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As Washington DC quibbles and argues…

The Oregon Employment Department today announced that it has found a way to pay benefits to thousands of Oregonians who are out of work due to COVID-19 while they wait for their claim, or “Benefits While You Wait.” This applies to Oregonians who are waiting for their claim to be reviewed by an adjudicator to determine whether they are eligible for regular unemployment or the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program.

“We are confident this group of Oregonians are eligible for benefits because they lost their job due to COVID-19, we just don’t know which program they are eligible for yet,” said Employment Department Acting Director David Gerstenfeld. “We have found a workaround that will allow us to pay benefits while their claims are being reviewed by an adjudicator. We are grateful we have figured out a way to do this because Oregonians have been waiting too long.”

The Employment Department is proactively notifying claimants who have been identified to fall into this group via email and robo calls. 

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