updated: 3/17/2009 12:34:58 PM

Indiana Announces Extended Unemployment Benefits

Inside INdiana Business.com Report

The Indiana Department of Workforce Development says some Hoosiers could be eligible for an additional 13 weeks of unemployment assistance, if their benefits run out. People who qualify for the extension will be notified beginning this week. Hoosiers have to apply for the additional 13 weeks in person at a WorkOne Center.

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Source: Inside INdiana Business

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Press Release

INDIANAPOLIS (March 17, 2009) – The Indiana Department of Workforce Development today announced that eligible Hoosiers who exhaust their state and federal unemployment benefits may be eligible for an additional 13 weeks of unemployment assistance. Those eligible for Indiana’s Extended Benefits will be notified by mail beginning this week.

“This extension marks a last resort for Hoosiers who have exhausted up to 59 weeks of unemployment benefits. It comes with much stricter requirements than previous benefits,” said Teresa Voors, Commissioner of the Indiana Department of Workforce Development.

Only Hoosiers who exhaust their state and federal unemployment benefits and have a UI Benefit end date on or after March 21, 2009 will be eligible for this program. Unemployment recipients can check their UI Benefit end date on their homepage on the state’s online filing system – Uplink.

Hoosiers must apply for this extension in person at a WorkOne Center. Applications will only be taken Wednesday through Friday (Wed-Saturday in South Bend/Elkhart). Hoosiers must bring the letter informing them of their eligibility, along with proof of identification.

Once enrolled, Hoosiers receiving extended benefits will be subject to much stricter regulations, including:

Must apply for three jobs per week and maintain a work search log
Work search waivers are no longer available
Must accept any work offer they can physically perform

“Hoosiers receiving this benefit must accept any job offer,” said Voors. “Failure to apply for at least three jobs per week or refusing a job that pays at or above the minimum wage will result in the person forfeiting the remainder of their benefits.”

According to state law, extended benefits automatically activate when the 13 week average of Indiana’s insured unemployment rate, the percent of Hoosiers receiving state unemployment from the entire pool of covered workers, exceeds five percent. It will automatically deactivate and immediately terminate all payments when the 13-week average rate falls below 5%. Please note the insured unemployment rate is not the same figure as the Unemployment Rate.

Approximately 3,400 Hoosiers will immediately qualify for extended benefits with an additional 2,000 Hoosiers qualifying each subsequent week. The federal government will pay 100 percent of the cost of this program in 2009. If still active, Indiana will pay 50 percent of program costs in 2010. Fourteen other states and Puerto Rico have activated their extended benefits program. Indiana last utilized extended benefits in April 1983.

Source: Indiana Department of Workforce Development

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