Unemployment Assistance & Paid Family Leave

Workers Affected by COVID-19 may be eligible for benefitsLatest Information - January 7, 2021

UI Benefit Extensions Q & A

Info on Suspended Payments Due to Fraud Screening

Sick or Quarantined

If you’re unable to work due to having or being exposed to COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional), you can file a Disability Insurance (DI) claim. DI provides short-term benefit payments to eligible workers who have a full or partial loss of wages due to a non-work-related illness, injury, or pregnancy. Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages (depending on income) and range from $50-$1,300 a week.

The Governor’s Executive Order waives the one-week unpaid waiting period, so you can collect DI benefits for the first week you are out of work. If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim.

For guidance on the disease, visit the California Department of Public Health website.

Reduced Work Hours

If your employer has reduced your hours or shut down operations due to COVID-19, you can file an Unemployment Insurance (UI) claim. UI provides partial wage replacement benefit payments to workers who lose their job or have their hours reduced, through no fault of their own. Workers who are temporarily unemployed due to COVID-19 and expected to return to work with their employer within a few weeks are not required to actively seek work each week. However, they must remain ready to work during their unemployment for each week of benefits claimed and meet all other eligibility criteria. Eligible individuals can receive benefits that range from $40-$450 per week.

The Governor’s Executive Order waives the one-week unpaid waiting period, so you can collect UI benefits for the first week you are out of work. If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim.

Self-Employed

The available benefits are insurance programs. To be eligible, either you or an employer had to make contributions in the last 5-18 months. It is possible these contributions were made at a prior job, or if you were misclassified as an independent contractor instead of an employee. We encourage you to apply for the benefit program that is most appropriate for your situation. Visit Self-Employed/Independent Contractor to learn more.

Caregiving – Paid Family Leave

If you’re unable to work because you are caring for an ill or quarantined family member with COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional), you can file a Paid Family Leave (PFL) claim. PFL provides up to six weeks of benefit payments to eligible workers who have a full or partial loss of wages because they need time off work to care for a seriously ill family member or to bond with a new child. Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages (depending on income) and range from $50-$1,300 a week. If you are eligible, the EDD processes and issues payments within a few weeks of receiving a claim.

School Closures

If your child’s school is closed, and you have to miss work to be there for them, you may be eligible for Unemployment Insurance benefits. Eligibility considerations include if you have no other care options and if you are unable to continue working your normal hours remotely. File an Unemployment Insurance claim and EDD representatives will decide if you are eligible.

EDD Implements New Military Assistance Provision of Paid Family Leave program at start of the New Year

Beginning January 1, 2021, Californians who are eligible for Paid Family Leave (PFL) may take time off from work to support a family member (spouse, registered domestic partner, parent, or child) in the military who is deployed or being deployed to a foreign country. Qualifying events for an individual to receive PFL Military Assist benefits include activities to manage essential needs during military deployment such as setting up childcare or parental care, attending military sponsored events, or making legal or financial arrangements.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for PFL Military Assist benefits, claimants must:

  • Be unable to do their regular or customary work due to a need to participate in a qualifying event related to the military deployment of their spouse, registered domestic partner, parent, or child to a foreign country.
  • Be employed or actively looking for work at the time their Military Assist leave begins.
  • Have earned at least $300 from which State Disability Insurance (SDI) deductions were withheld during their base period. For additional information, visit Calculating Paid Family Leave Benefit Payment Amounts.
  • Complete and submit their claim form no earlier than the first day their Military Assist claim begins, but no later than 41 days after their Military Assist benefits begin. Military Assist is available to eligible individuals with a claim start date of January 1, 2021, or after.

California Paid Family Leave program at a Glance:

  • California became the first state in the nation to create a PFL program when the state law was enacted in 2002.
  • Most employees have already paid for the program benefits through mandatory SDI paycheck deductions noted as “CASDI” on most paystubs.
  • Claimants may receive about 60 to 70 percent (depending on income) of wages earned 5 to 18 months before their claim start date for up to eight weeks within any 12-month period. The length of time worked at your current job does not affect eligibility.
  • Benefit payments range from $50 to a maximum of $1,357 per week. The EDD offers an online benefit calculator to provide workers with an estimate of their potential weekly benefits.
  • PFL claim benefit eligibility is based on your claim start date.