COVID & CARES Act: Alabama’s Participation in Extra Federal Unemployment is ending on June 19th & I’m behind on my bills, now what?
This month, our office is focused on helping our clients throughout Alabama work towards financial stability as multiple COVID-19 pandemic assistance programs come to an end. On June 19th, Alabama’s will end its participation in ALL federal unemployment pandemic programs and on June 30th, the national foreclosure moratorium will end as well. Throughout June, we will be discussing these programs, their endings, and how you should prepare and protect yourself if you’re relying on these pandemic financial assistance programs.
Most pressing, is Alabama’s participation in ALL of the federally funded COVID-19 pandemic programs regarding unemployment and the additional compensation and allowances that have been provided throughout 2020 and 2021. Again, Alabama’s participation in the below programs will be effective Saturday, June 19th 2021.
- FPUC (Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation), the program that provides an extra $300 per week in payments to recipients of unemployment compensation.
- PEUC (Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation), the program which allows for unemployment benefits to be extended to those that normally wouldn’t be eligible, such as gig workers, part time workers, or self employed workers.
- PEUC, a program which also allows for unemployment benefits to be extended for a longer period of time, even once regular unemployment benefits for a worker have been depleted.
- MEUC (Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation), a program which gives an additional $100 worth of benefits to certain those who meet the requirements of being a mixed earner. Mixed earners are those who earned $5,000 or more in a year from self employment in addition to collecting regular unemployment benefits, extended benefits, or pandemic emergency unemployment benefits.
To be clear, this is not the end of unemployment compensation. This just means that Alabama will no longer be participating in these additional four federal programs that have been in addition to regular unemployment compensation for the majority of 2020 and 2021. Any claims filed from weeks before and up to June 19th are still planned to be processed and if eligible under the program requirements, will be paid.
In addition to ending their participation in these additional assistance programs, the Alabama Department of Labor will also be reinstating the temporarily paused requirement for applicants and recipients of unemployment benefits to be actively searching for work to remain eligible for those benefits. For those individuals in need of assistance finding employment, there are free job services available to all Alabama residents through the Alabama Career Center System. There are 53 physical locations throughout our state, a listing of those locations and their services can be found here. Their services begin with the resume preparation & editing process and go through the individual job search, application assistance, interview skills and practice and even continue to support participants through vocational and educational training programs, apprenticeships, and on-the-job training programs. This is a great opportunity and resource for anyone having trouble finding work or feeling lost in the job search process after the COVID-19 pandemic.
If you’re a recipient in any of the above unemployment compensation programs and relying on these additional COVID financial assistances to keep yourself and your family and your finances in a stable place – this should be a week to urgently assess your budget and finances. If you’re unsure as to whether you’ll be able to keep your household bills paid without these assistances or are already behind on your vehicle or mortgage payments, we recommend that you call our office at 205-349-1280 and set up a free consultation with Attorney Eric Wilson regarding Chapter 7 or Chapter 13 Bankruptcy so that we can help you keep your property protected. We are here to help!