Category Archives: COVID-19

Idaho’s Standard Unemployment Insurance Tax Rate Drops Approximately 18% for 2021

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Dec.18 2020
Media Contacts: Georgia Smith, Georgia.Smith@labor.idaho.gov or Darlene Carnopis, Darlene.Carnopis@labor.idaho.gov

Idaho employers will see a roughly 18 percent decrease in unemployment insurance tax rates for 2021.

The state’s new employer rate remains at 1.0 percent – the lowest rate allowed by federal conformity requirements.

“Thanks to Governor Little approving a $200 million transfer of CARES Act funding to keep the Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund whole, most Idaho businesses will see a decrease in their tax rate for 2021,” said Jani Revier, Idaho Department of Labor director. “This move by the governor allows Idaho to keep UI tax rates low in the coming year and will help business owners as they navigate through these difficult times,” Revier said.

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FAQs for Unemployment Claimants about the End of the CARES Act Programs

Question: I hear Congress approved extending unemployment benefits and other stimulus programs.

Answer: Congress has passed legislation to extend the CARES Act programs that affect unemployment benefits. Now that it has been signed by President Trump, states will be informed about how to implement the program. Until then, we have no additional details and cannot answer your phone calls regarding the extension. We will post any updates on our FAQs and website as they become available. Please continue to submit your weekly reports.

Q: I hear that the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program is ending.

A: You are correct, unemployment insurance programs and extensions funded by the federal CARES Act expired Dec. 26, 2020, including Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC).

Q: How do I know if I am receiving unemployment insurance funded by the Federal CARES Act?

A: PEUC, or extended benefits program, adds 13 weeks to exhausted unemployment benefits. If you applied for extended benefits on the Claimant Portal, you’ll see confirmation that your extended benefits application was approved on the Claimant Portal home page under Extended Benefits.

PUA is for self-employed, low wage earners or workers with denied issues who were unemployed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Individuals who are primarily self-employed uploaded tax information to the Claimant Portal to determine monetary eligibility.

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Federal CARES Act Unemployment Insurance Programs End Dec. 26

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Dec. 9, 2020
Media Contacts: Georgia Smith, Georgia.Smith@labor.idaho.gov or Darlene Carnopis, Darlene.Carnopis@labor.idaho.gov

The Idaho Department of Labor reminds claimants that federal CARES Act unemployment insurance programs expire Dec. 26.

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), unemployment for self-employed, low wage earners and workers with denied issues, and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), an extension that adds weeks to exhausted unemployment benefits, are the two programs set to expire.

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Idaho’s Economy Leads Recovery from Coronavirus

As of October, Idaho has recovered faster than most other states from the sudden, enormous economic losses caused by the coronavirus shutdowns in March and April. Idaho’s long-term population and economic growth gives it strong upward economic momentum. In addition, the shutdowns in the state at that time did not as severely restrict economic activity as it did in many other states.

Despite Idaho’s relative success, it’s not back to normal, and 26,400 more Idahoans were unemployed in October than in February, according to seasonally adjusted labor force statistics from the Idaho Department of Labor. In the uncertain atmosphere caused by COVID-19 and a global economic slowdown, it’s likely that restoring all the jobs lost during the pandemic will take several months. Continue reading

Idaho’s Unemployment Continued Claims Increase 3 Percent

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Dec. 3, 2020
Media Contacts: Craig Shaul, Craig.Shaul@labor.idaho.gov or Salvador Vazquez, Salvador.Vazquez@labor.idaho.gov

The number of Idahoans who filed a continued claim for regular state unemployment insurance benefits increased 3 percent for the week ending Nov. 28 to 9,245, up 452 more than the previous week. The four-week moving average for continued claims increased from 8,343 for the week ending Nov. 21 to 8,623.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits totaled 3,991 for the week ending Nov. 28, down by 741 claims, while the four-week moving average increased by less than a percent to 4,698.

An increase in initial claims and continued claims for regular state benefits is normal for November, December and January due to the ongoing seasonality of Idaho’s economy. Claims related to COVID-19 may disrupt or exacerbate this normal seasonal pattern.

