CORONAVIRUS

Unemployment payment: why did I get only $300?

It’s been over a month since unemployed workers last received the $600 weekly federal government supplement to their state benefits, which was approved under the CARES Act.

USA
Unemployment payment: why did I get only $300?
LEAH MILLIS REUTERS

In late-March President Donald Trump signed the CARES Act stimulus relief package, which included a measure to give out-of-work Americans an extra $600 a week in federal unemployment benefits on top of their regulat state benefits.

Since that benefit expired at the end of July, Congress has been trying to negotiate a new coronavirus releif package which would likely include provisions for another federal unemployment benefit. 

But so far, Democrats and Republicans have been unable to come to an agreement on a new package.

Trump’s executive order

Amid the impasse in Congess, President Donald Trump signed a series of executive orders back in early August, one of which was to extend unemployment benefits, but at a reduced rate of $400 a week.

Under Trump’s executive order, the federal government would cover $300 of this unemployment boost and states would be responsible for the remaining $100. When the news broke many governors stated that it was impossible for states to cover the extra $100 and for that reason many people are only receiving the extra $300 a week.

So far these states have not applied or will not receive the federal approval to offer the extra money in unemployment benefits: District of Columbia (will apply), Kansas (will apply), Nebraska (will apply), New York (will apply) and South Dakota (will not apply).