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W2/PUA: 5/14 News Release - Extension & PUA update

Updated: Feb 10

Entire EDD news release here.

Relevant information below:

Important Note: Soundbites from EDD Director Sharon Hilliard about the new federal extension and PUA program can be downloaded here: https://vimeo.com/418641612/24b3e94d03

New federal extension planned for launch

The EDD has been working around the clock to implement a new 13-week federal extension of unemployment benefits called the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) established in the federal CARES Act. Due to the different dates, eligibility requirements, and interactions with other UI programs, including the new PUA program, the implementation of this extension has increased complexities. In order to make these PEUC benefits available as quickly as possible during this historic pandemic, the EDD will be rolling the extension out in two phases.

  • Phase 1 – Starting May 27th , the EDD will begin automatically filing PEUC extensions for those who exhausted all available benefits on their claim with a benefit year that started on or after June 2, 2019, and expects the first phase to be completed in early June. These individuals will receive a notice through the mail about 5-7 days after the PEUC extension is filed. This notice will include instructions on how to certify for extension benefit payments if you remain unemployed. Claimants are also encouraged to watch for updates in the Inbox of their UI Online account.

  • Phase 2 – Starting in early July, the EDD will begin mailing notices to those who ran out of their regular UI benefits sometime after July 2018 who are not part of the more recent group of those who exhausted benefits in Phase 1. More details will be released later. But the EDD recommends these individuals who remain out of work apply for another UI claim through UI Online if they haven’t already done so. The EDD will be required to first check whether or not they would qualify for a new regular claim before an extension could be filed.

Second phase of Pandemic Unemployment Assistance launches next week

The EDD has also been diligently working to implement the next phase of the new federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program (PUA) that applies to the self-employed, business owners, independent contractors and others who are not eligible for regular state-provided UI benefits and are unemployed as a direct result of COVID-19.

  • Starting on May 20th - The EDD will have new programming available to potentially increase weekly benefit amounts that started at the minimum level of $167 per week when the program launched on April 28 and will begin recalculating awards for qualified individuals. Based on the total income reported by the claimant for calendar year 2019, payments could go up to a maximum of $450 per week. In general, claimants would have to earn more than $17,368 annually to qualify for an increase. More information about this process will be available on the