HARRISBURG, PA — A $300-a-week federal unemployment benefit has ended in Pennsylvania before it officially began.
Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry Secretary Jerry Oleksiak said Thursday the Federal Emergency Management Agency notified the state that the federal Lost Wages Assistance program ended in Pennsylvania as of Sept. 5. The program was to provide an additional $300 weekly benefit to unemployed workers.
Late last week, Pennsylvania officials said the program was to begin in the state on Sept. 14.
The state said it will pay eligible claimants retroactively for weeks between Aug. 1 and Sept. 5.
“We will continue making these payments until the funding we’ve already received from FEMA for this program is depleted. I urge anyone who is partially or fully unemployed because of COVID-19 and hasn’t yet applied for LWA benefits to do so right away," Oleksiak said.
Eligible claimants need to apply for Lost Wages Assistance benefits. Claimants who have already applied could begin receiving the extra $300 weekly benefit as early as Sept. 14.
"However, it’s extremely important to note that not everyone will receive payment on Sept. 14. The actual date you receive your payment will depend on factors outside of L&I’s control, such as how long it will take your bank to process the payment, etc," the agency said in an announcement.
Pennsylvania was accepted into the federal lost-wages program in late August, after the additional $600 federal unemployment benefit previously approved by Congress ended.