Help is available.
Have you lost your job due to the Coronavirus health emergency?
Amid the health crisis, many businesses have suspended operations or closed, and millions are facing unemployment. The State of California has expanded its safety net programs to support workers in these troubling times.
Here is a LINK to the Employment Development Department website where you can apply for:
- Unemployment Insurance: Click HERE
-If your child’s school is closed, and you have to miss work to be there for them.
-If your employer has reduced your hours or shut down operations due to COVID-19.
- Disability Insurance: Click HERE
-If you’re unable to work due to having or being exposed to COVID-19.
- Paid Family Leave: Click HERE
-If you’re unable to work because you are caring for an ill or quarantined family member with COVID-19
Who can apply?
- Sick or quarantined
- Reduced work hours
- Totally or partially unemployed
- Unemployed through no fault of your own
- Physically able to work
- Available for work
- Ready and willing to accept work immediately
- Actively looking for work
I am a contract employee. Do I qualify for EDD?
- Yes. You may have benefits available from EDD employment insurance programs that you or your employer may have paid into over the past 5 to 18 months
- With the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program, the EDD is working quickly on updating the application to serve unemployed Californians who don’t usually qualify for regular UI benefits, including the self-employed.
I am undocumented. Do I qualify for EDD Benefits?
- Unemployment Insurance (UI) —>NO
- To collect UI, workers must be both “able to work” and “available for work”. The EDD has determined that undocumented workers are not, “available for work,” because they are not legally eligible for work.
- Disability Insurance (DI) —>YES
- The California State Disability Insurance (SDI) system is funded by employee contributions. Undocumented workers who have a non-work related disability, and who have contributed money into the state disability system, may be entitled to receive at least as much as they put into the system. If you were paid in cash and not given a pay stub, then you probably are not eligible for DI because it is unlikely that any deductions were made from your wages.
Are EDD benefits taxable?
- Unemployment Insurance (UI):
- Taxable. If you received unemployment compensation during the year, you should receive Form 1099-G, showing the amount you were paid. Any unemployment compensation received must be included in your income. You can choose to have federal income tax withheld.
- Disability Insurance (DI):
- If you leave work because of a disability and receive DI, those benefits are not taxable. However, if you receive UI, become disabled, and begin receiving DI, those DI benefits are considered a substitute for UI, and are taxable up to your UI maximum benefit amount.
- Paid Family Leave (PFL):
- Taxable. PFL benefits are considered a type of unemployment compensation and are taxable.
What documents do I need to have ready to apply for benefits?
- Client’s Information:
- Name (including prior maiden names), birthdate, full mailing address, phone number, Social Security Card (Number and Name Written on Social Security Card), Driver’s License Number, Alien Registration number / Employment Authorization Document (if you’re not a U.S. Citizen) and its expiration date.
- Last Employer’s Information:
- Name of Company (Appear on paycheck stub or W-2 form), Physical Address, Phone Number, Supervisor’s Name, Total Gross Income earned, Last date worked, Reasons why working reduced hours or no longer employed.
- Employment History:
- Name of ALL employer (as appear on paycheck stub or W-2 form) for last 18 Months, Period of employment (Start Date and End Date), Wages earned and how often paid (hourly, semi-weekly, monthly)
- For DI or PFL:
- Medical Certification from physician/practitioner
- Birth Certificate if care recipient is a child
Is the EDD website available in multiple languages?
- English and Spanish.
How long does it take to get my benefits?
- After submitting your claim, allow 10 days for processing. Benefits are paid after a claim has been filed and all eligibility requirements have been met.
- It always takes about three (3) weeks for most Californians to receive their first benefit payment if found eligible. The EDD may request a phone interview for additional information or request additional documents for identity or work verification.
- Unemployed workers will have to answer basic certification questions every two weeks to receive bi-weekly payments as long as they remain eligible.
- After you file your claim, you will be mailed important information about your claim and the UI program. Be sure to read and respond to all requests to avoid payment delays.
- Payments are issued after a correctly completed certification is submitted online, by phone, or by mail every two weeks.
- If all eligibility requirements are met, a benefit payment will be issued to the EDD Debit Card.
I received a notice with $0 benefits. What should I do next?
- Please read our guidelines regarding notices of $0 benefits here.
Are there other benefits I may qualify for?
- The extra $600 per week benefit payment paid by the federal government to workers collecting regular UI benefits. An additional $600 is available for 16 weeks, from 03/29/2020 to 07/25/2020. The payment will be automatically added to regular UI benefits.
- Stimulus payment- Millions of Americans are waiting for their Economic Stimulus Payment. The payment of $1,200 per taxpayer and $500 per child under 17 should come automatically if a return was filed for tax year 2018 and 2019 – no extra steps. Example: A single parent with 2 children will receive $2,200. If a citizen or permanent resident was not required to file a tax return during 2018 and 2019, one can submit a Non-filer request from IRS website. Next, individuals who receive Social Security Administration Benefits or Social Security Disability Insurance will also receive their payment through those respective channels – no extra steps.
Please visit our FreeTaxPrepLA Website for more information.