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How to return to work and keep unemployment benefits

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Last year, millions of people across the country received federal unemployment benefits as part of the US bailout stimulus bill. While federal unemployment benefits ended on September 6, 2021, state-issued unemployment insurance is still available, and short-time work insurance is also available in many states. Partial Unemployment Insurance is a program that allows workers to return to work for a new employer on reduced hours – that is, part-time – while receiving part of the unemployment benefits they currently receive. .

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Although you may already be familiar with the short-time work insurance program in your state, which often reduces the amount of unemployment benefits a person can receive based on the number of hours worked, states have the power to improve the capacity of partial unemployment insurance by increasing the income threshold where workers can both work and receive unemployment insurance benefits.

However, like regular unemployment insurance, it requires those receiving unemployment benefits to actively seek employment. Here is more info about the program.

How to Find Out Your State’s Partial Unemployment Insurance Program

If you are on unemployment benefits and want to work part-time but don’t want to lose all of your unemployment insurance benefits, you may be able to do so by applying for partial benefits. By being able to work part-time and still claim some of your partial benefits, you may be able to have more income than just relying on unemployment insurance benefits alone.

The best way to find out about your state’s short-time work insurance program is to check with your state, as each state is responsible for administering its own program. You can easily find links to your state’s unemployment insurance program by using the unemployment benefits search tool on CareerOneStop, a U.S. Department-sponsored career exploration, training, and employment site. work.

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How Some States’ UI Rules Changed

Many states have changed their rules about how part-time work impacts the amount of unemployment benefits a person receives. For example, New York now uses what it calls an “hours-based” approach to calculating short-time work benefits. Before the change, the state reduced benefits for each day a person worked.

According to the New York State Department of Labor website, you can now work up to seven days a week without losing unemployment benefits for that week as long as you work 30 hours or less and your gross pay is $504 or less. However, the maximum number of hours you can work without a reduction in unemployment benefits is 10. In New York State, if you work 11 to 16 hours per week, your benefits will be reduced by 25%. If you work from 5 to 9 p.m., your unemployment benefits will be reduced by 50% and if you work from 10 to 30 p.m., your benefits will be reduced by 75%. If you work more than 30 hours per week, you will not be entitled to benefits.

In Texas, however, partial unemployment benefits for part-time workers are calculated differently. For example, you can only earn up to 25% of your weekly benefit amount, otherwise your benefit will be reduced for that week.

So if your weekly allowance is $400, you cannot earn more than $100 a week in a part-time job without losing part of your weekly allowance. For example, if you earn $125, your weekly benefit will be reduced by the amount over 25% of your weekly benefit — in this case, $25. And if you earn more than your weekly benefit amount plus 25%, in this case $500, you will not qualify for benefits that week.

Unemployment benefits are a temporary solution

In most states, unemployment benefits can only be applied for a maximum of 26 weeks or half a year. You are expected to actively seek full-time employment while receiving benefits. Additionally, each state has its own rules for maintaining weekly eligibility.

However, if you think earning income from a part-time job plus your weekly benefits might help you make ends meet more easily, check your state’s rules for unemployment insurance benefits for workers. part-time to learn more.

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Cynthia Measom contributed reporting for this article.

This article originally appeared on How to Return to Work and Keep Unemployment Benefits

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