All of the information here is gathered from the Employment Security Department (ESD) website to help you navigate the process and system as easily as possible. Things are changing on a daily basis so be sure you get the information from the EDS website to make sure.
Everyone who is working in some capacity as a massage therapist can file for unemployment– Employees, IC’s and Self employed. There is also an additional $600 per week added to everyone to your weekly benefits until the end of July. This will be handled by the ESD as far as we know now. The regular unemployment benefits have been extended for an additional 13 weeks making it a total of 9 months of benefits. see video from ESD Commissioner LeVine’s update on federal stimulus package.
The systems are way overwhelmed and the new CARES Act is NOT implemented yet but should be byApril 18th according to Commissioner LeVine. See this video for her statement:
Step by step slides of how to apply for unemployment (but I don’t think they are updated for the self employed options): https://esdorchardstorage.blob.core.windows.net/esdwa/Default/ESDWAGOV/Unemployment/Webinar/IntroductionToUnemployment.pdf
Federal stimulus Key messages from>>>https://esd.wa.gov/newsroom/covid-19#stimulus
- The federal stimulus legislation (CARES ACT) will likely help many people, including those who usually don’t qualify for unemployment benefits – like self-employed workers and those who don’t have the typically required 680 hours.It also includes an additional $600 per week of unemployment benefits for up to four months, and an extension of benefits by 13 weeks to total 39 weeks.
- It is important to note that benefits will start from the time you became eligible for unemployment, not from the time your application is submitted or approved. If you’ve had trouble getting through on the phone to complete your application, or you are newly eligible, you will get back pay from the time you became eligible for unemployment.
- If you are newly eligible for unemployment, please do not apply at this time as our system is not yet set up to accept your application. If you were previously eligible you may apply anytime, preferably online as we are experiencing a very high call volume.
- The best way to stay up to date is by subscribing to the Employment Security Department’s COVID-19 action alert updates. A link to sign up is on the home page of wa.gov.
The systems are overwhelmed and understaffed. Benefits are retroactive when you do get through and the systems catch up.🤩🤩https://esd.wa.gov/newsroom/retroactive-payments
Your claim will most likely be automatically denied. Don’t worry! These letters and emails are automated messages.
“ALERT: Standby Updated: March 23, 2020
What if I am temporarily laid off work because of COVID-19?If you are temporarily laid off work you should file for unemployment benefits and apply for standby status (full-time or part-time), you may receive an automated notice indicating your request is denied. Do not worry, that notice does not reflect the emergency rules which allow workers to request up to 12 weeks of standby. Employers will be notified of your application. Additionally, employers can request up to 12 weeks of standby for their workers.We are in the process of updating our computer system. Once that is complete we will be reviewing all standby denials from March 8 forward to determine if they meet the new standby criteria. If your request is approved, you will receive another letter informing you of the approval. Continue to file weekly claims during this time. Do not call the claims center.
Update on SAW Accounts – 04/05/2020 – from the ESD.
SAW Account Information from the website
What do I do if I get a message stating,
“we can’t verify the information you entered”?
A = You will have to call the SAW Helpdesk to assist you in verifying your information.
If I enter my SSN incorrectly, what do I do?
A = You will have to call the SAW Helpdesk to deactivate your incorrect account so you can start a new one.
What do I do if it tells me that there is already an account?
A = that means you have successfully completed the SAW account creation process previously, and your SSN is linked to that account. There is no way to move forward with your new account unless you call the SAW Helpdesk to deactivate the already created one, per your request. SAW Help Desk – 855-682-0785
Signing up for our COVID action alerts at esd.wa.gov
- Find answers to common questions, an application checklist and more on our COVID page https://esd.wa.gov/newsroom/covid-19
- Apply online for unemployment insurance
- ESD is hiring! https://www.governmentjobs.com/careers/washington/esd