What you need to know about unemployment benefits in Louisiana

Jobless workers are still seeking financial help during the Coronavirus pandemic. Many unemployed workers still have questions concerning benefits, with Congress unable to agree on another pandemic stimulus package. 

Here is what you need to know. 

How long can a person receive unemployment benefits, and how much?  

Generally, in Louisiana, a person can expect to receive unemployment benefits up to 26 weeks every 12 months. Also, a person may qualify for extended benefits, which can last up to 13 weeks. The best way to determine the amount of time you can expect payments from the State of Louisiana is to use the estimator tool

Unemployment benefits are determined by previous earnings reported. Typically, the maximum amount a person can expect to receive is $247 per week from regular unemployment. Keep in mind; a person may be eligible for pandemic unemployment assistance, which is available through December 26, 2020, in Louisiana.  

What should people understand about the taxability of unemployment?

Unemployment benefits received by a taxpayer is subject to taxation. Generally, taxpayers who receive unemployment do not have taxes withheld from their services. However, a person who may be concerned about taxes due can request for the withholding of federal taxes. They can do so by submitting form W4V, Voluntary Withholding Request Form, to the State of Louisiana. 

Are there unemployment benefits available to individuals impacted by Hurricane Laura?  

Individuals may qualify for disaster unemployment benefits as a result of Hurricane Laura. Disaster unemployment benefits are available to not only employees but to self-employed individuals as well. Benefits apply to the weeks of August 23, 2020, up to February 27, 2021. Those individuals who reside in the following parishes may qualify: Acadia, Allen, Beauregard, Caddo, Calcasieu, Cameron, Grant, Jackson, Jefferson Davis, La Salle, Lincoln, Morehouse, Natchitoches, Ouachita, Rapides, Sabine, St. Landry, Union, Vermilion, Vernon and Winn. Those impacted can visit the unemployment office online to apply.  

Finally, what steps should a person take if they have questions about unemployment? 

Individuals should contact Laworks.net for more information. Or call the State of Louisiana Unemployment at (225) 342-3111. 

Kemberley Washington, CPA is a financial news contributor, author, and owner of Washington CPA Services, LLC.  Connect with her @kemcents!



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