The Federal Cares Act which added up to 13 weeks of extended unemployment benefits is already being utilized in 22 states with another 9 states soon to follow. These extended weeks of benefits along with the extra weekly benefit of $600 (which expire on July 31st) could make it harder for employers to have their employees return to work. However, for employees who refuse to return to work as soon as companies re-open or go back to full staff, employers could appeal and have the charges removed from their account.
Under the new CARES Act responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 13 additional weeks of extended unemployment benefits will be funded via federal Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Assistance (PEUC). The number of unemployment claims being filed has increased substantially and those claims not covered by PEUC will be the responsibility of the employer.
The expectation is that employer’s costs will increase. Each employer will need to ensure that all claims are reviewed and protested; and, that the state is not charging their unemployment account for claims that qualify under PEUC. Furthermore, monthly charge statements and end of the year tax rate notices need to be professionally audited, reviewed, and appealed when mistakes are discovered.
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