Tennessee to receive funds to pay additional unemployment benefits

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) — Federal officials have approved Tennessee’s request to receive funding to pay the Lost Wages Assistance unemployment benefit in addition to current unemployment benefits.

This will result in an extra $300 to those currently receiving Tennessee Unemployment Compensation, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation, or Extended Benefits payments.

The grant requires that current recipients receive at least $100 in state or federal unemployment benefits each week.

Once the program is implemented, the maximum amount of benefits for Tennesseans will be $575 per week.

The state hasn’t determined when it will begin dispersing the additional benefits, but LWA payments will be retroactive to Aug. 1.

“Unlike the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation Program (FPUC) that ended in July, LWA is paid for through a grant with a specific amount of funding,” the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development said in a news release. “It is important to note when the federal program exhausts its grant funding, it will no longer have the resources to provide LWA payments and the program will end at that time. If the federal program does not exhaust the LWA grant funding, payments will end in Tennessee on Saturday, December 26, 2020.”

State officials are working with a computer system vendor to build a new program for paying out the LWA benefit.

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