For much of April, there was a five-to-six week backlog to process claims, though the Department of Labor said Tuesday that the backlog is now down to just three weeks. A spokesperson for the department says they are hopeful to reduce the backlog down to just a week come this weekend, and that the agency is enhancing its program to handle more complex claims.
On an average week, the department receives around 3,000 claims per week, and processes each take in one to three days.
From when to file weekly claims to whether you can get an extension, your Connecticut unemployment questions answered » “I think that’s going to put a very big dent into the group of claims we haven’t processed yet,” said Kurt Westby, the commissioner of the Department of Labor. “We’re optimistic to bring down that five-to-six week wait down to one week as soon as we can.”
The agency still expects two new benefits to begin by the end of the month. The Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation, which is a $600 weekly stimulus added to the state’s usual unemployment benefits, will begin the week of April 27. The department will begin accepting applications for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance for those that are self-employed by April 30.
Both benefits will be paid out retroactively to the date filed.
“This tsunami has just overwhelmed everything we have, just as it has with many, many states,” said Westby. “I can only say [to claimants], be patient ... yes, there is a lag, and I know any person who is out of work is in a crisis. We’re working all day, overtime, weekends, holidays to rectify the situation. Just be patient.”
You can call the following numbers for information about unemployment benefits: 203-809-9847; 203-892-6036; 203-723-3817; 203-723-3818; 203-723-3820; 203-723-3821. In Spanish: 203-723-3819; 203-450-9268; 203-548-7322