Who is Eligible to Collect Pandemic Unemployment?
The pandemic unemployment program has ended, but there are still many cases pending in DUA about individuals' eligibility for PUA. In some cases these are people who are still waiting to receive benefits. In others, people collected pandemic unemployment and have received over-payment notices claiming that they should not have collected.
In both scenarios, it is important to understand who should have been eligible for pandemic unemployment.
At the beginning of the pandemic, eligibility was broadly defined as "individuals who are unable to work because of a COVID-19-related reason but are not eligible for regular or extended unemployment benefits."
At the end of 2020, Congress passed the Continued Assistance Act, which required proof of prepandemic employment or self-employment that was impacted by COVID. In other words, you now have to show you had income from some source before COVID that you were prevented from earning because of COVID. Massachusetts DUA issued a June, 2021 deadline (later extended to July) for submission of this proof, stating that if proof was not received any payments after December 27, 2020 would be discontinued and/or considered over-payments.
Learn more here about pandemic unemployment in Massachusetts.
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