans have been out of work since March of 2020. The overall jobless rate has, thankfully, come down a lot since peaking in April of 2020. But long-term unemployment remains a problem for many people, particularly in hard-hit industries like hospitality.
But some people who have been collecting unemployment benefits for a full year may run into a snag. That’s because some states may require individuals to apply for benefits again after a year.
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Unemployment Benefits And 2020 Tax Returns
Without this new tax exemption, many people who claimed unemployment benefits in 2020 could have faced an unwelcome tax bill.
Generally, unemployment benefits are taxable income. That includes standard state unemployment benefits as well as 2020 federal benefits expansions, like PUA, PEUC, and other federal relief measures.
But millions of claimants did not have federal taxes withheld from their benefits last year, whether because they didnt know they were taxable or because they couldnt afford to have some amount of benefits withheld, according to analysis by the Century Foundation.;
To further complicate things, while state unemployment offices are supposed to offer standard 10% federal tax withholding, not all states offered withholding consistently across different CARES Act programs.;
Researchers estimate fewer than 40% of unemployment insurance payments issued in 2020 had taxes withheld.
The average unemployed worker received $14,000 in unemployment benefits in 2020, the Century Foundation estimates. Now, with $10,200 of that income tax-exempt, the average claimant will owe taxes on just $3,800 of the money they took in.
What You Need For Apply For Unemployment Benefits
To apply for Unemployment Insurance benefits, you need to provide personal information including your Social Security number, birth date, home address, email address , and phone number.
You also need information about your employment history from the last 15 months, including:
- Names of all employers, plus addresses and phone numbers
- Reasons for leaving those jobs
- Work start and end dates
- Recall date
You may need additional information in certain situations:
- If you are not a U.S. citizen your Alien Registration number
- If you have children their birth dates and Social Security numbers
- If youre in a union your union name and local number
- If you were in the military your DD-214 Member 4 form. If you dont have it, you can request your DD-214 online.
- If you worked for the federal government your SF8 form
If youre a non-U.S. citizen applying for UI benefits, DUA must verify that you are legally authorized to work in the United States. Non-English speakers can apply for UI in their own languages on DUA’s foreign language application site.
If you’re not sure that UI is right for you, you can check your eligibility or review our overview of unemployment assistance benefit programs.
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When Benefits May Stop
To be sure, there is a limited amount of time for unemployed workers to have access to the extended benefits programs from the CARES Act.
Both PEUC and PUA will expire at the end of the year if the programs are not extended by another stimulus package. So far, Democrats and Republicans have failed to reach an agreement on an additional coronavirus aid bill.
That means that millions of workers will stop receiving benefits in the programs on Dec. 31, regardless of their remaining eligibility.;
Once you establish a benefit year, and maybe go back to work for a little while but get laid off again, you can just go ahead and reopen your old claimMichele EvermoreSenior policy analyst at National Employment Law Project
In addition, workers receiving benefits in all programs were eligible for an additional $600 weekly unemployment benefit, which expired in July. In August, President Donald Trump signed an executive order that extended $300 in extra weekly unemployment for some workers, but some states have already run out of funding for the program.
On Thursday, the House passed Democrats’ $2.2 trillion coronavirus stimulus bill, which would extend most programs and reinstate the additional $600 weekly unemployment benefit, but the package is unlikely to pass the Republican-controlled Senate and become law.
How Do I Get A Chip Debit Card
Bank of America is sending chip cards to new claimants starting July 25, 2021. If you already have a debit card, it will be replaced with a chip card when it expires.
If your card has been lost or stolen, you must contact Bank of America at 1-866-692-9374 .
If your card is damaged, you can order a replacement card online by visiting the Bank of America debit card website.
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Filing An Initial Claim
Posted: Sep 04, 2021 ;· Unpaid Waiting Week Reinstatement. If you file a new Unemployment Compensation claim as of September 5, 2021, or later you will have to serve an unpaid waiting week. If you reopen an existing UC claim effective September 5, 2021, or later, on which you have received no payments yet, you will have to serve an unpaid waiting week.This is especially noteworthy for PEUC claimants
What Is A Waiting Period Week
Your waiting period week is the first eligible week for benefits under each claim filed. You must serve a waiting period week for each claim filed. You will never receive payment for this first week, but it must be claimed to be counted. It does not mean you should wait a week before filing a UI claim.