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Continued Claims for Unemployment Benefits Increase Slightly

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Nov. 19, 2020
Media Contact: Craig Shaul, Craig.Shaul@labor.idaho.gov or Salvador Vazquez, Salvador.Vazquez@labor.idaho.gov

The number of Idahoans who filed a continued claim for regular state unemployment insurance benefits increased two percent for the week ending Nov. 14 to 8,310, up 167 more than the previous week. The four-week moving average for continued claims increased slightly – from 8,127 for the week ending Nov. 7 to 8,150.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits totaled 5,060 for the week ending Nov. 14, up by 52 claims, while the four-week moving average increased by 11 percent to 4,462.

An increase in initial claims and continued claims for regular state benefits is normal for November, December and January due to the ongoing seasonality of Idaho’s economy. Claims related to COVID-19 may disrupt or exacerbate this normal seasonal pattern.

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Idaho’s Unemployment Continued Claims Hold Steady

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Nov. 13, 2020
Media Contact: Craig Shaul, Craig.Shaul@labor.idaho.gov or Salvador Vazquez, Salvador.Vazquez@labor.idaho.gov

The number of Idahoans who filed a continued claim for unemployment insurance benefits was unchanged for the week ending Nov. 7 with 8,143, only 19 more than the previous week. The four-week moving average for continued claims decreased slightly – from 8,187 for the week ending Oct. 31 to 8,127.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits totaled 5,008 for the week ending Nov. 7, increasing by 1,089 claims, while the four-week moving average was up by 10 percent to 4,021.

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Idaho’s Unemployment Continued Claims Tick Up Slightly

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Nov. 5, 2020
Media Contact: Craig Shaul, Craig.Shaul@labor.idaho.gov or Salvador Vazquez, Salvador.Vazquez@labor.idaho.gov

The number of Idahoans who filed a continued claim for unemployment insurance benefits increased 1 percent for the week ending Oct. 31 to 8,124, ending 25 consecutive weeks of declines. The four-week moving average for continued claims fell by 3 percent – down from 8,442 for the week ending Oct. 24 to 8,187.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits totaled 3,919 for the week ending Oct. 31, increasing by 57 claims while the four-week moving average was up by 7 percent to 3,648.

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Idaho’s Unemployment Continued Claims Decrease for 25th Consecutive Week

NEWS RELEASE

For Immediate Release: Oct. 29, 2020
Media Contact: Craig Shaul, Craig.Shaul@labor.idaho.gov or Salvador Vazquez, Salvador.Vazquez@labor.idaho.gov

The number of Idahoans who filed a continued claim for unemployment insurance benefits fell for the 25th consecutive week, dropping 2 percent for the week ending Oct. 24 to 8,024. The four-week moving average for continued claims fell by 5 percent – down from 8,910 for the week ending Oct. 17 to 8,442.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits totaled 3,862 for the week ending Oct. 24, increasing by 569 claims while the four-week moving average was up by 7 percent to 3,407.

The department paid out $6 million in claims during the week ending Oct. 24, up from $5.8 million for the week ending Oct 17. Regular state benefit payouts were $1.8 million, the same as the previous week, but 2.1 times higher than the same week in 2019. Of the CARES Act programs, Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) payments paid out $1.6 million, the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) paid out $2.3 million, up from $2.1 million the previous week, and Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) paid out $.3 million, up $.1 million.

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Unemployment Insurance Identity Fraud Frequently Asked Questions

Question: Are unemployment insurance applications being filed by people who have stolen someone’s identity?

Answer: Yes. Crime rings across the globe are exploiting the COVID-19 crisis by attempting to commit large scale fraud against multiple state unemployment insurance programs. These crime rings possess substantial databases of stolen personally identifiable information which is used to submit a large volume of applications for unemployment benefits. Scammers use the names and addresses of Idaho residents, but then have payments sent to bank accounts in other states or have bank cards mailed to different addresses. The department is working closely with federal law enforcement agencies and the U.S. Department of Labor Office of Inspector General to address fraud.

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