Reduction to Unemployment Benefits on the Horizon

Here is a copy of the letter to be issued to those receiving Unemployment Benefits. These reductions will take place starting the week ending 5/4/2013.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING THE REDUCTION TO YOUR EUC WEEKLY UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFITS

Dear claimant:

You are receiving unemployment benefits as part of a federal program known as Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC).  In 2011, Congress passed a law known as the “sequester,” which calls for budget cuts to most federal programs. This new law took effect earlier this year.  Due to these federal budget cuts, the unemployment benefits that you are currently receiving will be reduced by 12.8% starting the week ending May 4, 2013. Massachusetts is required by federal law to implement this reduction.

Not only will your weekly benefit amount be reduced by 12.8% but there will be a corresponding reduction in your remaining EUC account balance.  These reductions to your unemployment benefits will last until September 29, 2013, at which time the U.S. Department of Labor will reassess the matter and inform us about the future of the EUC program. Once you certify for the week ending May 4, 2013 (or any subsequent week before September 29, 2013), DUA will send you a revised determination of your new weekly benefit amount and new account balance.

If these cuts impact your health and welfare, you may be eligible for other resources including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), Transitional Aid to Families with Dependent Children (TAFDC), Emergency Aid to the Elderly, Disabled, and Children (EAEDC). For information about these programs, call 2-1-1 or visit www.mass211help.org 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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