On November 6, 2009, President Obama signed legislation that extends unemployment benefits for 14 weeks in all states and 20 weeks in states that have 8.5% unemployment or higher. In New York, where I live, the unemployment rate currently stands at 8.9%, so New Yorkers are eligible for the 20-week extension. That extension now allows the unemployed of some states, including NY, to collect up to 99 weeks of benefits.

One drawback of the legislation is that those who lost unemployment benefits since the last extension was exhausted – about four weeks ago – will not be eligible to collect benefits for those missed weeks. It’s important to know that if you did lose your benefits during that four-week period, you will have to reapply for the benefits extension.

If you live in a state other than NY, take a look at the BLS report to see your state’s latest reported unemployment rate, or visit “Where does your state rank?”  to use an interactive map. A static version of the map is presented below:

The New York Times has an FAQ article that answers some unemployment extension questions:Extended Unemployment Benefits: F.A.Q.

For additional information about NY unemployment, see: How long can you collect unemployment benefits in New York?




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