Overview

On Monday, June 1, 2020, the Department of Labor (DOL) notified the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) that the state triggered State Extended Benefits (EB). The extension took effect on May 31, 2020. Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC), passed as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), previously extended unemployment benefits for 13 weeks starting March 29, 2020. As a result, the first week Texans were eligible for the additional EB was the week ending in July 4, 2020.

The Extended Benefits Program (EB) is only available during periods of high state or national unemployment. TWC can only pay claimants EB when the 12-week Insured Unemployment Rate (IUR) is 5 percent or more. As of May 31, 2020, Texas’ unemployment rate was 12.8 percent, exceeding the threshold to trigger the extension. Determination of "on" and “off” indicators can be found in TUCA 209.022.

 
 

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Note to Claimants

You do not need to reapply for benefits or take any additional action. If you qualify for Extended Benefits (EB), TWC will automatically enroll you. If you are still unemployed, continue filing your payment request every two weeks.

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Weekly and Maximum Benefit Amounts

Your weekly benefit amount (WBA) for a state EB claim is the same WBA you received on your regular Unemployment Insurance (UI) claim: 

  • The maximum benefit amount (MBA) for state EB is 50 percent of  the regular UI claim’s MBA or up to 13 weeks.

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Duration

EB benefits will end when: 

  • The state triggers off high unemployment.

 OR

  • You exhaust your EB benefits.

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Extended Benefits May 31, 2020, Qualifications

To qualify for EB, you must:

  • have exhausted your regular claim for UI benefits in Texas
  • not qualify for regular UI benefits in Texas or any other state
  • have total base period wages of your original regular UI claim that are:
  • have no disqualifications that would prevent you from being eligible for EB
  • have at least one week in your benefit year that begins in an EB eligibility period.
 

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Work Search Requirements for Extended Benefits Claimants

While receiving Extended Benefits (EB), you must make a systematic and sustained search for work. The EB program has different work search requirements than regular unemployment insurance. Please read the information we send you carefully and follow all instructions. If you do not meet all the EB work search requirements, you may be disqualified from receiving benefits.

You must meet all of the following work search requirements for each week you request benefits:

  • Search for work multiple days of the week. Use different methods and complete different activities, including but not limited to:
  • Apply for any work TWC recommends to you.
  • Document your work search activities completely and accurately on the EB Work Search Log we send you. Keep a copy of the log for your records.
  • Submit your EB Work Search Log within seven days after the day you requested payment:
  • Accept any suitable work offered to you. According to the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act, a job is considered suitable for EB claimants if:

If you refuse a suitable job offer or fail to complete and provide documentation of appropriate work search activities, you may be disqualified from EB and lose your benefits until you have:

  1. Returned to work for at least four weeks working 32 hours or more per week,
  2. Earned four times your weekly benefit amount, AND
  3. Separated from this work through no fault of your own.

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