Washington Unemployed Loosing 26 Weeks of Benefits

In total, the maximum weeks of unemployment benefits will drop from 99 to 73 for most eligible workers.

“The good news, if any is here, is that our unemployment rate is getting better,” said Sheryl Hutchison, a spokeswoman for the Employment Security Department. However, she noted that “the loss of these benefits will make the situation a lot more urgent for families around the state.”

Officials estimate that approximately 12,500 unemployed workers will lose benefits immediately when extended benefits end on April 21. More than 11,000 workers will exhaust their emergency benefits within eight weeks after April 21. Another 40,000 people could run out of unemployment benefits during the final six months of the year.

The department said that currently, about 175,000 people are claiming either regular, emergency or extended benefits each week. About 76,000 people in the state have claimed all of their available unemployment benefits to date.

Those who are still unemployed and claiming long-term benefits will soon be receiving notices from the department informing them of the change.