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Tax Returns And Third Stimulus Payment
The bills mid-tax season passage may have caused a lot of confusion for unemployed taxpayers trying to determine the best time to file.;
But the good news, says , senior fellow at the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, is that you will receive the full amount youre owed, even if there is a delay.
For taxpayers whose stimulus eligibility was processed based on 2019 returns, at some point possibly later this year, but definitely when they file a tax return next year the IRS will bump up the money and send an additional amount or what they would have received based on 2020 income.;
In other words, you may have to reconcile your payment using a similar claim to the Recovery Rebate Credit for the previous two stimulus payments.;;
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Understanding The Certification Questions
Posted: Were you too sick or injured to work? A No Answer. Answer No if either: You were physically able Was there any reason that you could not have accepted full-time Did you look for work? Starting July 11, 2021, most people will be expected to search for work to Did you refuse any work? A No Answer. Answer No if you did not refuse any offers of work this Did you begin attending any kind of school or training? A No Answer. Answer No if you did not start Did you work or earn any money? A No Answer. Answer No if you did not work this week and you Federal income tax If you want to have federal income taxes, select your choice. If you Change of mailing address or phone number You can use UI Online to update your See full list on edd.ca.gov
Information Required When Filing For Unemployment Insurance Benefits
The following information is needed when filing for UI benefits:
- social security number
- name, payroll address and telephone number of your last employer
- start and end dates of your last job
- whether or not you will receive vacation pay, severance, etc.
- alien registration number
- DD-214 if you served in the U.S. military during the last 18 months
- Verifying your identity by answering security questions
- Standard Form 8 if you worked for the federal government in the last 18 months
- name, date of birth, and social security number;of any dependents that are;claimed as exemptions on your federal income tax return
- Spouses may be claimed as a dependent if their gross wages were $120.00 or less in the week prior to filing your claim.
- Self-employment does not count as gross wages for dependent purposes.
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My Employer Didnt Report My Wages During My Benefit Year How Do I Reapply
According to our records, you did not earn enough wages to establish a new claim, so we will continue to process federal extension weeks on your claim. Continue to certify for benefits if you have weeks available and check your payment status on UI Online.
Note: If you think you earned enough wages, but your employer did not report them to us, you can submit a new application by paper or phone.
Reopening Your Claim For Benefits
Things to know when reopening an existing claim:
- Do not create a new account. Use your same MiWAM username and password you used previously.
- Visit Michigan.gov/uia for instructions if you forgot your MiWAM password.
- Reopen your claim during the first week of unemployment or reduced work hours or;wages.
- Have your Employer Account number or Federal Identification Number . It may be provided by your employer or found on your W-2.
- Payments will be made using the same payment method previously selected.
- If you previously had a Bank of America card, the funds will be added to the card.
- If you no longer have the BOA card, or have a problem with your existing card, contact Bank of America at 1-866-436-1964 or www.bankofamerica.com/miuiadebitcard.
- To change your payment method, click the Claimant Services tab; then click Modify Benefit Payment Method.
- Be sure to read and respond to all requests for information to avoid payment delays.
- When certifying for benefits, be sure to report your gross earnings in the week in which they were earned, not when you were paid.
- After youve completed your claim, a Confirmation page will display the date of your next certification.
Reopen or File Your Claim Online with MiWAM at Michigan.gov/uia.
Questions? Contact UIA Customer Service at 1-866-500-0017 or Chat with an agent using MiWAM.
View the step by step video – Reopening Your Claim;
Reopening Your PUA Claim
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What If I Am Out Of Work Due To A Strike
You are disqualified from receiving unemployment benefits during an active labor dispute. You are not qualified for unemployment benefits when your partial or total unemployment is due to:
Filing A Weekly Claim
To maintain Unemployment Insurance benefits, you are required to file weekly claims confirming that you continue to meet the requirements to receive Unemployment Insurance.
You must file a claim every week you are unemployed, or underemployed.
The benefit week starts on a Sunday and ends on Saturday.
Learn about Arizonas work search requirements on the work search web page.
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Pandemic Unemployment Insurance Benefits
The novel coronavirus is having a significant impact on the workplace. Employers are cutting back staff, having employees work remotely, and changing operational procedures to help ensure employee and customer safety.
Heres information on unemployment and sick leave benefit programs for workers impacted by the coronavirus, whats available, how to apply for benefits, and what you can expect to receive.
Is There An Unemployment Waiting Period
Unemployment insurance waiting periods are 100% state-driven. Many states have what is known as a “waiting period,” otherwise referred to as a “waiting week” as part of their unemployment insurance laws.
For example, in New York State, you must serve an unpaid waiting period equivalent to one full week of unemployment benefits before you receive payments. Minnesota has a non-payable waiting week before benefits can be collected. In some locations, the waiting week benefits will be paid, but you will have to wait until the end of the claim period in order to collect those funds.
Based on the state-by-state differential, it’s best to check with your;state unemployment office website as soon as you lose your job;for information regarding the unemployment waiting period in your location.
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How Do I Stay Eligible
Posted: See your states unemployment insurance program for updated information about self-employed and gig workers. You can find details of your own states program by selecting your state in the box below, but most states require the following: File weekly or biweekly claims, usually by mail or phone.
I Need Help To File My Claim
If you are disabled or unable to file the claim yourself, you may seek help from a trusted person. You do not have to file your claim yourself. However, no matter how much you trust the person you choose to aid you, we strongly recommend that you be present each time they help you and use your PIN.
Also, do keep in mind that you will be held responsible for the actions of your helper. Furthermore, you will be subject to penalties, and you may even forfeit your benefits if you are NOT PRESENT when a helper aids you.
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How Is My Weekly Benefit Amount Determined
Your weekly benefit amount is the amount of money you may receive each week. This is calculated by dividing your total of wages in the last two quarters by 52. That number is then rounded to the next lower whole dollar. In order to receive a payment, the total must equal to or exceed $15. The exact amount of benefits and the length of time that you may get benefits cannot be determined until you actually file your claim for benefits.;
What Is The Difference Between Eligibility And Qualification
Eligibility involves working and earning enough money within your base period to establish a claim for benefits, and meeting the requirements of searching for work and being able and available for work. Eligibility is determined weekly. Ineligibility is a postponement of benefits until you meet the weekly requirements. Qualification involves being separated from work through no fault of your own. Disqualification is a loss of benefits. It is possible to be eligible and disqualified for benefits. It is also possible to be ineligible and qualified for benefits. You must be both qualified and eligible to receive benefits.;
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How Much Will I Get
Applying for unemployment benefits starts a “benefit year” for that individual. A benefit year is the 52-week period following the date you filed a claim.
Someone who filed for unemployment in March 2020 would have a benefit year that lasts until March 2021, for example.
Jobless workers can collect benefits over that period, even through multiple waves of unemployment.
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However, not all states operate their programs this way, O’Leary said.
What Is A Benefit Year
Your benefit year is the 52-week period from the date you register for work and first file a valid claim. If you are still attached to your employers payroll, your benefit year begins on the Sunday before your payroll week ends. If you are not attached to an employers payroll, your benefit year begins on the Sunday of the calendar week that you file a valid claim and register for work.;
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Planning For 2021 Taxes If Youre Still Unemployed
The tax exemption for $10,200 in unemployment benefits currently only applies to unemployment income you collected in 2020, even though the bill also extended weekly $300 federal unemployment benefits payments through September.;
You should consider any unemployment benefits you receive in 2021 as fully taxable. If you can afford to do so, avoid a surprise bill and penalties next tax season by electing to have taxes withheld from your weekly benefits payments or by paying quarterly estimated taxes throughout the year.
You can elect to have 10% of your unemployment benefits withheld from your weekly check. Even if you did not select this withholding on your original claim, you can file Form W-4V with your states unemployment office to begin 10% tax withholding on future unemployment payments.;;
You can also forgo automatic withholding and instead pay estimated quarterly taxes on your unemployment income. Use Form 1040-ES to figure and file your quarterly payments. If you choose to pay estimated taxes on your unemployment benefits, the first payment is due April 15, 2021.