New Developments on Federal Unemployment Extensions and Benefits
(Updated April 23, 2014)

En español

April 23, 2014, 8:00 a.m.

Updated: The number of individuals who have run out of benefits is now over 1,274,570.

The EDD continues to monitor the situation in Washington D.C. for any developments regarding federal unemployment extension benefits. We encourage our customers to continue monitoring this page and the EDD Facebook and EDD Twitter pages for any updates.

As of December 28, 2013, the federal unemployment extension program has ended. Unless Congress and the President agree to renew the extensions, no more federal extension benefits can be paid for weeks ending after December 28, 2013. With the end of the federal extension program, the Reemployment and Eligibility Assessment Emergency Unemployment Compensation (REA EUC) program has also ended.

Congressional Activities to Potentially Reauthorize Federal Extension Benefits

Legislation to extend federal extension benefits retroactively from the end of December 2013 through the end of May 2014 passed the U.S. Senate in early April 2014 and is now headed to the U.S. House of Representatives. Although there has been some Congressional action taken to extend the federal extensions, there have been no final decisions made.

As of the end of March, an estimated 332,000 individuals in California are losing out on federal extension benefits. This number includes approximately 222,000 claimants who were the most immediately impacted as of December 28, 2013, and an additional estimated 110,000 individuals who exhausted all their regular state-provided UI benefits and may have qualified for a new federal extension. The EDD sent letters to approximately 222,000 individuals in mid-November notifying them that they would lose their federally funded extension benefits at the end of 2013 unless Congress and the President agree to renew the extensions.

The EDD is closely monitoring the situation in Washington D.C. for any developments regarding federal extension benefits and is preparing to restart the federal extension program as quickly as possible, if approved. Since there has been no final decision made, there is no need to contact us about restarting a federal extension at this time. We strongly encourage our customers to continue monitoring this page and our Facebook and Twitter pages for any further developments.

There are a total of twelve bills that would continue the federal extension program for anywhere from three months to one or two additional years. The recent legislation passed by the U.S. Senate is a retroactive five month extension from the end of December 2013 through the end of May 2014. This bill must still be approved by the U.S. House of Representatives and signed by the President before it can become effective.

Below is a list to the proposed legislation:

In addition, the Obama Administration has released information about federal extensions in a report prepared by the U.S. Department of Labor and the Council of Economic Advisers entitled The Economic Benefits of Extending Unemployment Insurance.

Extension Impact in California

Long-term unemployed persons in California have received $44.85 billion from four tiers of benefit extensions enacted in response to the recession and from the separate FED-ED extension. The FED-ED benefit ended in May 2012. At the peak of recession-triggered job losses, the federal government provided up to 73 weeks of extended benefits, in addition to the regular 26 weeks of state benefits.

In late 2012, the fate of the extensions was in doubt until Congress reached a last-minute agreement on renewing the four-tiers of federal extension benefits until the end of 2013. That legislation eventually reduced the maximum federal extension benefits available in California to 37 weeks and extended the benefits only until the end of 2013.

The EDD sent letters to claimants who were certifying for federal extension benefits advising them of the cutoff of these extension payments and referring them to agencies that provide a wide variety of assistance, including:

  • America’s Job Centers of CaliforniaSM (AJCC)
    The EDD and a variety of state and local agencies provide a broad range of employment and training
    services – including résumé and job search assistance – in local AJCC offices throughout the state.
  • WE Connect
    WE Connect is a national program that connects families to valuable programs and services that can help them get ahead. Several of these programs, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC), are available and accessible to families.
  • Keep Your Home California
    Keep Your Home California is a federally funded foreclosure prevention program that offers assistance to distressed homeowners.
  • California Department of Social Services (CDSS)
    The CDSS administers or oversees programs that help nearly 3 million California residents – cash aid and employment services for families through the California Work Opportunities and Responsibility to Kids (CalWORKs) program; food assistance through the CalFresh Program; child care, residential or in-home care; and services or assistance for disabled individuals.
  • 211 Directory – Connect with Your County
    This easy to remember phone number connects people with important community services in most counties.

For more information about these and other assistance services for unemployed individuals, visit the Additional Resources page.

Potential Maximum Weeks of Benefits Provided

Federal extensions of unemployment benefits first became available in California in June 2008. Once offering up to 73 additional weeks of unemployment after someone ran out of their regular up to 26 weeks of state-provide benefits, federal extensions expired at the end of 2013.

The following chart is a breakdown of the federal extension benefits and the total maximum weeks of unemployment benefits that have been available in California. The total number of potential maximum weeks of benefits available depend on when your regular UI claim and extensions were filed.

Federal Unemployment Benefit Extensions
Potential Maximum Weeks Of Benefits Provided
Filing Date
Feb 19, 2012 –
May 6, 2012
May 13, 2012 –
May 20, 2012
May 27, 2012 –
Aug 26, 2012
Sep 2, 2012 –
Aug 11, 2013
Aug 18, 2013 –
Dec 22, 2013
Claim/Extension Filing Deadline Date Last Payable Week Ending Date
Up to 26 weeks Up to 26 weeks Up to 26 weeks Up to 26 weeks Up to 26 weeks Once someone becomes unemployed Once someone collects all available benefits or the claim ends, whichever occurs first
Tier I Up to 20 weeks Up to 20 weeks Up to 20 weeks Up to 14 weeks Up to 14 weeks December 22, 2013 December 28, 2013*
Tier 2 Up to 14 weeks Up to 14 weeks Up to 14 weeks Up to 14 weeks Up to 14 weeks December 22, 2013 December 28, 2013*
Tier 3 Up to 13 weeks Up to 13 weeks Up to 13 weeks Up to 9 weeks Up to 9 weeks December 22,
December 28, 2013*
Tier 4 Up to 6 weeks Up to 16 weeks Up to 6 weeks Up to 10 weeks 0 weeks August 11, 2013 December 28, 2013*
Up to 20 weeks 0 weeks 0 weeks 0 weeks 0 weeks May 6, 2012 May 12, 2012
TOTAL Up to 99 weeks Up to 89 weeks Up to 79 weeks Up to 73 weeks Up to 63 weeks    

*There are special claims that have a week ending date other than Saturday. In those cases, benefits may be payable for the week ending January 1, 2014.

Current Benefits Status

Currently, there are more than 557,000 people certifying for benefits on a regular unemployment claim in California. This number has dropped from the previously reported 712,000 due to the end of the federal extension benefits in December 2013.

Between regular and federal extension benefits, the EDD has paid a total of $17.1 billion in benefits for calendar year 2011, $13.8 billion for calendar year 2012, and about $10.5 billion through December 2013. These benefits provide critical sustenance to unemployed workers and their families, in addition to local businesses where much of the benefits are spent on basic needs.

Customers Who Have Run Out of Maximum Benefits

As of April 21, 2014, there have been close to 1,274,600 unemployed workers in California who have run out of all available benefits.

Unemployed individuals may be eligible for assistance to meet basic needs as well as other services such as health care, counseling, employment and training assistance. For more information, read the Assistance for Unemployed California Residents flyer and the Job Dislocation Brochure: English | Spanish.

For any further developments in the Unemployment Insurance program, as well as all other EDD programs and services, we encourage our customers to watch for updates on our website and on our EDD Twitter and Facebook pages.

This Google Translate™ translation service is provided for informational purposes only as the EDD is unable to guarantee the accuracy of this translation. View Disclaimer


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