The Process: Pandemic Unemployment Insurance

Updated: May 15



Lets me just start off by saying you will be playing the waiting game.


Pandemic Unemployment Assistance filing for self-employed, gig workers, and independent contractors officially begin on April 13th for Georgians. The first step is to file for regular unemployment insurance and answer the COVID-19 repeated questions that were included on the application. Once your application had been processed you were to wait to see if you were denied for regular state unemployment insurance (UI). If you were denied the regular UI then you would be sent information via email on how to file for the PUA, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.


The program or the steps that I've experienced in filing for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance:


File for regular UI via dol.georgia.gov . Be sure that you receive a confirmation at the end of the process. This is critical. The site tells you if you have not received a confirmation (which comes with a confirmation number that you should note) then your application has not been processed.

Following submission of your application look out for an email with your next steps. This email typically sent shortly after successfully submitting your UI application. In the email are the next steps that you must follow in order for your application to go through department of labor’s systematic process. Ex: In the first email I received after submitting my UI application I was instructed to “claim at least one week of benefits for a determination to be made on your claim.” Be sure you adhere to what your next steps are and in a timely manner.


Days later I received a letter of denial in the mail. The letter outlined the details of your filing, whether approved or denied, and the amount of weekly benefits you are to receive. It also gives you details on how you can file an appeal if you don’t agree with the decision of your claim. Be sure to read over your letter carefully.


I was denied regular UI so I filed an appeal. I wasn’t sure if I needed to or not so I did it anyway. Some time after that I received another email classifying me as being potentially eligible for Pandemic Unemployable Assistance (PUA).


The PUA email provided the next steps in my process. It had a special link in the email that I had to use to submit the PUA application. It also provided information on some of the documents that I may needed. They were the some of the same documents needed during thr regular UI application. Find them here. The email also alerted that following the complication of thr application I would receive an email confirmation and the next steps I’m the process.


After completing the PUA application an email was sent and that is where I had to submit the requested documentations that were requested to the appropriate place. The documents that I was to submit had to be submitted by a specific date. It also gave a few other instructions within this email as well, for me I was instructed to file weekly claims. So please read all of your information and follow the instructions as requested to reduce further delay.


Following submission of those documents I received another email letting me know that my documents were received successfully.


Following the email I received two letters in the mail with the benefit amount and when they started.

So far these are the steps that I have been taken on in filing for PUA. My original claim was filed around April 16th. I have not yet received payment yet, but I’ve received constant communication from GA DOL as I continue to follow through on completing the instructions that they send to me. I would strongly suggest that you keep a close watch for your email especially and your mail. I also suggest keeping records for yourself of all the communication you receive from the department of labor, whether it’s mail, email, and the confirmation numbers from your application(s). You must have patience through the process and stay organized through the process. KEEP YOUR RECORDS!



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