Department of Labor & Workforce Development

NJ Labor Dept. Sends $1.3B in FEMA Benefits to 817K Workers, Offers New Round of Payments


November 19, 2020

TRENTON –The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development has distributed nearly $1.3 billion in FEMA benefits to 817,000 workers, and is preparing to issue a new round of these one-time payments to eligible claimants next week.

The $300 payments are a supplemental benefit for claimants who were collecting unemployment during the weeks of Aug. 1 through Sept. 5 due to COVID-19. The maximum benefit is $1,800 and is reserved for those who lost their jobs or saw their hours reduced during the specified period for a COVID-19 reason.

The new round of FEMA payments will be processed Friday and should hit direct deposit accounts and debit cards next Tuesday or Wednesday, depending on the bank. New Jersey will continue to offer these payments until the state has exhausted its budget for the program.

“We will distribute this federal benefit to every eligible claimant in our state who is struggling financially and unable to find new work during the pandemic,” said Labor Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo. “Our top priority remains getting as much financial relief to these residents as possible.”

Claimants must attest that their unemployment or partial unemployment is for a COVID-related reason in order to qualify for the FEMA benefit. To do so, follow these instructions:

Log in to myunemployment.nj.gov through the “check claim status here” link  -- https://lwdwebpt.dol.state.nj.us/ClaimStatus/claimStatus.htm -- scroll down to “self service options” and select the box next to the phrase that starts “To be eligible for the $300 LWA payment…” A pop-up box will appear, allowing you to confirm your selection. After confirmation, the box will be greyed out. This process needs to be done only once; the next time you log in the box will appear unchecked and not greyed out. If you have done this once, we have saved your response; you do not need to complete the process again.

For the week ending Nov. 14, New Jersey saw new unemployment claims decline for the fifth straight week, to 12,986*. This represents a 38 percent drop from the prior week, or nearly 8,000 fewer new claims.

The Labor Department has distributed a total of $19 billion in benefits to New Jersey workers, including just under $300 million last week.

Approximately 1.8 million people have applied for unemployment since mid-March, and 1.47 million have met the monetary requirements for benefits. Of those, 96 percent have received payment.  Here is a look at the number of new unemployment claims received by the department each week:

Click the images below to view them full-size.

Here is a look at the number of new unemployment claims received by the department each week:

Here is a look at the weekly payments made by the Labor Department to eligible claimants:

PUA, PEUC and FPUC are federal programs authorized by Congress under the CARES Act. Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) provides benefits through the end of the year; maximum eligibility is 46 weeks. Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) provides 13 weeks of federal benefits for those who exhaust 26 weeks of state unemployment. Most of them are able to transition to 20 weeks of state Extended Benefits (EB). Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) provided $600/week to everyone eligible for unemployment for the weeks of April 4 through July 25. LWA provided up to six weeks of supplemental benefits through FEMA to people unemployed the weeks of Aug. 1 through Sept. 5 due to COVID, and who were eligible for at least $100 in weekly unemployment.

For more information on state or federal unemployment programs, visit myunemployment.nj.gov.

Anyone looking for work is encouraged to visit New Jersey’s jobs portal -- jobs.covid19.nj.gov.

For national unemployment data, visit https://www.dol.gov/ui/data.pdfFor archived NJ claims data, visit https://oui.doleta.gov/unemploy/DataDashboard.asp.

*This represents the final number for the week ending  Nov. 14. The number listed for New Jersey by the US Department of Labor – 12,287 – is based on advanced reporting.

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