The Department of Labor and Regulation is now accepting claims for Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) which allows for an additional 13 weeks of benefits at the end of the regular 26 weeks of state unemployment benefits.
Workers who became unemployed as a direct result of COVID-19 may qualify for this unemployment assistance provision provided under the CARES Act. PEUC became payable for the week ending April 4, 2020, and ends the week ending Dec. 26, 2020.
“You may be eligible if you have established a claim with a benefit year that ended after July 1, 2019, and you have exhausted all 26 weeks of state benefits or your benefit year has expired,” said state Labor and Regulation Secretary Marcia Hultman. “You should file a new claim at RAclaims.sd.gov.”
The weekly benefit amount under PEUC is the prior weekly benefit amount plus the additional $600 weekly payment provided for under Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC).
“PEUC claimants must file a weekly request for payment each week to receive benefits, even though the work search requirement is currently waived,” said Secretary Hultman. “You cannot file this request until the week is over on Saturday at midnight.”
PEUC benefits are 100% federally funded, as are the implementation and ongoing administrative costs. Employers will not be charged for any benefits paid under a CARES Act program.
Attempts to collect unemployment benefits after quitting a job without good work-related cause is considered fraud. The CARES Act specifically provides for serious consequences for fraudulent cases including fines, confinement and an inability to receive future unemployment benefits until all fraudulent claims and fines have been repaid.