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Alison Doyle

The Unemployment Cliff

By November 15, 2012

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Unemployment insurance is going to fall off a cliff at the end of December.  In addition to the tax cuts which will expire, and the spending cuts that will impact government programs, federal extended unemployment benefits, which provide all long-term unemployment compensation, will expire on December 29, 2012.

In the past, when benefits were in danger of expiring, unemployment was gradually cut back and unemployed workers could continue to collect benefits until they ran out of the tier they were on.  It's different this year. If Congress fails to reauthorize the federally funded Emergency Unemployment Compensation program (EUC), no federal extended unemployment benefits will be payable to any unemployed worker effective January 1, 2013.

If the extended benefits legislation is allowed to expire, laid-off workers will only be eligible for a maximum of 26 weeks of state unemployment benefits.  Workers who are currently collecting extended unemployment benefits will stop receiving compensation effective the end of December 2012.

The National Unemployment Law Project (NELP) reports that three million unemployed workers will lose benefits in the early part of 2013.  Overall, five million unemployed workers will be unable to collect federal unemployment insurance benefits next year.

NELP has started a campaign to Renew Unemployment Insurance for 2013 to save federal emergency compensation benefits.  You can quickly and easily use the online form to ask members of Congress to renew benefits.

Video: What Will Happen With the Unemployment Extension

Read More: So What's the Deal With the Fiscal Cliff? | The Fiscal Cliff | Unemployment 2013 | Where to Get Help When Unemployment Runs Out

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November 15, 2012 at 1:46 pm
(1) Kevin P. says:

That NELP unemployment renewal campaign page has only 206 Facebook likes. We need to get the word out.

November 15, 2012 at 2:37 pm
(2) Alison Doyle, Job Search Guide says:

The words definitely needs to get out. I’m hearing from unemployed workers who still think there are 99 weeks of benefits when, in actuality, there have been cuts in the weeks provided all year.

Here’s the link to ask Congress to renew benefits for 2013:



November 15, 2012 at 6:32 pm
(3) Elizabeth B says:

Hi Alison:
I was laid off on May 25, 2012. If benefits are not extended, does that mean I will run out of benefits next month? Thanks

November 15, 2012 at 6:57 pm
(4) Alison Doyle says:

Yes, unfortunately, anyone collecting extended benefits will stop receiving unemployment at the end of the year unless Congress passes an extension.


November 23, 2012 at 4:28 pm
(5) John says:

Where can we check updates/news about UB ending in 2012?

November 23, 2012 at 4:37 pm
(6) Alison Doyle says:

I’ll update here as soon as there is news:



November 25, 2012 at 8:57 am
(7) Gail D says:

I have been unemployed since June 10, 2012. My regular benefits run out on December 9,2012. Can I apply for extended benefits until the end of the year.

November 25, 2012 at 6:40 pm
(8) Jess says:

The timing on this is like a joke. Similar to other posters, my benefits run out in the next couple of weeks, and I was hoping to extend. I was laid off from a long-time (8 years+) position back in June of 202 and have my hope in the Obama administration.

November 26, 2012 at 6:48 pm
(9) Rachel says:

I think our country is a joke if they are going to let 2 million plus people loose more then what they’ve already lost and then some and then all the additional people who have not been laid off from a job yet. Really sad I have three daughters and on my own and laid off on a government job because I was pregnant at the time and they lied to me about my FMLA it’s all corupt I swear.

November 27, 2012 at 5:21 pm
(10) Depress frustrated says:

does any one know the status of extending the extensions im going to run out of my regular claim in two weeks.. i have been busting my ass to get any jobs even min wages i havent had any luck seems god is not at my side…

November 27, 2012 at 5:44 pm
(11) Alison Doyle, Job Search Guide says:

There is still no “fiscal cliff” deal and no news on whether unemployment will be included if a deal is made, unfortunately.

November 30, 2012 at 11:44 pm
(12) Brian says:

I am also going to run out of extended benefits now being Dec 9th and I was expecting then until at least beginning of february. They say unemployment numbers are going down. Its not because people are getting jobs and that jobs are opening up. Mostly its because of benefit cuts like this time. But im tired of hearing how unemployment is decreasing when mostly it is because people are getting cut off and have nothing. Not that they got a job. Shake my head. And i voted for Obama. But mainly im hoping I get a job soon or i dont know.

December 3, 2012 at 3:53 pm
(13) Jean says:

I was laid off in August 2012 after 10+ years. Have had many interviews, but not getting anywhere. I’m in the over 50 age bracket with a disability and I’m sure that is the problem with getting hired. My EUC runs out at the end of this year and I don’t know what I’ll do. It’s hard enough living on unemployment $ as it is.

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