How Long Will $300 Unemployment Bonus Checks Last?

By Stefano Tromba
February 3, 2021

The December 2020 stimulus package added 11 weeks of unemployment with an expiration date of March 14. Keep in mind, there’s an overflow period lasting until April 5 for those who have exhausted their state’s benefits before the expiration date.

Which states have yet to send $300 bonus checks?

As of Jan. 29, 49 states already started processing the supplemental unemployment payments. Unemployed workers in Arkansas will have to wait until early February to see their extra checks. This is due to issues with the state’s unemployment system, according to the Arkansas Times on Jan. 18. Now, even though almost every state is sending the $300 bonus payments, not everyone who qualifies has received them. California, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Hawaii, Pennsylvania, and Virginia continue to have issues that will delay payments to unemployed workers for weeks.

Are the $300 bonus payments retroactive?

The language of the stimulus bill doesn’t specify whether the unemployment bonus is retroactive. However, reports indicate you shouldn’t expect to see a federally instituted lump sum payment to make up for previous weeks of not receiving a $300 bonus check.

What is the qualification to receive the $300 bonus weekly checks?

If you’ve been laid off or furloughed, you’re qualified to apply for unemployment benefits from the state where you live. Once the state approves your claim, you can apply to receive whatever state benefits you’re entitled to. Because states cover 30% to 50% of a person’s wages, there’s no single sum you could expect on a national basis.

When the CARES Act passed in March, it provided unemployed workers with a weekly bonus check of $600 on top of the amount the state was offering, but those payments ended in July. Trump’s executive memo signed on Aug. 8 reinstated a weekly bonus check for a reduced $300 funded by the federal government through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. These were offered for only six weeks to states that applied (all except South Dakota). Those receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) would also receive the $300 bonus.

Do I qualify for the additional federal unemployment insurance?

Eligibility criteria vary from state to state, but the general rule is that you should apply if you’ve lost your job or have been furloughed through no fault of your own. This would include a job lost directly or indirectly because of the coronavirus pandemic.

How does my state calculate unemployment benefit amounts?

The state determines how much each applicant receives, usually based on an individual’s gross income. It varies from state to state but is typically between $300 and $600.

How do states handle unemployment payments?

Most states provide up to 26 weeks of funding, though others, such as Georgia, limited benefits to 12 weeks. On the other hand, Delaware extended benefits for up to 30 weeks.

The weekly benefit amount depends on an applicant’s gross income when employed and ranges between $300 and $600, with some exceptions. Mississippi had paid up to $235, while Massachusetts’ maximum has been $1,220. Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) from the CARES Act added an additional 13 weeks funded by the federal government, but another stimulus bill with unemployment insurance would need to pass to extend it further. The latest COVID-19 relief package would add another 11 weeks of PEUC.

Table of Contents

Work smarter, not harder

Automate your payroll and HR systems with Fingercheck today!

Stay in the loop

Subscribe to our blog to stay updated on the latest Fingercheck updates, industry news, payroll, employee management tools, and HR tips.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Shopping Cart
Scroll to Top