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$300 FEMA Benefit

Frequently asked questions regarding the new $300 Benefit.

Frequently Asked Questions

New Federal $300 Payment- Payments Issued!!!

Payments for the new $300 Lost Wages Assistance (LWA) program have been issued! These payments include $300 for each week that you have filed and been found eligible for unemployment benefits and certified you are unemployed due to disruptions caused by COVID-19 starting August 1st through September 5th. This totals six weeks for which you could potentially be eligible for these $300 payments. Unfortunately, the federal program paying for these benefits has notified states that it does not have any additional funding beyond September 5th. However, if you are later found to be eligible for any weeks during this time period for which your eligibility for unemployment benefits is currently pending, you will also then receive payment of the $300 for those weeks. Please continue to monitor your correspondence for payment notices and information regarding the LWA program.

My weekly benefit is less than $100, will I be eligible for the $300 FEMA payment?

Yes, based upon the emergency order issued by Governor Sununu, the minimum weekly benefit amount has been increased to $100 in order to allow all people filing for unemployment benefits to be eligible for the $300 LWA payment as long as you are able to certify or have previously certified to being unemployed due to disruptions caused by COVID-19. While the $300 payments have been issued for those people that had a weekly benefit amount less than $100 prior to the Governor’s emergency order, the additional benefit payment to get you from your prior weekly amount to $100 will not be issued until September 24th. Please continue to monitor your correspondence for payment notices and information regarding the LWA program.

When will my weekly benefit be increased to $100?

If your weekly benefit amount is less than $100 then pursuant to the emergency order issued by Governor Sununu, your weekly benefit amount will be increased to $100. This was done to make sure all people filing for unemployment benefits would have access to the $300 FEMA payments recently issued by the department. We expect the payment to get you to $100 to occur on September 24th. This payment will cover any week since August 1st you have been eligible for benefits but your weekly benefit amount was less than $100. You will receive the payment for the difference to get you to $100 for each of those weeks. Please continue to monitor your correspondence for payment notices and information regarding the LWA program.

How will I know if I am getting a $300 LWA Payment?

If you have been collecting unemployment benefits from August 1st to September 5th you should have received either a determination from the department indicating you are eligible for the $300 payments or a notice indicating payments have been issued. Please continue to monitor your correspondence for payment notices and information regarding the LWA program.

Who is considered eligible for the $300 LWA payments?

In order to qualify for this new benefit you need to be eligible for unemployment benefits from either the state or federal unemployment programs administered by the department during the period starting August 1st and ending September 5th. You will also need to have certified you are unemployed due to disruptions caused by COVID-19. If you have certified to a COVID-19 related reason on your weekly claim or responded to separate questions issued by the department and you are eligible for at least $1 in base unemployment benefits then you will be eligible for the $300 LWA payment. If you have not certified as to your unemployment being related to the COVID-19 pandemic then you are not eligible for the $300 LWA payment.

What if I received a Denial for LWA?

First, please make sure to review all of your correspondence from the department. It is quite likely that you received a notice indicating that you were denied but have since received new correspondence from the department indicating you are eligible for the $300 LWA payments based upon additional information received by the department. If you have received a denial notice and have not received a later notice indicating you are eligible for LWA or that the LWA payment has been issued then you are likely not eligible for LWA. Please review the appeals information on your determination. Remember, if your unemployment is not due to disruptions caused by COVID-19 you are not eligible for the $300 LWA payments. Please continue to monitor your correspondence for additional information regarding the LWA program.

How much is this new LWA benefit?

This new benefit is available through an agreement between the State of New Hampshire and FEMA and is the result of the Presidential Memorandum issued on August 8th. The department is providing $300 per week for each eligible person filing for unemployment benefits starting with the week ending August 1st through the week ending September 5th. All payments will be issued by NH Employment Security.

When will the $300 LWA payments be available?

New Hampshire has issued the first and only round of $300 LWA payments covering the week ending August 1st through the week ending September 5th. However, if you have been filing for benefits but there is an issue impacting your eligibility for any of these weeks then $300 LWA payments could be issued to you at a later date if and when you are determined eligible for unemployment benefits for any of these weeks. Please continue to monitor your correspondence for payment notices and information regarding the LWA program.

Do I need to do anything in order to access the new $300 LWA benefit?

This new benefit is available for people eligible for unemployment benefits and able to certify that their unemployment is due to disruptions caused by COVID-19. You do not need to do anything different than how you have accessed unemployment benefits in the past. If you are unemployed or partially unemployed then you simply need to continue to file your weekly claim and respond to any requests for information from the department. Please continue to monitor your correspondence for payment notices and information regarding the LWA program.

What if I am working part time but not earning too much so that I still receive a weekly benefit?

Nothing has changed regarding eligibility to file for unemployment benefits while you are working part time. You are not eligible for unemployment benefits if you are working full time. This applies equally to self-employed as well. Your work and earnings from your part time employment continue to need to be reported to the department on your weekly claim. The earnings will then be reviewed to determine whether you still qualify for an unemployment benefit for each week. If you are eligible for at least $1 in weekly benefits, then you will also be eligible for the $300 payment for those weeks occuring between week ending August 1st and week ending September 5th.