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House Covid relief bill extends unemployment benefits by 5 months, pays extra $400 a week

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Unemployment benefits extended

Those programs include Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for self-employed, gig and other workers who don’t qualify for state-level assistance; and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation, which pays extra weeks of state benefits to the long-term unemployed.

The bill would offer PUA recipients a maximum 74 weeks of benefits, up from 50. PEUC recipients would get up to 48 weeks instead of 24.

Extra $400 a week

Benefit recipients would also get an extra $400 a week through Aug. 29.

State unemployment benefits replaced about 38% of pre-layoff wages for workers, on average, in the third quarter last year, according to the Labor Department. An extra $400 a week would raise that wage replacement to 86%.

The bill would also provide an extra $100 a week for certain self-employed workers. Workers are eligible for this if they make at least $5,000 in net self-employment income and aren’t receiving benefits through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program.

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