State Releases Updated Unemployment Insurance Information

Posted on Jul 16, 2020 in News

Hawaii State Seal

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR AND INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS

 DAVID Y. IGE
GOVERNOR

SCOTT T. MURAKAMI
DIRECTOR

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 16, 2020

STATE RELEASES UPDATED UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE INFORMATION

State Has Issued $2.2 Billion in Benefits Since March 1

HONOLULU — The Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (DLIR) today announced updated unemployment insurance claims information, including paying $2,189,522,737 and 2,030,502 weeks claimed since the onset of the COVID-19 Pandemic on March 1, 2020.

“Ninety-one percent (91%) of the valid unemployment insurance claims that have come in since the beginning of the COVID-19 Pandemic have been processed and paid out by the DLIR. Although it appears that the number of claims requiring departmental action is stable, we are still receiving nearly 8,000 new claims a week,” said Deputy Director Anne Perreira-Eustaquio (see chart below).

 

No. of claims filed statewide: 254,995
No. of invalid claims filed statewide: – 75,223
No. of valid claims awaiting claimant to verify: – 9,888
No. of valid claims requiring DLIR action 169,884
No. of claims paid: 154,984
No. of claims requiring DLIR action 7/16/20 14,900

“One of our current challenges in contacting employers and claimants is them not answering our phone calls,” noted Deputy Director Anne Perreira-Eustaquio. “If you are an employer or worker involved in the unemployment insurance program please note that both (808) 762-5751 and (808)-762-5752  is the department trying to reach you to process claims.”

The Department’s operations continue to evolve including the following common issues:

  • Persons working full-time and therefore ineligible for benefits but filing for the loss of part-time work,
  • Incorrect deposit information supplied by claimants,
  • No weekly certifications filed by claimants,
  • Claim backdate issues,
  • Separation from work that requires investigation,
  • Not allowing location information while filing certifications,
  • Claimants that have filed multiple claims, and
  • Failure to create a username and password in the claimant online portal.

The DLIR expects to borrow from the Federal Government tomorrow to pay for unemployment insurance benefits due to the depletion of the Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund. There was $596,912,407 in the Trust Fund at the beginning of the calendar year that was used to pay for State benefits during this pandemic. The additional benefits like the extensions and $600 plus-up are entirely federally funded. The CARES Act allows states to borrow without interest during 2020. Hawaii joins California, Illinois, Kentucky, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio, Texas, and West Virginia in borrowing funds to pay for unemployment insurance benefits. All claimants will continue to receive the full benefits due them and there is no possibility of running out of funds to pay for benefits.

As reported across the nation, fraudsters are targeting state unemployment insurance systems during the COVID-19 pandemic through various schemes and identity theft. Bad actors are using stolen personal information from sources outside of the department, such as from massive external data breaches like the Equifax breach, to apply for benefits through the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and attempt to route payments to their own bank accounts.

If you received a letter regarding a claim for PUA and you did NOT apply for benefits, please follow the instructions on the letter to report potential identity theft at pua.hawaii.gov. The DLIR is not able to detect how or when your identity was stolen and cannot prevent it from being used elsewhere. If you suspect that you have been a victim of identity theft, file a report with the Federal Trade Commission at www.identitytheft.gov. You may also check to see if your email has been breached by visiting https://haveibeenpwned.com.

For more information about identity theft and PUA benefits please visit https://labor.hawaii.gov/pua-fraud-faqs/.

For more information about unemployment insurance and other labor issues please visit: https://labor.hawaii.gov/covid-19-labor-faqs/.

 

Equal Opportunity Employer/Program
Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities.
TDD/TTY Dial 711 then ask for (808) 586-8866

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View DLIR news releases:
http://labor.hawaii.gov/blog/category/news/

 

Media Contact:
Bill Kunstman
Department of Labor and Industrial Relations
(808) 586-8845
[email protected]
http://labor.hawaii.gov