State removes hurdles to unemployment benefits

    The state of Iowa is offering assistance for workers and employers hit by layoffs related to the coronavirus.

    Iowa Workforce Development says Iowa workers laid off due to the outbreak, or who have to stay home to self-isolate or care for family members, will be eligible to receive unemployment benefits provided they “meet all other eligibility requirements.”

    Those requirements essentially include working for wages from an employer who claims you as an employee in six of the last eighteen months, and you have earned at least $2,500 in that same time period.

    Those who file benefit claims can expect to receive their first payment within 7 to 10 days, the agency said. Claims that are filed and are identified as a direct or indirect result of the outbreak will not be charged to employers’ accounts. Also, fact-finding interviews for those claims will be waived, although employers will be notified of any claims that are filed.

    Gov. Kim Reynolds said Monday “the state is doing everything we can to ease the process and shorten the time it will take for Iowans to receive unemployment benefits.”

     

    Clark Kauffman
    Deputy Editor Clark Kauffman has worked during the past 30 years as both an investigative reporter and editorial writer at two of Iowa’s largest newspapers, the Des Moines Register and the Quad-City Times. He has won numerous state and national awards for reporting and editorial writing. His 2004 series on prosecutorial misconduct in Iowa was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting. From October 2018 through November 2019, Kauffman was an assistant ombudsman for the Iowa Office of Ombudsman, an agency that investigates citizens’ complaints of wrongdoing within state and local government agencies.