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I was working PRN (as needed) on a regular weekly basis, but it was lessening prior to COVID-19. In anticipation, in early February 2020 I accepted (signed contract) for a new part time job with start date of 3/30/20 in a new therapy department in a senior living community. The therapy department was to open 3/30/20 also in this community. Because of COVID -19 the start date is being pushed back (specific date not given). In the meantime I am not working or getting paid, my PRN (as needed) employment has gone to nil since mid March. Which is partly why I took a regular part time job to have an income I needed. So can I apply for unemployment or what are my options? I had plans to be working/having income, but due to a pandemic it's on hold, Thank you! Any input is appreciated!

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So can I apply for unemployment or what are my options?

Contact your state's unemployment office. They are the only ones who can determine your eligibility.

Or just apply. They will either accept or reject your application.

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    @Linda Edmonds, And if they don't answer you right now (which is very likely), don't wait and apply anyway. If you apply now, the worst that can happen is that they deny your claim, even after hearing your explanation. – Stephan Branczyk Apr 2 '20 at 18:37
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You don't say which state you're in, but don't wait until you're able to get someone from EDD on the phone. File for unemployment now. The only downside is that they say no, so there is really no downside to applying now.

In my state, COVID-19 can be listed as a reason. If your former employer fights your claim by saying you quit, you may have to explain the situation in your appeal. With that said, if you have a good relationship with your former employer, you may want give them a call and tell them why you've just filed for unemployment.

Also, you may want to file your taxes for 2019. In my state, EDD bases its calculations on the unemployment contributions your employer(s) made during the last 18 months. That being said, if you didn't receive a W2 and are self-employed, the government probably didn't receive contributions and most likely doesn't have a lot of your tax information to cross-reference with.

Also in the case of the $1,200/$500 economic impact payment for adult/child, which is a separate thing than unemployment, the IRS says it will only send checks to those who have declared their taxes for either year 2019 or year 2018. And for those that have entered their banking information for refunds, it will go even faster for them since they will get the money automatically deposited into their account. For that reason, the IRS recommends you declare your taxes even if you're below the normal threshold to be required to.

  • Stephan, could you elaborate on how it works if you are 1099, does that qualify for unemployment in your state or any state? – Daniel Apr 6 '20 at 14:00
  • @Daniel, This topic deserves a completely new question. On here or on money.stackexchange.com (I have no idea which one.). And please specify your state when you ask it. It's a lot easier when you specify which state you're in. – Stephan Branczyk Apr 6 '20 at 20:10

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