Pennsylvania Loses Extended Unemployment Benefits

Mark Nootbaar May 3, 2012

With Pennsylvania’s unemployment rate creeping below the federal threshold, the U.S. Department of Labor has informed the state that it can no longer offer Extended Benefits (EB). The last payable week for the long-term unemployed will be May 12th.

Pennsylvania’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.5% in March, down from the 7.6% February rate. The U.S. rate came in at 8.2%. Pennsylvania has been below the U.S. rate for 47 consecutive months.

Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry spokesperson Christopher Manlove said the change in federal status will impact about 30,000 Pennsylvanians. Most Pennsylvanians receiving benefits will not see a change.

“The first 26 weeks of benefits is state funded,” said Manlove, “then there is a group of federally funded tiers of benefits called emergency unemployment compensation.” Pennsylvanians are still eligible for the EUC payments. Only after the EUC payments run out do the EB payments begin.

Manlove says anyone who is just recently unemployed should apply for benefits as usual.

The department will inform by mail those who will be losing their benefits.