I'm technically "back to work": does this mean PUA still applies?
May 1, 2020 11:58 AM   Subscribe

I'm still waiting for my state (Illinois) to open up the PUA portal, which it says will do so by May 11th. I read that PUA is retroactive. I was ineligible for regular state unemployment due to just moving here in 2020. My last day of work was 3/15, and work just started paying me today through the PPP loan. Does anyone have experience or know if I'd still be able for retroactive PUA payments (from time of furlough to now) despite technically being unemployed again? I will apply as soon as the portal is up but this isn't clear. I meet all other criteria and am definitely eligible under PUA. I am aware I can't receive unemployment starting from this week. Thanks!
posted by signondiego to Work & Money (4 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Every indication when filling out my PUA is that you will receive pay retroactively to the date that you state as your last day of work. This was Washington State. It also instructed me to make weekly claims for those weeks and also to keep filing claims while I wait for an approval of the PUA.
posted by humboldt32 at 12:26 PM on May 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Right, I got that part about it being retroactive to your last day of work. But I've technically now started work since I've gotten paid. But as mentioned, cannot apply for PUA due to my state being behind on it. So it's less clear if the PUA will be retroactive for the month that I didn't work. I can't find any information on getting PUA if you've since gone back to work.
posted by signondiego at 12:29 PM on May 1, 2020

Best answer: In Wisconsin, when the portal finally opened, the form questions included ones like "Which date did COVID-19 begin interfering with your work?" and "Have you returned to work?" as well as text boxes that allowed a couple hundred characters of explanation. My partner's situation was/is more convoluted than yours, and they were still able to feel like they were giving fundamentally accurate/truthful answers. Wisconsin's site is very clear that all the PUA applications will be processed individually by a human, so we're reasonably confident that eventually such a person will make it so the correct benefits are distributed. (Emphasis on "eventually," to judge by my regular unemployment application that's still pending from March...)
posted by teremala at 1:13 PM on May 1, 2020

Best answer: FAQ pdf link from the Illinois Dept of Employment Security

Quoting: "In Illinois, every individual who is unemployed or underemployed should file a claim for unemployment benefits, even if they believe they are not covered by the unemployment system."

"How will this affect Illinois unemployment benefits?
Individuals receiving unemployment benefits beginning the week of March 29, 2020, will receive an additional $600 each week above what they would receive in regular unemployment benefits until the week ending on July 25, 2002. Pursuant to the federal legislation, this $600 will not be retroactively applied to unemployment claims that arose prior to March 29, 2020. "

As I read this, you will be covered by the PUA from March 29 to today.

This is the "retroactive" part - Congress was at least smart enough to recognize that unemployment systems would be overwhelmed and it would take time for states to ramp up getting money out and processing claims and coming up with ways to build systems to deal with people (like you) who would not ordinarily be eligible but who are now. So definitely file on May 11.
posted by soundguy99 at 1:18 PM on May 1, 2020

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