Montana Department of Labor &
Industry Acting Commissioner Brenda Nordlund today announced that Montana has
begun issuing payments for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claims filed
by self-employed, gig workers, independent contractors and others impacted by
“Getting this new system up and
running is a big step in providing relief to Montanans out of work due to the
COVID-19 outbreak. We’ve been able to provide these benefits just three weeks
after receiving federal guidance on how to administer this brand new federal
“We’re committed to ensuring everyone eligible for unemployment
assistance receives their benefits as quickly as possible.”
DLI began paying PUA benefits on
the evening of Tuesday, April 28, issuing approximately $22M in payments to
over 7,000 Montanans over the last two days. Those using direct deposit should
expect to see the funds within two to three days, if not sooner. Claimants who
receive checks should expect to see their benefits within the week.
DLI launched a new web portal to
accept PUA claims on Wednesday, April 22. Those who are self-employed,
independent contractors, gig workers, and others impacted by COVID-19 can file
online at mtpua.mt.gov. With the development of this new application, Montanans
can simply fill out their claim, request payment and follow their claim status
in one place.
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. These payments will be made for
eligible weeks beginning the UI week ending April 4 through July 25, 2020.
line is available for individuals without internet access to file their PUA
claim, or for those with claim-specific questions at (406) 444-3382. An 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 PUA filing process and other
resources is available at
Department is in the process of completing system changes to provide the
additional 13 weeks of benefits added to the end of regular UI benefits, also
implemented through the passage of the CARES Act.
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.
DLI is providing
daily updates for Montana employers and individuals impacted by COVID-19 at
dli.mt.gov/covid-19. Montanans can also follow DLI on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn for timely updates.