Federal Pandemic Unemployment Programs Ending

In accordance with Governor Brian Kemp and Commissioner Mark Butler’s plan for reemployment and economic recovery, effective June 27, 2021, Georgia will no longer participate in the following federal unemployment programs enacted through the CARES Act and the American Rescue Plan Act: Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), and Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC). The last payable week for federal programs will be the week ending date of June 26, 2021. All eligible payments under applicable federal programs for week ending dates on or before June 26, 2021 will continue to be processed and issued to qualified individuals.

Earnings Allowance
Unemployment benefits are paid on a weekly basis. The Emergency Rule which increased the earnings allowance to $300 for week ending dates on or after March 29, 2020 will end June 26, 2021. The earnings allowance will be $150 for weeks ending on or after June 27, 2021. Claimants can earn up to $150 per week without negatively affecting his/her weekly benefit amount (WBA). Any amount over $150 will be deducted dollar for dollar from the weekly entitlement amount.

Benefits Charging
Contributory employers were relieved of unemployment benefit charges for claims filed for individuals who were unemployed or partially unemployed due to COVID-19. Effective June 26, 2021, the relief for unemployment benefit charging will end regardless of the reason for unemployment. Unemployment benefits paid for weeks ending on or after June 27, 2021 will be charged to the most recent employer under the law section OCGA 34-8-43.

Employer Filed (Partial) Claims
Partial Claims (Rule 300-2-4.09) will be effective June 27, 2021. Employers will only be allowed to submit six (6) consecutive weeks of partial claims with no earnings. Individuals that are unemployed more than six (6) consecutive weeks will be considered to be separated and subsequent claims filed will not be processed or paid. In such cases, employers are encouraged to convert claims from partial claims to individual-filed claims to allow the individuals to request their own weekly benefits and report gross earnings if they work. You can find more information on the claims conversion program on our website at dol.georgia.gov under Spotlights.

Job Refusals and Work Search Requirements
Partial claims should not be filed when an employee fails to work all available hours during the week. Employers should report job refusals online for employees who refuse to report or return to work or an offer of work at dol.georgia.gov and select Report UI Fraud & Abuse. Beginning June, 27, 2021, individuals requesting unemployment benefits must actively seek work and maintain a record of their work search activities.

Reporting New Hires
Federal and State law requires employers to report newly hired and re-hired employees in Georgia to the Georgia New Hire Reporting Center within 20 days of their hire date. Please go to ga-newhire.com for more information about reporting new hires including reporting online and other reporting options.

Recruit New Employees
The Georgia Department of Labor can help you find the ideal candidates for your job opportunities. Access EmployGeorgia.com to easily manage your job openings and talent pool in one place. For personalized assistance, complete an Employer Request for Contact Form at https://dol.georgia.gov/employer-email-us-form.

Georgia Department of Labor

*If you would like additional information on this topic or have HR / Payroll questions, please contact us info@sullivangrouphr.com

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