Today, the Connecticut Department of Labor began accepting claim applications for the self-employed, many who are eligible to collect unemployment insurance benefits under the federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program.
“Our agency is proud of the work it has accomplished in order to serve the self-employed – individuals who have not been eligible to apply for unemployment benefits in the past, but are now facing workplace situations never seen prior to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said State Labor Commissioner Kurt Westby. “The new online ReEmployCT system meets mandated integrity requirements while providing a federally-required two-step application process.”
Federal guidelines require that self-employed individuals, including independent contractors and “gig” workers, first apply through the Connecticut unemployment system located on www.filectui.com. Applicants must receive a determination notice in the mail from the Connecticut Department of Labor before they can apply on the newly-designed Pandemic Unemployment Assistance online system that will also be located at www.filect.com.
Self-employed individuals will follow this two-step application process:
Step 1). Beginning April 30:
- File a regular state claim application with the Connecticut Department of Labor at www.filectui.com, using the BLUE button to file. NOTE: Self-employed individuals who already filed a claim application through this system SHOULD NOT file again. The agency has these original claims and a duplicate is not needed.
- After completing and submitting your application, look for an email from CTDOL: “Thank you for submitting your online application for unemployment compensation benefits with the Connecticut Department of Labor. … Please look for a CONFIRMATION EMAIL notifying you that your claim has been processed. This email will include your NEXT STEPS information including instructions for when to start filing your weekly claims.
- Look for a second email from CTDOL: “Your claim for benefits has been processed! If this is a new claim then we are sending information regarding your claim via US mail.”
- Look for your eligibility determination (Form UC-58 Monetary Determination) that must be sent through the US mail service.
- If the UC-58 Monetary Determination shows that you have a “zero” weekly benefit rate (which means you do not have wage earnings in the state system) you are not eligible for state benefits and are eligible to file in the ReEmployCT system for self-employed individuals.
- If the UC-58 Monetary Determination shows a weekly benefit rate, you have wage earnings in the state system and are entitled to collect state unemployment benefits.
Step 2). Once You Receive Your UC-58 in the Mail:
- Go to CTDOL www.filectui.com for the link to PUA button.
- The PUA system will have a record of your state benefit ineligibility status.
- Complete the PUA application –
- Applicants will need 2019 IRS forms, 1099, 2019 W-2s, and Schedule C. Applicants will be asked to provide earnings for 2019, broken down by quarters. Those without tax records for 2019 can self-attest their earnings, but will be subject to audit.
- Applicants will be asked the date when COVID-19 impacted their employment. Federal guidelines allow this to go back to Feb. 2, 2020. If an unemployed status goes back to retroactive weeks, the system asks the claimant for weekly earnings through the current week filing.
- Once the PUA application is completed, if applicants did not select a payment method when filing under the state unemployment system, they will select their method of payment (direct deposit or debit card – the agency recommends direct deposit for much faster payment). Payment selection is made by returning to www.filectui.com and selecting the “method of payment” green button.
FAQs located on the agency’s homepage are being updated to include a section on the PUA application process, guidelines and additional details.
“With hard work and determination, our agency has been able to process many of the 430,000 state applications received in the past six weeks, and we continue to work on responding to customers with questions about their claim or the unemployment process,” Westby noted. “We recognize the important role unemployment benefits play in helping our residents weather the pandemic, and we are committed to providing the best service possible during this crisis.”
Posted by the Chamber of Commerce – Eastern Connecticut, April 30, 2020