According to News Center Maine, the Maine Dept. of Labor recommends waiting to file your unemployment claim until later today (Wednesday) when Gov. Mills signs emergency unemployment legislation.

Many are feeling the strain of COVID-19 as it impacts employment here in Maine. The virus has forced closures and layoffs across our state, and the new emergency legislation will extend eligibility of unemployment benefits.

It will also waive the one-week waiting period.

If you file before midnight Saturday you'll receive benefits for the entire week. If you've filed already, you'll have a one-week waiting period since the emergency legislation hasn't kicked in yet.

The Economic Injury Disaster Loans Program will provide up to $2 million dollars to small businesses in our state.

Maine's emergency unemployment benefits will cover situations that aren't usually covered, including:

  • Your employer temporarily having to close due to COVID-19
  • Being quarantined but expecting to return to work when the quarantine ends
  • Leaving work due to risk of exposure or infection
  • Leaving work to take care of a family member

The legislation also waives the one-week waiting period so that benefits start immediately and ensures that claims for UI won't affect an employer's experience rating.

Go to to file your claim

Here's what you'll need to set up your account:

  • your social security number
  • your birth date
  • choose a user name
  • choose a password

Here's what you'll need to file:

  • Your social security number
  •  Alien Registration Number, if applicable
  • The business name, address and telephone number of each place you've worked at over the past 18 months
  • The jobs you held and the dates you worked for each employer within the 18-month period

You can file for unemployment in Maine if:

  • You have worked in the state of Maine or served in the military within the past 18 months
  • You have not filed a claim for unemployment benefits against another state in the past 12 months

You will come to a line that asks your reason for filing, fill that in with "lack of work".

Spread the word and forward this post to friends and family who might now qualify for Maine unemployment benefits because of the emergency legislation.

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