How to Extend Your UI Benefits

If you applied for Unemployment Insurance (UI) at the beginning of the COVID-19 public health emergency (mid-March), you have likely exhausted or are about to exhaust your benefits. UI is designed to last for 26 weeks, but fortunately, there are additional 13-week extensions currently available. The extension is not automatic, however. UI claimants will need to apply and fill out an application to receive extended support.

If you applied for Unemployment Insurance (UI) at the beginning of the COVID-19 public health emergency (mid-March), you have likely exhausted or are about to exhaust your benefits. UI is designed to last for 26 weeks, but fortunately, there are additional 13-week extensions currently available. The extension is not automatic, however. UI claimants will need to apply and fill out an application to receive extended support. 

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) currently lasts 39 weeks. At this time, there is no benefit extension for PUA.

There are two 13-week extension programs for regular UI-users: Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation and Extended Benefits. Click here (Español, አማርኛ) to download our one-page fact sheet on both programs. 


Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation

If you started receiving UI on or after July 1, 2019 and have collected benefits for 26 weeks, you are eligible for the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) 13-week extension. 

You will need to apply for PEUC at the end of your initial 26 benefit weeks. To apply, visit does.dcnetworks.org/initialclaims and follow the prompts.

PEUC is available until December 26, 2020. You will receive the same weekly amount you received through your initial UI, unless your income has changed. Additional information from the Department of Employment Services (DOES) on PEUC is here.


Extended Benefits

If you have exhausted both your initial 26 weeks of UI benefits and your 13-week PEUC extension, you are eligible for an additional 13 weeks of benefits through the Extended Benefits (EB) program.

You can apply for EB at the end of your 13-week PEUC extension. To apply, visit does.dcnetworks.org/initialclaims and follow the prompts. 

You will receive the same weekly amount you received through UI and PEUC, unless your income has changed. EB will be available for as long as unemployment levels in the District remain higher than normal.


Materials to Have Ready

To begin the process of filing for unemployment benefits, you should have the following information readily available:
  • Your social security number
  • Your most recent 30-day employer’s name, address, phone number and dates of employment
  • Your Alien Registration Number, if you are not a US Citizen
  • Your DD214, if you are ex-military
  • Your Standard Form 8 or Standard Form 50, if you are a former federal employee
  • Severance pay information (only applicable if you did or will receive severance pay)
  • Pension (if you have or will receive pension benefits)

Click here to return to our main Unemployment page for additional resources.