There is new financial hope for the jobless in Columbia County and the thousands of other Oregonians facing unemployment due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Oregon Employment Department is now providing unemployment benefits through the CARES Act Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program.
PEUC is a 13-week extension of Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits for claimants who have run out of regular benefits.
PEUC provides the same weekly amount as a claimant’s regular benefit amount. Individuals receiving PEUC also are eligible to receive the $600 weekly Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation benefit for each eligible week between March 29 and July 25, 2020.
PEUC is retroactive to March 29, 2020, the first payable week of the program, and lasts for up to 13 eligible weeks of benefits through December 26, 2020.
There are two ways to be eligible for PEUC benefits. The first is if someone has used up all benefits from a current claim for regular unemployment benefits, but the period of the claim has not expired, and a person does not have another regular unemployment claim available to them in another state.
The second is if someone was unemployed, ran out of regular unemployment benefits after July 1, 2019, and a person does not have another regular unemployment claim available to them in another state.
Those eligible for regular unemployment benefits are not eligible for PEUC until those other benefits are exhausted.
How to Apply
We cannot accept your application for PEUC until you have run out of benefits, or unless your claim is expired. There are three ways to apply for PEUC:
Online Claim System
If you have exhausted your regular unemployment benefits, your claim has not expired, and you file weekly using our Online Claims System, you will be presented with an option to file for PEUC when you submit your weekly claim for the first week with a $0 balance.
If you select this option, you will automatically be placed into the PEUC program. Make sure you continue filing a claim for benefits each week.
If your claim for regular unemployment benefits already expired and you are eligible for PEUC, you will receive a letter from us instructing you how to complete the PUEC application and how to restart your claim. You can apply using the secure upload.
If you are eligible for PEUC but cannot access our electronic systems you can mail your application. The application is available here on the CARES Act page of our website or by calling 503-947-1563 and leaving a message requesting an application.