Topeka – All COVID-19 related federal unemployment programs, as originally authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020, and extended through the Continued Assistance to Unemployed Workers Act (Continued Assistance Act) of 2020 and American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021, will expire on Sept. 4, 2021, as required by federal law.
The following federal unemployment programs are affected:
Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), which provides an additional
$300 weekly payment for any claimant that is eligible for at least $1 of an underlying unemployment compensation.
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which provides benefits for claimants who are unemployed as a direct result of COVID-19 and not eligible for regular unemployment compensation or PEUC, including those who are self-employed or are gig workers.
Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), which provides an extension of benefits after a claimant exhausts regular unemployment compensation benefits.
All claims for federal benefits for weeks of unemployment through the week ending Sept. 4, 2021 will be processed in accordance with guidance from the United States Department of Labor (USDOL). Claimants are encouraged to continue to file weekly claims under these programs through the week ending Sept. 4, 2021 if they continue to be unemployed. If claimants are entitled to benefits from Kansas Department of Labor (KDOL) and their claim is found to be eligible, they will be paid those funds even after the federal programs have expired.
Once the federal benefit programs have ended the only unemployment insurance (UI) program will be regular state funded UI. To qualify for regular UI benefits, claimants must have earned sufficient wages to be monetarily entitled to benefits.
Unemployment Rate Thresholds for Maximum Benefits for Regular UI
HB2196 changed the threshold that determines the maximum number of weeks of UI benefits available to claimants. This change is for all initial claims effective on and after Sept. 5, 2021. If the state’s three-month seasonally adjusted average unemployment rate is less than 5 percent, a maximum of 16 weeks of benefits is available; if the adjusted average is at least 5 percent but less than 6 percent, a maximum of 20 weeks of benefits is available; and if the adjusted average is at least 6 percent, a maximum of 26 weeks of benefits is available.
For further questions regarding federal programs expiring, please utilize the FAQ at www.dol.ks.gov/ui-faqs#unemployment-programs.
Resources for Unemployed Workers
Claimants are encouraged to visit Resources for Unemployed Workers, located on the KDOL website, that provides programs and resources to support claimants in securing food, housing and a new job at www.dol.ks.gov/unemployed-worker-resources.
Since March 15, 2020 KDOL has paid out over 4.8 million weekly claims totaling over $3.1 billion between regular unemployment and the federal pandemic programs. For more information, or to apply for unemployment benefits, go to www.GetKansasBenefits.gov.