FAQ – Lost Wages Assistance (LWA)

Posted on Sep 9, 2020 in Main, News

Q: What is LWA?
A: LWA is a federal program that adds $300 of unemployment benefits for up to five weeks, so far.

Q: Is the LWA the same program that paid the extra $600 per week under the CARES Act?
A: No. The $600 per week available under the CARES Act expired at the end of July. LWA has different eligibility requirements and is a limited pool of money to be shared among all states that apply and are approved.

Q: How do I know if I’m eligible for LWA benefits?
A: To be eligible for LWA benefits, you must be the following requirements: (1) your weekly benefit amount (WBA) must be at least $100; (2) you must certify that your unemployment or partial unemployment (had hours reduced) was due to disruptions caused by COVID-19; and (3) otherwise qualify for benefits.

Q: Do I need to receive more than $100 in weekly unemployment benefits in order to receive the extra benefits?
A: Yes. Your weekly benefit amount (WBA) must be at least $100. If your WBA is more than $100 but you receive less than $100 each week because money is being deducted from your weekly benefit payment, you will still be eligible for the entire $300.

Q: If I’m eligible, when will I receive the LWA benefits?
A: We will start processing payments for this new program in October. The payments will be staggered for each week you are eligible. Payments will be retroactive for all the weeks for which you are eligible.

Q: How many weeks of LWA funds are available?
A: At this time, LWA is available for six weeks only. The weeks that LWA is available are the following week ending days: (1) August 1, 2020; (2) August 8, 2020; (3) August 15, 2020; (4) August 22, 2020;  (5) August 29; and (6) Sept. 5, 2020.

Q: How do I apply for LWA?
A: If you are a regular UI/PEUC claimant, beginning Saturday, September 12, 2020, you can certify that your unemployment or partial unemployment was due to a disruption caused by COVID-19 by logging into your HUIClaims account at https://huiclaims.hawaii.gov/#/ and answering the question about asking if your unemployment or partial unemployment was due to a disruption caused by COVID-19.

If you are a PUA claimant, you have already certified that your unemployment or partial unemployment was due to a disruption caused by COVID-19.

You will receive the additional $300 for the weeks that you qualify for, even if you already submitted your claim certifications for the weeks in August.

Click here for more details on benefit distribution schedule.