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File for Disaster Unemployment Assistance by Oct. 3

Individuals in Delaware County who have become unemployed as a direct result of Hurricane Irene or Tropical Storm Lee, may be eligible for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) relief. You may qualify for DUA even though you would not normally be eligible for Unemployment Insurance benefits.

The first step for those affected is to call the Telephone Claims Center (TCC) at 1-888-209-8124 (or 1-877-358-5306 if you live out of state) by OCTOBER 3. Answer the questions to indicate that you lost your job as a direct result of the effects of Hurricane Irene or Tropical Storm Lee.

Self-employed people and farmers may also be eligible for DUI  if they are performing less than their normal, full-time services and earning wages less than $405 a week.

Employers also have more time – through October 31 – to pay employer unemployment insurance (UI) taxes.

Fact sheets and application forms can be found on the Dept. of Labor website: http://www.labor.ny.gov/announce/2011-irene-lee-services.shtm. A DOL representative is also stationed at Belleayre Mountain Flood Recovery Center from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. to answer any questions.

Examples of reasons for unemployment that may make a person eligible to receive DUI:

  • You were injured in the disaster and are unable to work, whether you are an employee or self-employed.
  • Your workplace was damaged, destroyed, or you can’t work because of the disaster.
  • Your transportation to work is not available because of the disaster.
  • You cannot get to your job because you must travel through the affected area, and you cannot do that because of the disaster.
  • You were about to begin working, but could not because of the disaster.
  • You derived most of your income from areas affected by the disaster, whether you worked for yourself or for an employer, and your business is down as a direct result of the disaster.

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Middletown resident and graphic designer.


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