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What benefits can you get in New York? Tax credits, unemployment insurance...

New York State provides a variety of programmes, for everything from nutritional support to legal assistance, but how can you apply for the benefits?

New York State provides a variety of programmes, for everything from nutritional support to legal assistance, but how can you apply for the benefits?

On 6 September, an estimated 800,000 New Yorkers lost out on a vital form of financial relief that had been in place throughout the pandemic. The additional unemployment benefits had provided support for those who had lost their jobs during the pandemic, but after 17 months it was allowed to expire.

The programme had provided weekly payments to supplement the regular state-funded benefits, which were limited and deemed insufficient to cope with the number of people out of work due to covid-19. However, there are still financial mechanisms in place to provide support for New York residents…

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Unemployment Insurance in New York

As is the case in all states, New York offers a regular unemployment insurance (UI) programme which provides weekly payments for residents. To be eligible in New York, you need:

  • To have worked in the state of New York within the last 18 months
  • To be actively seeking work and to have kept a record of that effort
  • To have received sufficient income in your previous role to qualify
  • A valid Social Security Number
  • A Government-issued ID card

For full information on the eligibility requirements for UI in New York and to determine if you qualify, use the online Am I eligible? tool.

In New York, as is typical across most states, the UI payments are capped at 26 weeks for as long as you are unemployed. All unemployment benefits are considered an income for taxation purposes, meaning you can be taxed on the payments in your federal, state and city tax returns.

New York State offers specific programmes for a range of beneficiaries

The UI is the most widely accessed form of benefits, but the state also offers a variety of programmes to provide financial support for all manner of situations. The state’s myBenefits pre-screening tool allows residents to input their personal information to see what forms of benefits they are able to claim.

This covers the following provisions:

  • Support for the cost of buying food
  • Temporary Assistance (TA)
  • Special tax credits
  • Home Energy Assistance
  • Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP)
  • Various Health Insurance policies at a reduced or entirely free rate
  • WIC - Women, Infants and Children
  • Uninsured Care Program

There is also a suite of benefits and services available specifically to older New Yorkers, which provide everything from legal assistance to nutritional support. The online portal will take about ten minutes to use and provides access to a whole host of benefits programmes and support schemes for you and your family.