The latest (ARPA) stimulus package was passed by Congress and signed into law by the President Biden on March 11th, 2021. It includes further extensions to pandemic unemployment programs (PUA and PEUC) and an extra $300 weekly FPUC supplementary UI payment. The latest supplementary $300 payment will be paid over 25 weeks starting from week of March 15th, 2021 to September 6th, 2021. This is in addition to the previous extension covering 11 weeks from December 27th, 2020 to March 14th, 2021. Eligible payments will be made retroactively in cases where state unemployment agencies face delays with rolling out system updates to process these payments.
The $300 weekly unemployment payment will be made above and beyond any regular state or enhanced federal unemployment payment and require eligible claimants to certify regularly according to their state UI agency guidelines. Claimants will need to be eligible for at least $1 of an underlying unemployment benefit to receive the $300 supplemental payment under the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program.
You do not need to take any additional action to receive this supplemental payment. States are slowly rolling out these payments for different groups of claimants starting with those already getting regular UI and state extended benefits (active claimants). Those who have exhausted benefits prior to the extensions being rolled out or new claimants will only be able to get payments once their underlying claim is approved.
I will update dates in the table below as states implement these guidelines and start making making actual payments. Please leave a comment if you find updated or incorrect information reflected in the table and I will review/update accordingly. Details on why this payment could be delayed due to PEUC or PUA roll-outs are discussed in this video.
State unemployment departments and agencies will be responsible for disbursing these benefit payments, similar to the $300 LWA and earlier $600 FPUC supplementary unemployment programs. Given the many challenges and various payment issues across states with earlier supplementary UI benefit programs, I expect this to take some time to be rolled out and require retroactive payments to get claimants caught up. So stay tuned and subscribe to get the latest updates. You can also see this $300 FPUC video for more details on this program.
Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) program – Now Expired
The temporary $300 unemployment benefit under the Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) program funding has now been paid in all states who participated in the program. The program expiry date was December 27th, 2020 and this means that any new or retroactive payments under this program will NO longer be paid out going forward. This has been replaced by the new $300 FPUC payment discussed above.
This supplementary payment was a temporary, but much needed benefit for unemployed or underemployed workers who lost the supplementary $600 FPUC weekly payment at the end of July. There was a lot of confusion on when the $300 would actually be paid by state UI agencies which led to the creation of the LWA state tracker table below, which shows the payment status and actual or estimated future date claimants can expect their first weekly unemployment payment, if eligible. You can also see the 1000+ comments from readers that share their experiences around the LWA payment, including some very useful tips if you are facing issues getting your $300 LWA payment.
All states that applied and were approved by FEMA were only initially awarded three weeks of funding – covering the weeks of August 1st, 8th and August 15th. After that, states and territories will need to submit a Lost Wages Additional Week Request one week at a time for funding to pay claims for subsequent weeks. However any additional funding is subject to the $44 billion budget that is available for this program and it is almost certain that funding will run out before the December 27th expiry of this program, unless Congress approves additional funding via a formal UI benefits extension.
In fact, at this stage approved states will only get a maximum of 6 weeks of funding (weeks covering August 1st to September 5th) for the LWA program per recent FEMA guidance to state labor and unemployment agencies that have already made several weeks of payments. Several states which started making the $300 payments earlier than other states have already been notified that their LWA funding allotment has run out and no additional funding beyond will be approved. Note however that some states like Florida will only be applying for and paying 4 weeks of LWA benefits, since they didn’t meet some of the LWA program qualification rules (details here).
Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) State Payment Date and Status
|State||LWA Status||Start Date||Max Weeks||Weekly Amount|
(see estimate details)
|Arkansas||Paid||Sep 12 (up to Oct 2nd)||6||$300|
|California||Paid||Sep 7th (Phase 1)|
Sep 15th (Phase 2)
|Colorado||Paid||From Sep 18th|
|District of Columbia||Paid||From Sep 28th |
|Hawaii||Paid||Sep 23rd |
|Indiana||Paid||Week of Sep 21st||6||$300|
|Kansas||Paid||From Oct 6th |
|Maryland||Paid||Sep 12th (schedule)||6||$300|
|Nebraska||Paid||Sep 18th (First 3 weeks)|
From Sep 20th (remaining payments)
|Nevada||Paying 5th and 6th weeks||From Oct 20th (First 3 weeks)|
From Nov 11 (Last 3 weeks)
(see DETR updates)
|New Hampshire||Paid||Sep 12th||6||$300|
|New Jersey||Paid||From Oct 22nd|
(see more details)
|New Mexico||Paid||Sep 10th||6||$300|
|New York||Paid||Sep 14th||6||$300|
|North Carolina||Paid||Sep 6th (4 weeks)|
Sep 16th (2 weeks)
|North Dakota||Paid||Sep 17th||6||$300|
|Ohio||Paid||From Sep 14th (on PUA)|
From Sep 20th (others)
|Pennsylvania||Paid||Sep 17th (first 3 wk batch)|
Sep 24th (second 3wk batch)
|Rhode Island||Paid||Sep 6th||6||$300|
|South Carolina||Paid||Sep 25th |
(7 to 14 days processing)
|South Dakota||No Payment||Did not enroll||6||-|
|Utah||Paid||Sep 9th to Sep 23rd|
(paying in batches)
|Vermont||Paid||Week of Sep 14th||6||$300|
(see payout details)
|West Virginia||Paid||Sep 16th||6||$400
|Wisconsin||Paid||From Oct 22nd||6||$300|
Payment Start date is when the state actually started processing LWA payments OR is the estimated date of the first payment processing based on available information. Note: Due to bank processing delays, it can take 2 to 4 days after the noted dates for benefits to hit your bank account or debit card. Please see links to more information in the table or your state UI website for specific payment status. If you find any mistakes or have updates, please leave a comment below and I will update table to help others.
What if my state has started making payments, but I don’t see my $300?
Claimants in most states do not need to take any action to receive the new benefits available in this program. The additional benefits will be added automatically for all claimants who are eligible and have certified for the relevant week. Their self-certification will ask them to confirm they were unemployed or partially unemployed due to COVID-19. See more FAQs on this here.
However if your state has started making payments and you haven’t received payments you need to first confirm you are eligible. This means you must be receiving at least $100 in weekly unemployment benefit payments (pre tax and before any other deductions). This includes claimants receiving any type of regular unemployment insurance benefits as well as those receiving PUA and PEUC benefits.
If you are eligible and you have not received a payment in several weeks then you will need to contact your state UI agency to ensure the claim has been processed and is not being held up due to fraud, missing/incorrect payment details or due to a weekly or bi-weekly certification issue.
See more in this article on Why Your $300 Unemployment Has Not Been Paid or Delayed.
My state has been approved and the LWA tracker says payments are being made, but when will I get my payment?
The tracker provides an actual or estimated date for the when the LWA payments start being processed by the state. If a start date has been officially published by the state, you will see the status updated to “paying now.” Otherwise it is estimate based on FEMA guidelines or if confirmed by several sources online. However this date (week start date in many cases) may not be the same as the date the actual UI payment will hit your back account or debit card. The actual date you may see the money could be several days after the official state processing start date and tied to your normal UI payment cycle. You will need to confirm via your UI online portal or state agency for the exact payment date.
Also note the payment date is generally the date when payment starts. In many states, due to volume of people being paid, claims are paid out over several days (in batches, based on SSN or First/Last Name). And given processing by banks to disburse these payments via direct deposit or debit cards can take 1 to 2 days, it may take several days after the first payment date for you to receive your payment.
I got my $900 back payment but no payments after that. Why?
The first state LWA grant approved by FEMA was only for three weeks. Hence the $900 payment (3 x $300) is what most people are seeing first, less any taxes or withholding. Subsequent $300 payments are approved and paid on a week by week basis. This includes retroactive payments which will also be staggered. Rest assured if you are eligible for past weeks you will get your payment.
Also the maximum number of weeks that can be paid under the LWA program is 6, which means the maximum payment in most states is $1800 (or $2400 if the state was paying $400 p/week). After the payment of 6 weeks, you will revert to what you were getting under existing unemployment programs.
I am got my first week of payments but not subsequent weeks.
Kristin asked, “My son just got his first payment for the weeks of 08/23 thru 08/29 and 08/30 thru 09/05. He got the extra $300 for the week of 08/23 – 08/29, but did not get the extra $300 for the week of 08/30 thru 09/05. We are in Texas. Do you know why he got it the first week, but not the second week?
Every week is processed separately by the state UI agency subject to FEMA funding. So you may be seeing some variability due to delays in approval, claim processing and eventual bank/debit card payment.