Federally-Funded Extended Benefits Extended

Congress has approved a two-month extension for federally-funded unemployment benefits. As a result of the new legislation, the Extended Benefit (EB) program in Michigan will now expire the week ending March 10, 2012, instead of January 7, 2012. Additionally, the Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) program will continue to accept applications up until that same date.

The EB program, which began in January 2009, had been paying up to 20 weeks of federally-funded unemployment benefits in Michigan to those who exhausted their state and EUC benefits. The Agency has begun notifying those in the EB program that the expiration has been extended to the week ending March 10, 2012.

The federally-funded EUC program and its four tiers provide up to 53 weeks of unemployment benefits to jobless workers who deplete their state unemployment benefits.

There are several ways for unemployed workers to check the balance on their claims. Claimants who have online Claim Web Accounts can go to their web account and see how many weeks they have remaining. Claimants can also call the MARVIN system at 1-866-638-3993 and press option 2. Individuals who want to register for an online web account can access the portal by visiting www.michigan.gov/uia and then selecting the link “UIA Online Services for Unemployed Workers.”

The expiration of the federally-funded programs will not affect the state’s unemployment benefit program, which will continue to provide up to 26 weeks of unemployment benefits to those who are newly unemployed and meet the program’s eligibility requirements. Those who are newly unemployed as of January 15, 2012, and meet the program’s eligibility requirements will be eligible for up to 20 weeks of state unemployment benefits.

Additional information about the end of EB and EUC is available on the UIA website (www.michigan.gov/uia). In addition, the Agency has also established a toll-free number (1-866-MI-HELPS) for people to call for pre-recorded information about the extension programs. Individuals nearing the end of their unemployment benefits may also visit the state’s Helping Hand website (www.michigan.gov/helping hand) for information about family support, housing, health care, jobs and training, and other services. People can also go online to apply for food assistance and to determine if they may be eligible for certain types of public assistance.

For more information about LARA, please visit www.michigan.gov/lara. Follow us on Twitter www.twitter.com/michiganLARA, “Like” us on Facebook or find us on YouTube www.youtube.com/michiganLARA