Governor Tim Pawlenty authorized Minnesota’s participation in the Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) Program. This federally funded program can provide up to 13 additional weeks of unemployment benefits to workers who have exhausted their regular state unemployment benefits.
Under the EUC Program, individuals who were unemployed the week beginning July 6, 2008; may apply for benefits the week of July 14. The EUC Program expires on June 30, 2009. Learn how to apply for unemployment in nc here.
Not all applicants who exhaust regular state benefits will qualify for this federally funded extension. Federal law requires a certain level of past earnings in order to qualify for the extension, an amount well in excess of the amount necessary to qualify for regular state benefits. Approximately ten percent of applicants who exhaust state benefits will not meet the past earning requirement necessary to qualify for the federally funded extension. Additionally, federal law requires that if at any time an applicant qualifies for regular state benefits, they must apply for and collect those state benefits.
The Department will be notifying approximately 50,000 Minnesotans who may potentially be eligible for this extension. A number of these individuals will have already found employment and will not be eligible. Nonetheless, the unemployment insurance program workload is expected to double in one week. It is expected this increase in workload to have a substantial impact on the number of telephone calls received. Currently, unemployment insurance staff are handling over 2,000 operator-assisted telephone calls per day. While the wait time to speak with an operator currently averages less than two minutes, it is expected that will increase dramatically at least for a few weeks. Your patience is requested over this critical period. Most applicants will not find it necessary to speak with an operator, and will use the online system at www.uimn.org. The automated phone system is 651-296-3644 and the toll-free number is 1-877-898-9090.