Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC)

Overview

Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) is a program under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act of 2020 which provides unemployment insurance benefits to those individuals who have exhausted their state unemployment insurance entitlement.  It is funded by the federal government, not by state unemployment taxes paid by employers. 

On Dec. 27, 2020, President Trump signed into law the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) of 2021, reauthorizing and extending the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program, and the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program.  The CAA also created the Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC) program.  IWD has received the implementing guidance from the United States Department of Labor (USDOL), and is now working on the extensive system programming needed to distribute payments to eligible claimants.

PEUC:  Now available through March 13, 2021, or for up to 24 total weeks of eligibility, whichever comes first.  The additional 11 weeks can only be paid as of Dec. 27, 2020, with the first eligible payments set for the week ending Jan. 2, 2021.    The additional 11 weeks have not yet been implemented in Iowa for those not previously enrolled in PEUC with a balance remaining after payments were issued on Dec 26th, 2020..  Applications will be processed and finalized following successful implementation of the additional weeks.   IWD will automatically enroll all Iowans who are eligible for the PEUC program extension.   There is no need for people to call or reapply for the additional PEUC weeks.  If any information is needed, IWD will contact claimants directly.  

Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC): 

  • Extended unemployment benefits for a claimant who has previously exhausted their benefits.

  • 11 weeks of additional payments beyond the maximum regular unemployment.

  • Individuals are eligible for the same amount of unemployment insurance benefit payment from the previous weeks they received.  

    • Start Date: Week ending January 2, 2021.

    • End date: Now available through March 13, 2021, or for up to 24 total weeks of eligibility, whichever comes first.

FRAUD WARNING!

  • If you knowingly make or cause another person to make a false statement or knowingly fail or cause another person to fail to disclose a material fact and, as a result, receive an amount of Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation to which you are not entitled, you shall be subject to prosecution under 19 section 1001 of title 18, United States Code.

  • An individual found to have committed fraud and subsequently disqualified for a week (or weeks) of unemployment insurance that included a payment of PEUC will be ineligible to receive any additional payments of PEUC in the future following that disqualification.

  • Quitting work without cause to obtain additional benefits under the regular UI program or the CARES Act qualifies as fraud. If you obtain these benefits through fraud, you will be ineligible for any additional benefit payments, must pay back the benefits, and are subject to criminal prosecution under section 1001 of title 18, United States Code.

  • Intentional misrepresentation in the reporting of earnings earned during a given week on one’s continued weekly claim for unemployment insurance can result in finding of fraud, a disqualification from benefits, and an overpayment of benefits, in addition to other penalties and potential criminal prosecution.

Other Important Information for Claimants

  • Child support obligations must be deducted from PEUC payments in the same way that they are to regular unemployment insurance benefits.

  • PEUC payments are taxable. These payments will be included on your 1099G that you receive for the 2020 tax year. Taxes will be withheld from PEUC payments if you have elected to have taxes withheld from your unemployment insurance benefits.

  • Notice to Claimants with a CARES Act Overpayment: A non-fraud overpayment of CARES Act benefits does not necessarily make you ineligible for future CARES Act benefits, even if future benefits may be offset to repay the overpayment. If you have received a notice of a non-fraud overpayment of CARES Act benefits, you are still eligible to apply for future benefits.

 

Information for Employers

  • Employers will not be charged for benefits paid to employees receiving PEUC.
  • If you have offered work to employees as the pandemic ends and your employee refuses to return to work, you must notify Iowa Workforce Development here:  https://www.iowaworkforcedevelopment.gov/job-offer-decline-form-employers
  • Employers should ensure they are current and timely in the filing of their quarterly unemployment insurance reports so their employees receive benefits as quickly as possible.
  • Employers should respond to all Notice of Claims (65-5317) or SIDES notifications if a claim is filed for someone that is not working due to a reason other than COVID-19.
  • Employers should respond to the Notice of Claim (65-5317) or SIDES notification to report any paid sick leave or other paid leave benefits.

 

Information for Employees/Workers Affected by COVID-19

  • If you are not working as a result of COVID-19, you must file an unemployment insurance claim application online in order to receive any forms of unemployment insurance. 
  • Your claim will be reviewed to determine if you are eligible for unemployment insurance benefits.   If you have exhausted benefits and are unable to file a new claim until your current benefit year expires, you will be eligible for up to 13 weeks of additional benefits through the PEUC program.
  • When receiving a payment one PEUC program, you will still need to report your weekly claim each week to be paid.  You will be paid through the same payment method that you were paid on other benefits.
  • When your claim expires, you will be required to file a new claim, even if you have a remaining balance of PEUC.

 

Individual Eligibility

To be eligible for benefits under the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program, individuals must:

  • Have exhausted all state or federal unemployment insurance benefit payments.
  • Be able and available for work and actively seeking work, unless unable to do so due to COVID-19 related reasons.
  • Complete and keep a record of work searches (if work searches are required on your claim).
  • Report any covered earnings earned during the week being claimed. Covered earnings includes, but is not limited to, wages, paid sick time, vacation pay, and holiday pay.
  • Be able and available for work and actively seeking work, unless unable to do so due to COVID-19 related reasons.

Those not eligible for Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation include an individual:

  • That has the ability to telework with pay and would still be working substantially the same number of hours and be receiving the same pay.

  • Who is receiving paid sick leave or other paid leave benefits and those benefits would exceed their weekly amount of PEUC.

  • Who is eligible for another state or federal unemployment program [including unemployment insurance (UI), Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE), Unemployment Compensation for Ex-Servicemembers (UCX), Extended Benefits (EB), and Short-Time Compensation/Voluntary Shared Work (STC/VSW)].

 

What do I need to do?

 

How to file your weekly claim:

All weekly claims (regular UI & Pandemic Extended Unemployment Compensation) can be filed online at  https://www.iowaworkforcedevelopment.gov/file-weekly-continued-claim

HOURS TO SUBMIT A WEEKLY CLAIM

Sunday - 8:00 am to 7:30 pm 

Monday through Friday - 8:00 am - 5:30 pm

For questions specific to your claim, please contact uiclaimshelp@iwd.iowa.gov or call us at 866-239-0843.

 

Individual