Changes in Unemployment Benefits for Michigan Workers

In the wake of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act being signed into law, Governor Whitmer signed an agreement between Michigan and the U.S. Dept. of Labor to implement Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and Compensation programs.


The agreement allows workers who do not already qualify for state unemployment to receive benefits. These workers include self-employed, 1099-independent contractors, gig, and low-wage workers who are no longer able to work because of the coronavirus pandemic.


Weekly benefits for all unemployed workers were also increased by $600 a week and extended from 26 to 39 weeks.


Important Notes:

  • If someone has already applied for unemployment benefits, you DO NOT need to reapply at this time.
  • Self-Employed Workers, Gig Workers, 1099-Independent Contractors and Low-Wage workers – SHOULD NOT APPLY AT THIS TIME. Applications will be open in the next few days.


The Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency will provide more details in the coming days.


Michigan Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) Implements New Filing Schedule

To reduce the overload on the current unemployment system, the UIA is recommending the following:


  • If you have a computer and the internet, please use the website, not the phone system, to apply for benefits:
  • Log onto the website during off-hours for easier access. Either late at night or very early in the morning.
  • Please be patient. If the page is loading slowly, DO NOT refresh. Give it a few minutes to load.
  • View the online tool kit and frequently asked questions before you apply to ensure that you have the appropriate information and documents you will need on hand.
  • If you must use the Call Center, please observe the alphabetical system outlined on the UIA website.


To learn more about unemployment benefits or the alphabetical filing schedule, visit the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity’s website.


Any accounting, business, or tax advice contained in this communication, including attachments and links to outside sources, is not intended as a thorough analysis of specific issues, nor a substitute for a formal opinion, nor was it written to be used to avoid tax related penalties.

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