The Department of Workforce Development began issuing determinations and payments for those who applied for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.
DWD Secretary Caleb Frostman said that those who were eligible for PUA would be notified through USPS and in their claims portal.
"Due to PUA being a brand-new federal program and in order to ensure accurate payments, DWD conducted additional testing prior to deployment. While understanding the potential impacts of a minor delay in deployment, we felt it prudent and responsible to prevent any widespread issues that could cause even greater delays and hardship," said Frostman. "We understand many claimants have been patiently waiting for PUA. Please know that DWD is committed to paying out eligible benefits as fast as possible."
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Those filing for unemployment have reported feeling frustrated due to delays in receiving unemployment benefits. As of last week, 1.4 million unemployment claims have been paid out but there are another 700,000 claims still pending. Gov. Tony Evers says they're taking more steps to get the aid out.
PUA is for those who would otherwise not be eligible for unemployment benefits, such as those who are self-employed, those with limited recent work history and other workers not covered by unemployment.
"It is important to note that PUA is not like our normal UI process, so it takes much longer to process an application," said Frostman. "We have received over 80,000 PUA applications since April 21. Now that our PUA platform is deployed, we have staff dedicated to processing these determinations and will continue to onboard more over the coming weeks. It will take some time, but please know we are working to process your application and send out eligible benefits as quickly as possible.
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