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Department of Labor issues clarification with regard to unemployment claimants who inactivated their eligibility

BALTIMORE, MD—Maryland Department of Labor Secretary Tiffany P. Robinson on Tuesday provided the following update regarding the state’s unemployment portal:

“At Governor Hogan’s direction, we have taken every necessary step to improve the performance of the BEACON One-Stop unemployment insurance application in a matter of days. Claimants experienced zero to minimal wait times on the site on Sunday and Monday, despite the record volume of traffic.

“During the past two days, over 201,000 Marylanders have filed their weekly claim certifications. On Sunday alone, the site processed 141,000 weekly claim certifications, with claimants filing an average of 5,800 weekly certifications every hour. This is more than double the 65,000 weekly claim certifications that were processed last Sunday, April 26. We continue to enhance our capacity, and expect to build on this progress in the days ahead.

“As a result of our efforts, Maryland is now the only state that has a comprehensive system to allow all eligible claimants to apply online in one place. While piecemeal guidance from the federal administration continues to provide challenges to administering the new CARES Act programs, we are working to alleviate any confusion for our customers.

“For instance, federal guidance has required states to capture additional information from claimants as they complete their weekly claim certification. Marylanders found these new required questions to be confusing, resulting in numerous claimants inactivating their eligibility for unemployment benefits.

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“In response to the feedback we received from claimants, our department has implemented an automated solution to reactivate these claims and prevent benefit payments from being interrupted. Marylanders with a claim that became inactive last week can now login to their BEACON One-Stop account to file their weekly claim certification like normal. Those with a claim that became inactive this Sunday or Monday after filing their weekly claim certification will also have their claim automatically reactivated, but do not need to refile this week’s claim certification.

“As issues arise, we are working as quickly as we can to resolve them. Nothing is more important to us than ensuring that all eligible Marylanders receive the benefits they need and deserve as soon as possible.”

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