For more than a year now, the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked physical and mental havoc around the world. And in the U.S., the pandemic’s impact on the economy has led to many sleepless nights for workers trying to figure out how to support their families, pay bills and keep a roof over their heads.
To stem the tide of the looming economic downturn in March 2020, the American government passed a $2 trillion stimulus bill called the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Among its provisions, the CARES Act empowered states to provide Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which was particularly helpful for contractors, freelancers, gig workers and others who may not qualify for regular unemployment benefits.
One year later, the government passed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which supplemented and expanded several of the provisions laid out in the CARES Act. One of the most important provisions of the American Rescue Plan was the extension of the CARES Act’s expanded unemployment benefits—along with a $300 weekly unemployment supplement—through September 6, 2021. The benefits were originally set to expire on March 31, 2021.
Not All States Bought Into Additional Benefits
However, governors from 26 states announced they would opt out of paying additional unemployment benefits before September 6, 2021, hoping to provide a labor boost that would kickstart their states’ stagnant economies.
And for workers in the other 24 states, where extended unemployment benefits were designated to last until Labor Day, members of President Biden’s administration recently confirmed what many believed would be the case: the extra $300 unemployment benefit would not be extended past September 6.
However, it’s important to note that these workers may also stop receiving benefits a week earlier than expected.
The Reason Unemployment Benefits May End a Week Early
States pay benefits based on a weekly schedule that ends on a Saturday or Sunday, which means the last payable week of benefits will be for the week ending on either September 4 or 5, depending on the state.
So, if you were expecting to collect benefits during the week of September 6, you may want to start planning around the possibility you won’t receive them.
See If You Qualify for Additional Assistance
If you’re facing the end of your unemployment benefits, there are some financial safeguards in place that may help you:
- Extended Eviction Freeze: On August 3, 2021, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a new order temporarily halting evictions in communities where COVID-19 transmission has increased or remained high. Visit the CDC website to see if you qualify.
- Help with Rent: If you’re having trouble making your monthly rent, you can apply to state and local programs that distribute money from the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Emergency Rental Assistance (ERA) program. Here’s how to apply.
- Assistance with Utilities: According to data from the U.S. Census Bureau, more than 38 million Americans were unable to pay an energy bill in full in the last 12 months. You are not alone if you’re struggling to pay bills, and you may even qualify for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). LIHEAP provides federally funded assistance that can help you manage the costs of home energy bills, weatherization, energy-related minor home repairs and more.
- Child Care Resources: If the cost of child care is making it difficult to go back to work, there are several assistance programs that could help you. Visit ChildCare.gov to see the resources that are available in your state.
In addition to those resources, there’s a way to quickly find work without having to write up resumes or prepare for job interviews …
Work Now, Locally
Wonolo offers a fast, easy way to look through thousands of different jobs in a variety of industries. With the easy-to-use Wonolo app, you can scroll through daily or hourly opportunities in warehouse operations, food production, merchandising, and much more.
And once you complete a job, you’ll generally get paid within 1-5 business days, depending on the payment method you choose.
Workers who have signed up on the Wonolo platform (“Wonoloers”) can access vital work experience, accept available jobs based on their own personal schedules, and join virtual communities of workers and businesses in many cities around the U.S., including Dallas, Denver, Nashville, Newark and Seattle, to name just a few.
There is no denying that times are tough right now. Millions of Americans are struggling to make ends meet financially. But if you feel like you’re stuck without options or opportunities, Wonolo can help connect you with both. Visit the Wonolo website to learn more and download the app to find your next opportunity.
*The information provided on this webpage is for general information purposes only and should not be viewed as tax, accounting, legal, financial, or other professional advice. All information provided on the site is provided in good faith, however Wonolo Inc. does not make any representation or warrant of any kind, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, adequacy, validity, reliability, availability or completeness of any information in this article. You should not act upon the information contained in this article without seeking the advice of an accountant, financial planner, or other appropriate professional.