165,000 Unemployment Checks Headed To Arizona Applicants This Week

By Holliday Moore, Jill Ryan
Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services
Published: Tuesday, May 12, 2020 - 7:54am
Updated: Tuesday, May 12, 2020 - 9:20am

DES Office
Sky Schaudt/KJZZ
An office for the Arizona Department of Economic Security in Phoenix.

Checks worth a total $350 million are on the way for Arizonans who applied for benefits under the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program.

The Department of Economic Security announced Monday that it is mailing 165,000 checks for three weeks of back benefits through May 2. The checks will range from $2,151 to $2,520.

→ Self-Employed Arizona Workers, Freelancers Wait For Unemployment Assistance And Answers

The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program provides $117 to $240 per week, in line with Arizona's state unemployment benefits. And individuals receiving the assistance will also get $600 per week from the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program. That equals a range of $717 to $840 per week.

The Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, part of the federal CARES Act, covers employees who are not otherwise eligible for unemployment benefits, including the self-employed and independent contractors.

Tuesday, DES will begin taking new applications for the program online. DES partnered with a private vendor to develop a system where an unemployed resident can receive benefits under the CARES Act 2020 faster. Payments under the new system will roll out to those eligible within days. 

More than 545,000 Arizonans have filed first-time unemployment claims since mid-March.

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