Montana Department of Labor &
Industry Commissioner Brenda Nordlund today announced Montana's self-employed,
independent contractors, gig workers, and others not eligible for regular
Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits can begin filing claims for Pandemic
Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits expanded under the recently passed CARES
new web portal is now live and ready to process claims for self-employed
Montanans. Our state boasts a high rate of entrepreneurialism, which means
these benefits will help a wide swath of Montanans,”
Nordlund said. “We’re focused on
getting unemployment assistance in the hands of those that need it as quickly
as possible and this new technology is a big step in helping Montanans during
this time of uncertainty.”
are self-employed, independent contractors, gig workers, and others impacted by
the coronavirus are now able to file online at mtpua.mt.gov. DLI had previously
directed those that are self-employed to start a claim at MontanaWorks.gov.
Those individuals will receive correspondence directing them to the new PUA web
system. With this new application, Montanans are now able to simply fill out
their claim, request payment and follow their claim status in one place.
expects to start issuing payments under this program to approved claimants
within the next 10 days. Eligible claimants may receive payments backdated to
the week of March 15, consistent with the onset of local and state social
distancing directives, school closures and Governor Bullock’s “Stay at Home”
conjunction with this morning’s web portal roll-out, a new phone line is
available for individuals without internet access to file their PUA claim, or
for those with claim-specific questions at (406) 444-3382. A new email address
is also available to those with questions at
PUAclaims@mt.gov. A resource guide with answers to
frequently asked questions, details on the new filing process and other
resources is available at
Programs included in the CARES Act
Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC)
– Provides an additional $600 per week to any
individual eligible for any of the Unemployment Compensation programs.
This benefit is retroactive for those who had a claim
beginning the UI filing week of March 29 through April 4, 2020.
Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC)
- Allows for an additional 13 weeks of benefits added
to the end of regular unemployment benefits. This means claimants may collect
unemployment benefits for a longer period of time than under normal
unemployment benefits to those not ordinarily eligible for them, including the
CARES Act legislation, those eligible for PUA benefits, are also eligible for
the additional $600 per week stimulus payment. The payment is added to the
recipient’s state weekly benefit amount. The payments will be made for eligible
weeks beginning the UI week ending April 4 through July 25, 2020.
Department must finish system changes before it can implement the additional 13
weeks of benefits added to the end of regular unemployment benefits under the
DLI is encouraging anyone who
believes they may be eligible for UI to file a claim online at
MontanaWorks.gov, or at mtpua.mt.gov for those that fall under the
PUA eligibility guidelines.
In addition to the expansion of UI
benefits under the CARES Act,
Governor Bullock has issued
directives to waive the one-week waiting period
to minimize the time Montanans
await UI benefits, and waived the requirement that claimants search for a job
during this time.
providing daily updates for Montana employers and individuals impacted by
dli.mt.gov/covid-19. Montanans can also follow DLI on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn for timely updates.