In light of the declared national emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the President authorized the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide up to $44 billion from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Disaster Relief Fund for lost wage payments.
Lost Wages Assistance program is administered by states and territories through a grant agreement with FEMA. FEMA does not make these payments directly to individuals. The states and territories will distribute the funds through their unemployment insurance systems as a supplemental payment.
To apply, states must submit:
Once approved, FEMA will obligate funds to the state. The states will then administer the lost wages payments through their unemployment office. States may provide supplemental lost wages payments to eligible individuals retroactively, beginning with the week of unemployment ending August 1, 2020. Visit FEMA’s website for a list of approved states.
FEMA grants for lost wages supplemental payments will continue until the earlier of:
If you have recently experienced a major disaster – Benefits.gov is here to help. Compare your eligibility for over 1,000 government benefits using the Benefit Finder, an online questionnaire, to discover assistance programs you and your family may be eligible for and learn how to apply. Browse the Employment and Career Development category to find more resources such as research opportunities, unemployment assistance, and veteran employment.
There are many programs available to you and your family if you find yourself facing financial hardship. For example, the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program provides grant funds to states and territories to provide families with financial assistance and related support services. Since the outbreak of the coronavirus, the federal government enacted the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. The CARES Act temporarily enhances and expands unemployment insurance benefits through several key programs, including:
Visit Coronavirus.gov and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to stay informed on the federal response to the pandemic. To find other disaster-related resources, visit DisasterAssistance.gov.
Benefits.gov also publishes helpful, timely news articles to keep people informed about government benefit programs. To stay up-to-date on benefit program information, subscribe to the Compass Newsletter or follow Benefits.gov on Twitter and Facebook.