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Unemployment Insurance Updates

GEORGIA – Disaster Unemployment Assistance Available, Deadline October 10
Individuals and businesses in Georgia impacted by Hurricane Idalia are now eligible for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) benefits. Applications must be received by October 10, 2023, for businesses and residents in Lowndes, Cook, and Glynn counties.

DUA, which is an unemployment insurance benefit made available after a disaster, is only available to individuals who:
• Have applied for and used all regular unemployment benefits from any state, or do not qualify for unemployment benefits.
• Worked or were self-employed or scheduled to begin work or self-employment in the disaster area.
• Can no longer work or perform services because of physical damage or destruction to the place of employment as a direct result of the disaster.
• Establish that the work or self-employment they can no longer perform was their primary source of income.
• Cannot perform work or self-employment because of an injury as a direct result of the disaster.
• Became the breadwinner or major support of a household because of the death of the head of household.

Individuals in the authorized counties who were directly affected by Hurricane Idalia must first apply for regular unemployment insurance on the Georgia Department of Labor website at, or in person at any GDOL career center. The GDOL will notify claimants if they are also eligible to file for DUA. Eligible claimants must apply for DUA no later than Oct. 10.

When applying for DUA benefits, verification of income may be required. Applicants should be prepared to provide proof of earnings for the most recently completed tax year. Acceptable proof of earnings includes copies of most recently completed income tax returns, copies of quarterly estimated income tax payment records, or similar documents.

To find additional information on DUA and the GDOL career center locations, visit or call the GDOL toll-free customer service line at 1-877-709-8185.

FLORIDA – DUA Benefits Expanded to Additional Counties
Individuals and businesses in the Florida counties of Manatee and Sarasota impacted by Hurricane Idalia are now eligible for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) benefits. Applications for Manatee and Sarasota business and residents must be received by October 11, 2023. As a reminder, DUA benefits are also available for businesses and residents in Citrus, Columbia, Dixie, Gilchrist, Hamilton, Hernando, Jefferson, Lafayette, Levy, Madison, Pasco, Suwannee, and Taylor counties.

To file a DUA claim, visit or call 1-800-385-3920. Customer service representatives are available Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time, to assist claimants. For DUA claims information, call 1-833-FL-APPLY (1-833-352-7759) to speak to a customer service representative.

Work search reporting, waiting week, and Employ Florida registration requirements for Reemployment Assistance claims have been temporarily waived for Floridians impacted by Hurricane Idalia in FEMA disaster-declared counties. By waiving these requirements, eligible Floridians will be able to quickly apply and receive reemployment assistance and disaster unemployment assistance benefits.

MISSISSIPPI – Disaster Unemployment Benefit Deadline is Friday, September 15
Individuals and businesses in the Mississippi counties of Jackson and Jasper impacted by June 14-19 severe storms and tornadoes are eligible for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) benefits if the claims are filed by this Friday, September 15th.

Individuals can apply with the Mississippi Department of Employment Security (MDES), online 24 hours a day at or by calling 601-493-9428 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

VERMONT – Disaster Unemployment Assistance Deadline September 29
People who are out of work because of the flooding in Vermont two months ago can apply for disaster unemployment assistance through September 29, 2023. To submit a claim, people must call the Vermont Unemployment Insurance Claimant Assistance Center at (877) 214-3330. For help with an existing claim, people can call (877) 214-3332 or email [email protected].

WASHINGTON – Claimant Disqualifications for Benefits
Claimants who fail to provide information requested by Washington Employment Security are disqualified from collecting benefits for an indefinite period of time. The WA ESD has redefined the denial period and has clarified what actions need to be taken in order to collect benefits. A claimant may requalify if they a) provide the requested information; b) if they qualify for a new, separate unemployment claim and the previously requested information is not relevant to the new claim; or c) the request for information was related to a quality control study and the response to the study is no longer needed. These changes will take place effective October 7, 2023.


Michele Heckmann

Author Michele Heckmann

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