Alabama Unemployment Extension
Individuals who have exhausted their regular Alabama unemployment benefits may be eligible for additional weeks of benefits through various extension programs. These extension programs provide financial assistance to those who are still unemployed and actively seeking work. The availability and duration of these unemployment extended benefits depend on various economic factors, such as the state’s unemployment rate and federal funding.
High Extended Benefit Program (HEB)
The High Extended Benefit Program (HEB) is a state and federally funded program that provides extended unemployment benefits to Alabama workers who have exhausted their regular unemployment insurance benefits during periods of high unemployment.
This benefit is only activated when the state’s unemployment rate reaches a high threshold. The program provides additional benefits to eligible individuals for up to 20 weeks.
To qualify for HEB benefits, an individual must have exhausted all rights to regular unemployment insurance benefits under state or federal law, and the individual must be able to work, available to work, and actively seeking work.
Currently, there are no high extended benefits available in Alabama. Contact the ADOL for more information about HEB.
Disaster Unemployment Insurance
The Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) program is designed to help Alabama residents who have lost their jobs due to a major disaster, such as a hurricane, flood, or earthquake. To be eligible for DUA, you must meet specific requirements, such as filing an initial application within 30 days of the announcement of assistance availability and being unemployed due to the disaster.
Additionally, self-employed individuals must provide documentation, and certain conditions of unemployment must have occurred as a direct result of the disaster to qualify for DUA. Non-citizens of the United States are not eligible for DUA benefits unless they were legally authorized to work in the country at the time of their services.
Your employer may file partial claims for benefits if you worked but earned less than your weekly unemployment benefit amount. The partial claim must be filed by your employer after the end of the payable week, but within 14 days following the week claimed. If your employer fails to file the partial claims within the specified time period, you are responsible for filing your claim application by telephone.
The program allows you to receive a portion of your unemployment benefits while still working part-time. The amount of the partial benefit is based on the difference between the individual’s weekly benefit amount and their weekly wages earned from part-time work. You can estimate your weekly benefit amount using the Alabama unemployment calculator.
To be eligible for partial benefits, you must meet certain requirements, such as being able and available for full-time work and actively seeking work.
Trade Act Program
The Trade Act Program provides benefits for individuals who have lost their jobs due to competition from imports. These benefits are only available after your regular unemployment benefits are exhausted. If you are eligible for Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA), you will receive notification by letter and can file a claim immediately.
Benefits may include relocation and job search allowances, training assistance, employment services, Health Coverage Tax Credit (HCTC), and Trade Readjustment Allowance (TRA).
To qualify for TRA benefits, workers must enroll in an approved training program or be granted a training waiver within 26 weeks after the certification date of the trade petition.
CARES Act and American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Extended Benefits
During the COVID pandemic, Congress passed several laws allowing unemployment extended benefits after regular benefits were exhausted.
All CARES Act benefits expired in Alabama on June 19, 2021.
Federal Unemployment Compensation (FPUC)
This emergency benefit, commonly known as the stimulus benefit, offered eligible individuals an increase of $600 per week in traditional unemployment insurance benefits for qualifying weeks. Payments were later reduced to $300 under the American Rescue Plan Act. This benefit was only available during the COVID pandemic.
Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA)
The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program in Alabama offers up to 39 weeks of unemployment benefits to individuals who are not eligible for Alabama unemployment insurance.
The program is specifically designed for self-employed individuals, gig economy workers, independent contractors, church employees, nonprofit and government employees, and those who have exhausted their regular and extended benefits.
PUA was created in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in many individuals losing their jobs due to government-imposed shutdowns and restrictions. The program provided financial assistance to those who are not traditionally covered by unemployment insurance programs, ensuring that they could still support themselves and their families during the historic time.
Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC)
Back during the COVID pandemic, individuals who had exhausted their regular unemployment insurance benefits received an additional 13 weeks of unemployment benefits.
The program provided financial assistance to those who are still unemployed after exhausting their normal benefits. PEUC benefits were provided automatically and claimants did not have to apply for them.
Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC)
MEUC benefits helped self-employed workers, and were available from January 02, 2021 – March 13, 2021. The program paid an additional $100 per week in supplemental benefits to individuals who were receiving certain unemployment benefits. Eligible recipients must have received at least $5,000 of self-employment income in the most recent taxable year before applying for unemployment compensation, while also earning regular wages from an employer.