Gov. Ricketts issues order to loosen unemployment eligibility

Posted at 6:33 PM, Mar 17, 2020

LINCOLN, Neb. (KMTV) — Amid federal guidelines to limit exposure to the coronavirus, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts issued an executive order to "loosen unemployment insurance eligibility requirements."

The governor's executive order will waive the following requirements for claims filed between March 22 and May 2:

  • Work Search - This change applies to all workers filing for unemployment. While many job search efforts are conducted online, waiving the requirement to search for work is in line with the social distancing practices that are needed to limit the spread of COVID-19 and potential exposure to the disease. The change will also accommodate those workers who are temporarily impacted by COVID-19, including those who are in an unpaid status due to a shutdown, quarantine, or because they are caring for a family member due to illness or a facility closure.
  • Unpaid Waiting Week - This change will make the first week of eligibility payable rather than an unpaid waiting week and will help all unemployment recipients get their payments sooner.
  • Employer charging - Unemployment benefits are typically paid with contributions from employers. NDOL will temporarily waive charges incurred by employers whose team members are filing claims related to COVID-19. Nebraska has a healthy Trust Fund that will be utilized to pay for unemployment benefits tied to COVID-19.

In addition, Rickett's office said the Department of Labor will "continue to look at ways to streamline the process of filing for and receiving unemployment insurance benefits as the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve."

If you want to file for unemployment benefits, you can do so at

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