PA’s Extended Benefits Program Ends

Jennifer BerrierPennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) Acting Secretary Jennifer Berrier (Credit: Commonwealth Media Services)

HARRISBURG, PA — Department of Labor & Industry (L&I) Acting Secretary Jennifer Berrier stated that Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate has fallen low enough to automatically conclude the Extended Benefits (EB) program effective the claim week ending Saturday, May 15.

Individuals on the EB program will be moved to the federal Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program, which will be in place until the week ending Sept. 4. The change in program does not cause any changes in the filing process or benefit amount.

“The declining unemployment rate is a sign that Pennsylvania’s economy continues to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic,” said L&I Acting Secretary Jennifer Berrier. “For individuals in harder-hit industries, the federal PEUC program will provide assistance as businesses continue to recover.”

The EB program provides additional Unemployment Compensation (UC) benefits to qualified workers when the Insured Unemployment Rate (IUR) reaches a certain threshold. The IUR is a measure of continued weeks claimed as a percentage of UC-covered employment. Once triggered on, EB provides up to 13 additional weeks of benefits for claimants who exhausted their regular unemployment benefits and other extension programs.

Just over 7,000 individuals are filing for benefits on the EB program. These individuals will be moved to the PEUC program beginning Sunday, May 16. The PEUC program will be available to eligible individuals until the week ending Sept. 4.

Pennsylvania’s EB program, which began May 3, 2020, has paid nearly $496 million to eligible individuals. By law, L&I is required to turn off the program and notify the public when the IUR falls beneath the threshold. Individuals receiving benefits through the EB program will also be notified through email or mail.

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