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State Unemployment Rate Drop Means Fewer Weeks Of Benefits

Indiana unemployment benefits change on Sunday, but recipients may not notice until November.

Currently, out-of-work Hoosiers can collect jobless benefits for up to 73 weeks — half a year‘s worth from the state, plus an additional 37 weeks in federal benefits.

The federal cutoff varies from state to state — the hardest-hit states are eligible for up to 99 weeks of benefits, with the cutoff getting shorter as the unemployment rate falls.   Indiana‘s jobless rate slipped below eight-and-a-half-percent in February.

Department of Workforce Development spokesman Joe Frank says that triggers a shortening of eligibility.

“If you‘re in the federally extended benefits already, you‘ll only see a reduction of four weeks‘ maximum benefits. If you have not started collecting the federally extended benefits, the maximum number of weeks is being reduced from 73 to 63,” Frank says.

The first people to see a change will see their benefits run out in November instead of December. If a worker has already been on the rolls for more than 60 weeks, however, the old limit still applies.   The Department of Workforce Development has a calculator on its website to add up how much eligibility is left.

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