Partial Unemployment Formula Changes
New York provides unemployment assistance not just when workers are laid off, but also when a worker’s hours are reduced. The calculation of benefits for part-time unemployment assistance used to be based on the number of days worked during the week, without regard to number of hours worked or the amount earned.
To make the system fairer, the Legislature passed and the Governor signed two bills (A2355/S1042A and A7959/S7148) to replace the days worked-based calculation with a calculation that will take into account both hours worked and earnings to more fairly calculate benefits. The full transition to this new calculation is not scheduled to take place until early 2022.In the interim, part-time unemployment benefits are being calculated based on hours worked.When fully implemented, benefits for part-time unemployment assistance will be calculated based on hours worked and the amount earned.
Targeted Use of Partial Unemployment and Promoting Shared Use
In the wake of massive job losses beginning last year, additional reforms are needed to further support workers needs when there are layoffs and to make sure the system operates in a fair and meaningful way. Two bills which passed both houses of the Legislature this year, A7373/S17 and A7353/S18, improve partial unemployment assistance that support shared work programs by providing for targeted use of partial unemployment insurance by employers to avoid laying off workers.
Hopefully, both bills will be signed by the Governor soon.