|Copyright:||(c) 2010 (C) Gannett News Service|
2 million could be cut off by
About 2 million Americans stand to lose their jobless benefits this month after
A: The current standoff is different because Republicans are determined not to increase the deficit to pay for extended unemployment benefits.
Q: How many weeks of unemployment benefits can Americans receive?
A: There are three tiers of benefits. Most states provide 26 weeks of traditional benefits. The federal government provides an additional 34 to 53 weeks in “emergency” benefits, depending on the state’s jobless rate. It then provides 13 to 20 more weeks in “extended” benefits, again depending on the state’s unemployment rate. So the jobless can receive up to 99 weeks of benefits, but that depends on where they live.
Q: If benefits are extended, does that mean out-of-work Americans will get more than 99 weeks of checks?
A: No. Americans who have exhausted their 99 weeks will not get any more checks. Rather, others receiving traditional state benefits or emergency benefits will continue to receive them and they will be able to move up to the next tier. If benefits aren’t restored, people in one tier will still be able to receive remaining weeks of benefits, but they won’t move up.
Q: How many people in total get unemployment checks?
A: Of the 14.8 million jobless Americans, 8.5 million get benefits. If no extension is passed, 2 million more will lose enhanced benefits by February and others will be cut off throughout 2011, the
Q: How much is the average unemployment check?
A: The average check is
Q: At what point has
A: The earliest
Q: Do benefits discourage unemployed workers from taking a job?
A: Most studies have shown benefits only modestly increase the duration of unemployment and that the economic gain outweighs the costs.
Q: What’s the cost of extending benefits?
A: It will cost about