Tennessee Reinstates Unemployment Benefit for Dependent Children

The Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development on Friday announced that the state will continue to provide additional unemployment benefits to eligible claimants with dependent children through Dec. 31, 2013.

The department announced its intention to end the benefits based on state legislation that was passed earlier this year as a result of one-time federal funding that was no longer available. The U.S. Department of Labor’s (USDOL) State Conformity and Compliance team previously gave the state guidance that ending the additional dependent benefits would not affect other funds but now says that ending the additional benefits would risk the loss of funds paying for extended federal benefits called Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC). Continuing the additional benefit for approximately 12,000 claimants keeps another 22,000 Tennesseans from immediately losing their federal unemployment benefits.

In 2009, Tennessee received one-time federal funds in the amount of $141,808,031 as an incentive grant under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to strengthen the rapidly depleting Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund. As a result, beginning in 2010, eligible unemployment insurance claimants supporting minor children began receiving an additional allowance to their weekly unemployment benefit amount.

At the end of December 2013 the Federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation program will expire.