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COVID-19 Recession in Texas

Texas’ unemployment system is confusing and frustrating. Here’s how to navigate it.

People across Texas are struggling to navigate a maze-like system to get unemployment benefits. Gov. Greg Abbott announced Texas was opting out of some federal assistance programs, which now end June 26. Here are the answers to the most common questions about getting benefits from the Texas Workforce Commission.

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We’ve found that easily accessible, up-to-date information about unemployment benefits can be hard to find in one place. 

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How does the March 2021 coronavirus relief package affect my benefits? 

You can now claim unemployment benefits for a greater amount of time

You should receive $300 extra per week through June 26

Some self-employed workers who also earn W-2 wages may get an additional boost

If you have received $10,000 in unemployment benefits during the pandemic, you should receive a tax break

Do I qualify for unemployment benefits?

What kind of benefits am I eligible for? 

Regular unemployment benefits:

Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA):

Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC):

There are so many terms and acronyms. What do they all mean?

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I can’t get through to the TWC. How do I get in touch?

I did not apply for benefits until a week or more after I lost my job.  Do I still qualify?

What do I need to know about work search requirements?

What counts as a work search?

If you are on regular unemployment, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) or Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC):

If you are on Extended Benefits (EB):

How do I do a work search if I’m self-employed?

Is anyone exempt from work searches?

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How do I know what kind of unemployment aid I’m receiving?

What can I do if my unemployment claim is denied? 

How do I file an appeal?

What happens during the appeals hearing?

If I disagree with the decision TWC makes about my appeal, do I have any other options?

I’ve been told I owe money to the state. What do I do?

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I’ve started working again but not full time. Can I continue getting unemployment benefits? 

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I returned to work after filing for benefits, but I’m out of work again. What do I do?

What happens when I run out of my benefits?

Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC)

Extended Benefits (EB)

While on an extension, will I get the same amount of money each week as I did while on regular benefits?

How do I know if I’m on an extension?

I feel like I’ve tried everything and I still can’t get my claim sorted out. What can I do?

What other resources can help me through this process?

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