Wilson added to disaster unemployment assistance list

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Nine more counties, including Wilson, have been added to the N.C. Division of Employment Security’s list of counties approved for Disaster Unemployment Assistance due to the effects of Hurricane Florence. The other new counties are Hoke, Hyde, Johnston, Lee, Moore, Pitt, Richmond and Scotland, according to a news release.

Individuals from these counties who are affected by the disaster, and are unable to continue working, must file an application for benefits by Oct. 25.

Workers who became unemployed as a direct result of the effects of Hurricane Florence in North Carolina may be eligible for unemployment insurance benefits under the DUA program. Business owners affected by the storm can also qualify for benefits.

Workers or business owners meeting the following criteria may be eligible:

• Individuals who are unemployed due to the disaster and do not qualify for regular unemployment insurance benefits;

• Self-employed individuals and small business owners who lost income due to the disaster;

• Individuals who were prevented from working due to an injury caused by the disaster;

• Individuals who have become the major supplier of household income due to the disaster-related death of the previous major supplier of household income;

• Individuals who are unable to reach their jobs or self-employment locations because they must travel through the affected area and are prevented from doing so by the disaster;

• Individuals who were to commence employment or self-employment but were prevented from doing so by the disaster.

DUA is funded by the federal government. Individuals need to file first for regular unemployment insurance. If an individual is determined ineligible for regular unemployment insurance or has exhausted their regular unemployment insurance benefits, a DUA claim can then be filed. Individuals will need their Social Security number, copies of their most recent federal income tax forms or check stubs, or documentation to support they were working or self-employed when the disaster occurred.

To receive DUA benefits, all required documentation must be submitted within 21 days from the day the DUA application is filed.

DUA is available for weeks of employment beginning with the week starting Sept. 9, 2018, and may last for up to 27 weeks, as long as the claimant’s unemployment continues to be as a result of Hurricane Florence.

Individuals may contact DES by calling 1-866-795-8877 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. to apply for DUA benefits. For more information, email DES at des.dua@nccommerce.com or go to visit des.nc.gov.

For an updated list of counties that have been approved, visit the News and Highlights section at des.nc.gov.