Learn How To Apply For Unemployment Claims With Our Guide

Learn How To Apply For Unemployment Claims With Our Guide

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A Virginia unemployment insurance benefits extension may be available during periods of high unemployment. However, even if the government makes extensions available, not all unemployment claimants will qualify for additional benefits.

Likewise, eligible beneficiaries may need to meet additional requirements to receive an extension of unemployment benefits. To learn more about unemployment extensions, we’ve provided helpful information below.

  • Learn About Requesting an Unemployment Benefits Extension in Virginia
  • How to Get an Unemployment Benefits Extension in Virginia
  • Past Federal Unemployment Insurance Extensions

Virginia Unemployment Resources

Learn About Requesting an Unemployment Benefits Extension in Virginia

An unemployment extension is administered by the federal government in partnership with Virginia. The Extended Benefits (EB) program was created for times when Virginia’s unemployment rate rises above a certain rate.

Virginia unemployment benefits extensions are only in effect if the federal “on” indicator has been activated for Virginia. In the past, the federal indicator is activated for Virginia when:

  • The Virginia Employment Commission (VEC) and the Department of Labor agree that the current unemployment rate is higher than the proceeding 13-week period during the last two years.
  • The unemployment rate exceeded a predetermined percentage.

Unless the federal government has activated Virginia’s unemployment benefits extension, there is nothing individuals must do further to seek an extension.

The weekly benefits should be the same as they were under the original unemployment terms. The weekly benefit amount will only change if you have a change in income.

If you are unsure if unemployment benefits extensions are available, you can also check with the VEC office, local career center or unemployment agency. There also will be a notice on the Department of Labor website if an unemployment extension is in effect.

How to Get an Unemployment Benefits Extension in Virginia

You may be eligible for an unemployment extension in Virginia if you meet the following criteria:

  • You have exhausted your current benefit period.
  • You were not disqualified for regular benefits for a legitimate reason.
  • You have a base period with at least 20 weeks of full-time work at an employer who paid unemployment insurance.

If you are still receiving benefits and eligible to receive an extension, you would be sent a notice from the VEC instructing you regarding how to file an unemployment benefits extension and satisfy any other requirements.

There may be additional requirements depending on the nature of your previous line of work or the current market. For example, you may have to accept offers with wages less than previously earned. And you may also be required to increase your work search activities.

If the VEC finds that you failed to accept suitable job offers or did not show adequate proof of your work search activities, you could be denied a benefits extension. Activation of an unemployment benefits extension usually mobilizes the state to intensify work search activities.

Past Federal Unemployment Insurance Extensions

At times, the federal or state governments establish an unemployment benefits extension program. For instance, the Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) program temporarily gave qualified workers additional weeks of unemployment payment in 2008, but it expired in 2013. And in 2020, the federal government initiated the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program, which ended in 2021.

Last Updated: October 17, 2022