Dec 29, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Labor Department: Unemployment benefits won't lapse despite delay

People in line outside a food pantry in Brooklyn, New York, in November 2020.
People in line outside a food pantry in Brooklyn, New York, in November 2020. Photo: Xinhua/Michael Nagle/Wang Ying via Getty Images

The Department of Labor said Tuesday that it does not expect people claiming certain federal unemployment benefits to experience a lapse in payments, despite President Trump's delay in signing the program extensions into law, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: It was previously expected that because Trump signed the legislation the day after benefits expired, the estimated 14 million people collecting Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation benefits would miss a week of payments.

  • But because the measure extends the programs without many new changes, it will be easier for states to implement the new legislation, a Labor Department spokesman said Tuesday, per Bloomberg.

Context: Trump blindsided lawmakers last week when he indicated that he would not sign the $900 billion coronavirus relief bill and $1.4 trillion government funding measure passed by Congress if it was not amended to increase stimulus payments.

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