Calculator figures duration of UI benefit

ALBANY—A new feature on the state Labor Department’s website is designed to make it easier for Unemployment Insurance (UI) claimants to determine the length of time they can receive benefits, according to an announcement from state Labor Commissioner M. Patricia Smith.
Given the complex nature of the federal extension programs (multiple Tiers with differing timelines), the department has implemented an online tool to assist the unemployed in gathering information on the total possible number of weeks they may collect UI benefits, based on their initial claim filing date.
This online calculator page went live on the Labor Department’s website November 27 and since then there have been more than 50,000 hits on the page.
“With different federal extension programs and different criteria in place for each, there are literally thousands of New Yorkers who are wondering how many weeks of UI benefits they are entitled to. This new on-line tool was developed in-house to alleviate some of the confusion; it is easy to use and enables claimants to find out their length of benefits immediately,” said Commissioner Smith in a press release.
Anticipating recent UI legislation at the federal level, Governor David Paterson directed the Labor Department to act quickly. As a result, New York was among the first states in the nation to get these important benefits to those who needed it most, the release said.
As further legislative action could still arise at federal level, such as extending the filing periods for the various extension programs, once again we will be ready. The department will change the calculator as needed.
The UI benefits calculator can be found at the following link: [1]

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