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California to provide assistance to federal workers impacted by government shutdown

SACRAMENTO – The California Employment Development Department (EDD) today announced that it will provide Unemployment Insurance benefits to federal workers in the state who have been furloughed or are required to work without pay because of the ongoing federal government shutdown. To access these funds, these workers can call EDD’s dedicated toll-free number – (855) 327-7056 – to file an unemployment insurance benefit claim.

“As the government shutdown enters its third week with no prospect of resolution or payment of salaries to affected federal employees, many workers find themselves in acute financial distress,” said Labor and Workforce Development Agency Secretary Julie A. Su. “Timely access to unemployment benefits may be of enormous help to furloughed federal workers and those who are working without pay.”

“We encourage all federal employees in California to call us at the number established specifically for them to apply for unemployment benefits that can provide financial relief during the shutdown,” said EDD Director Patrick Henning. Federal employees who do not have an existing unemployment benefit claim may apply using the Unemployment Insurance Application (Federal Employee) or by calling (855) 327-7056 between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m., Monday through Friday. In addition, employees who have an existing unemployment insurance claim can reopen that claim online using UI Online.

Federal workers in California who, through no fault of their own, are out of work or who are required to work without any legal assurance of payment for their services absent enactment of federal legislation, can apply for benefits immediately and EDD will assess their individual eligibility for benefits.

Unemployment benefits amounts range from $40 to $450 per week depending on earnings and are available for up to 26 weeks. Employees who receive unemployment benefits and later receive a retroactive payment from their employer for the same time period will be required to repay the benefits received

EDD’s Frequently Asked Questions webpage on the federal government shutdown provides information about benefits and services available to federal workers, unemployment insurance benefits eligibility, applications and processing, and provides links to additional resources for more information about the unemployment insurance program.

EDD’s jobs estimates for November 2018, indicate that there are approximately 245,000 federal workers in California, including full-time, part-time and seasonal workers.

According to the most recent official data, a total of 779 federal workers in the state filed for unemployment benefits in the week ending December 29, the first week of the shutdown.

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