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Lost Wages Program

Updated: Feb 9, 2021

Last updated: 10/21/2020

Answers to your FAQs regarding the Lost Wages Program

Did CA get approved for five weeks? When will they distribute?

  • Yes. They are paying out the first three weeks. The additional two will be distributed after Phase 1 and Phase 2 are done.

  • Update 9/24: EDD released a news release on 9/24 that the following week they will begin issuing the fourth and fifth weeks of LWA.

  • Update 10/21: All six weeks should be paid out by now

What about the sixth week?

  • Sixth week has been paid out

What weeks does LWA cover?

  • 7/25 - 8/1 --- LWA week 1

  • 8/2 - 8/8 --- LWA week 2

  • 8/9 - 8/15 --- LWA week 3

  • 8/16 - 8/22 --- LWA week 4

  • 8/23 - 8/29 --- LWA week 5

  • 8/30 - 9/5 --- LWA week 6

How will payments be issued for LWA?

  • EDD said people will get it in lump sum, but people are experience deposits of $300, $600 and $900. So it really varies. The only thing is that it will be distributed into Phase 1 and Phase 2 for the first three weeks of LWA

  • Those receiving checks will get separate checks if eligible

LWA eligibility requirements:

  • Minimum of $100 or more weekly benefit award. If you're weekly benefit award on your main page is less than $100 - you do not qualify. Sorry :(

  • Received payment on claim between July 26 and August 15

  • Must self-attest that you are unemployed/partially unemployed due to disruptions caused by COVID-19

What if I have a WBA of 90 - 99? Are they doing anything for us? Why did I qualify for the $600 before and not this?

  • CARES Act is different from LWA and they both operate with different rules and eligibility requirements. EDD is simply following the rules of what LWA requires. See question prior for what the rules are.

  • If you have a problem with it, contact your government officials and push them to pass a stimulus like CARES as well as backdating it to these dates. Information to contact government officials here.

What if I worked during those weeks? Do I qualify?

  • If you worked between July 26 and August 15 -- as long as you received $1 from your UI benefits, you will get the LWA (assuming you meet the other eligibility requirements)

  • If you had excessive earnings, were fully employed, or disqualified -- YOU DO NOT QUALIFY FOR LWA

When will Lost Wage Assistant Program begin?

  • EDD says payments will start September 7, 2020 in PHASES

How do you apply?

  • You don't. If you qualify you get it. See above question.

Who does Phase 1 cover?

  • Claimants who previously provided info that they were unemployed due to COVID-19 on their initial application

  • Those who have already received their regular state or federal unemployment payments for weeks between July 26 and August 15

  • EDD plans on finishing payments for this group by week ending in 9/26

  • UPDATE 9/24: Phase 1 payments have been issued and completed based on EDD newsletter

Who does Phase 2 cover?

  • Claimants who did not have the opportunity to indicate they were unemployed due to COVID-19 reason on their initial application and still meet the $100 WBA eligibility requirement

  • EDD will send notifications to claimants to complete a one-time self-certification to inform if they were unemployed due to disruptions caused by COVID-19, beginning September 15. CHECK YOUR ONLINE PORTAL

  • Once claimants get notification, submit your self-certification through your UI Online account for faster processing

  • UPDATE 9/24: Payments are being made to those who self-attested

Will the additional federal benefit be retroactive?

  • Yes, eligible claimants can receive benefits retroactively from week ending August 1, 2020.

Will it be implemented immediately?

  • EDD expects to start payments in phases September 7, 2020

How much is coming from the federal government?

  • The memorandum mandates "75% Federal cost share be made available for lost wages assistance to eligible claimants"

  • Also states Secretary of Homeland Security "shall approve a lost wage assistance program that authorizes the Governor to provide $400 payment per week, which shall reflect a $300 Federal contribution"

Will the Congress be back in session?

  • You can see floor proceedings here

Important Takeaways:

  • Program will last a MINIMUM of three weeks for California

  • Requirement of $100/weeks benefit limiting those who really need the supplement

  • You must have RECEIVED PAYMENT July 25 - August 15 on your claim

  • Congress can STILL pass a new stimulus. See when next floor proceedings here

Memorandum in detail, here

FEMA Lost Wages Supplemental Payment Assistance, here


Lost Wages Program Eligibility Calculator

I've been learning how to code and I've decided to practice by making something practical. Here is a calculator to see if you qualify or not while working. I plan on making other calculators in the future. Subscribe to be notified when they release.


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Tools & Resources:

NEW: direct Unemployment Guru Help

We are now servicing people who have claims that have been stuck for months or those who need assistance with appeals. If you have other questions you can ask in our forum which we check periodically.

Tools & Calculators

Unemployment Gurus has tools and calculators to figure out those really confusing questions:

  • How much can I earn and still qualify for the FPUC $300 from the new stimulus?

  • Do I qualify for FED-ED?

  • How much will I get if I work?

  • What is my standard base period?

  • Do I qualify for LWA?

  • Am I eligible for UI?

Preview tools here

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