Information to Help You When You Receive Unemployment Insurance Questions

Tuesday, April 07, 2020

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We know that many of DEED's partners are receiving questions related to unemployment insurance in this unprecedented time. We will provide new information every week for you to share with customers about the changing unemployment insurance program. 

This week's updates:

1) Background 

This week, we are taking additional steps to serve the unprecedented number of applicants to our system over the past three weeks – far more than we served in all of 2019. 

  • To put it into perspective, since just March 16 we have seen more than 120,000 more applicants for unemployment than in all of 2019. 
  • More than 90% of new or reactivated applicants since March 16 who have been determined eligible have had their payments processed 

2) Meeting the new demand 

To meet the new demand DEED has taken new steps to help streamline its response to the most common eligibility issues in order to help process application and get payments to applicants more quickly. 

  • We are no longer required to delay benefits for people who are taking vacation, sick pay or personal time off when they apply for unemployment insurance. 
  • This change will also free up many of our staff to help assist other Minnesotans who are navigating this process and ensure more people get benefits as quickly as possible. 
  • This change is authorized under Executive Order 20-29 signed by the Governor today, and will help ensure we are able to immediately get benefits to the folks who need it most right now. 

3) Call lines are open for all applicants 

Call lines are now open for general questions Monday – Thursday between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. Customers needing help with their applications can call Friday between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. There will likely still be long wait times on the phone so direct them to uimn.org whenever possible. 

4) There are additional resources available for other languages 

5) We don't have all the answers on the CARE Act implementation yet

We are still waiting for guidance from the Federal Government on implementation of these additional benefits. What we do know can be found online at: https://www.uimn.org/applicants/needtoknow/news-updates/cares-act.jsp

6) Additional things to remember 

The UI website - uimn.org - is still the best place for resources and answers to the most common questions. Many questions from UI applicants have been answered on the website, as well. Feel free to open this up when speaking to applicants and relay the information to them. More information is also available on the UI applicants need to know page. 

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