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COVID-19 Illinois Unemployment

Expanded Unemployment Insurance:
 
NOTE: The River Music Experience is providing the following information as a helpful resource to our music community. Neither the RME nor its staff are legal experts, and nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice.
 
The following information applies to Illinois.
 
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The Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) is now accepting applications for CARES Act benefits. Read the information below to learn more, and to see how to apply.
 
The CARES Act signed into law on March 27 has temporarily expanded unemployment benefits to self-employed and gig-based workers (including musicians) who were previously ineligible.
 
Specifically, according to the --SBE Council’s analysis—( https://sbecouncil.org/2020/03/26/whats-in-the-cares-act-for-small-businesses-the-self-employed-and-gig-workers/ ), Section 2102 of the CARES Act “creates a temporary Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program through December 31, 2020 to provide payment to those not traditionally eligible for unemployment benefits (self-employed, independent contractors, those with limited work history, and others) who are unable to work as a direct result of the coronavirus public health emergency.”
 
IMPORTANT LINKS
COVID-19 and Unemployment Benefits (https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/Pages/COVID-19-and-Unemployment-Benefits.aspx): An overview of unemployment information and eligibility.
 
CARES Act Unemployment Benefits Expansion Package (https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/News%20%20Announcements%20Doc%20Library/Federal-Stimulus-FAQ-April2020.pdf): Information regarding unemployment expansion.
 
 
AM I ELIGIBLE?
Those who are newly eligible under the CARES Act include: self-employed, independent contract workers, gig economy workers, those typically ineligible for state unemployment benefits or who have exhausted benefits.
 
 
HOW MUCH WILL I RECEIVE? FOR HOW LONG?
The recent expansion of Unemployment in response to the coronavirus public health emergency has temporarily expanded the length and maximum dollar amount of benefits.
 
Traditional unemployment benefits are based on your typical previous earnings, and typically only cover a percentage of that, which is different in each state. The CARES Act will add up to $600 per week to the maximum benefit amount for up to four months.
 
Traditional unemployment in Iowa and Illinois ends after 26 weeks. The CARES Act has added 13 weeks of additional time, making the total 39 weeks.
 
 
 
HOW DO I PREPARE TO FILE FOR UNEMPLOYMENT?
The application requires the following information. You should prepare this information now, to make sure you can quickly and accurately submit your application.
-Social Security Number
-Drivers License or State ID
-Name, mailing address, phone number, employment dates, and separation reason for all employers you worked for in the last 18 months
 
And proof of income, which could include any of the following documents:
-2019 1099
-2019 W-2
-2019 Pay stubs
-2020 Pay stubs
 
 
ILLINOIS FILING SCHEDULES
Due to increased demand on services, IDES has implemented the following schedule for online applications:
-Last names beginning with A-M: File on Sundays, Tuesdays, or Thursdays
-Last names beginning with N-Z: File on Mondays, Wednesdays, or Fridays
-If you are unable to file according to the above schedule, Saturdays are available for anyone who could not file during their allotted time
 
 
WHEN AND HOW DO I FILE?
Step One: File for unemployment insurance
Visit this link to submit your initial claim: https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/aboutides/Pages/10%20Things%20You%20Should%20Know.aspx
 
Step Two: Certify for weekly benefits
To continue receiving unemployment benefits, you must certify your benefits every two weeks. This link has more information: https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/Pages/Certify_Weekly_Benefits.aspx
 
For a full description and additional information, visit this page: https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/individuals/UnemploymentInsurance/Pages/default.aspx
 
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NOTE: The River Music Experience is providing the following information as a helpful resource to our music community. Neither the RME nor its staff are legal experts, and nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice.