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Workers who are involuntarily dismissed from employment due to the COVID-19 pandemic may apply for unemployment benefits if they meet the eligibility requirements

As a worker, would you feel deeply worried about the livelihood of your family if you are involuntarily dismissed from employment due to business closure of your employer as a result of the pandemic? The Bureau of Labor Insurance (BLI) stated that if an insured person was laid off due to business closure, dissolution, losses, business contractions, and other situations of the insured unit, it was an involuntary separation from employment under the Employment Insurance Act. As long as the insured person meets the eligibility requirements of unemployment benefits, he/she could apply for the benefits.

The BLI further explained that if the insured person had participated in the employment insurance for a total of 1 year or more within 3 years before the involuntary separation and withdrawal from insurance, and had the ability to work and the willingness to continue working, he/she can bring the proof of employment separation issued by the insured unit, national ID card, and other materials to a public employment service institution to register for job placement and apply for unemployment benefits in person. When failing to make job referral or vocational training arrangements within 14 days, the public employment service institution shall, on the next day, issue a letter of unemployment confirmation and forward the relevant unemployment benefits application documents to the BLI to grant unemployment benefits.

The unemployment benefits shall be 60% of the insured person’s average monthly insurance salary in the six-month period before employment separation and withdrawal from insurance, and may be paid for up to six months. In the event that the insured person is 45 years old or above when separated from employment and withdrawn from insurance or has proof of disability impairment issued by the social welfare authority, the unemployment benefits may be extended to a maximum of nine months. Furthermore, during the period when an applicant is receiving unemployment benefits, an extra 10% shall be added to the unemployment benefits for each one of the insured person’s dependents: non-working spouse, minor children, or children with mental or physical impairment. The said extra benefits shall be given for up to two dependents. In other words, the applicant may receive up to 80% of the average monthly insurance salary as the unemployment benefits. When submitting the application for unemployment benefits to the public employment service institution, the worker only needs to provide the information of his/her dependents in the application form, in the meantime attach a copy of the dependent’s household certificate or other personal identity documents to complete the procedures.

The BLI specially reminded that workers who wish to continue receiving unemployment benefits must go to the public employment service institutions to apply for unemployment re-certification in person every month.
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Last Update:2021-10-19