AUSTIN - The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) announced Thursday that due to the state's improving unemployment rate, Texas is no longer eligible for Tier III of federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC). Federal legislation recently extended the EUC program until Jan. 1, 2014. However, the week ending Jan. 5, 2013 was the last week in which Texas EUC claimants could exhaust Tier II EUC and establish a Tier III claim beginning Jan. 6, 2013.
Texas was notified by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that the state's three-month average unemployment rate fell below 7 percent, the mandated rate for Tier III EUC eligibility. TWC will begin paying EUC at a new maximum rate of 28 weeks beginning with the week ending Jan. 12, 2013. TWC previously administered up to 37 weeks of EUC.
"Texas employers have added 278,800 jobs over the past 12 months, and the unemployment rate is the lowest it has been since December 2008," said TWC Chairman Andres Alcantar. "TWC and the 28 local workforce boards remain committed to providing quality services to help connect job seekers to employment."
Individuals who exhaust EUC Tier II benefits beginning with week ending January 12 or after will be affected by the EUC Tier III deadline. TWC estimates approximately 26,500 EUC Tier II filers will not be eligible for additional weeks of EUC Tier III benefits.
Approximately 7,000 claimants already receiving EUC Tier III will not be affected by the Jan. 5, 2013 deadline. Additionally, those who exhausted EUC Tier II before Jan. 5, 2013 may be eligible to receive EUC Tier III benefits.
The total maximum weeks of Unemployment Insurance benefits now available to an individual in Texas is 54 weeks, down from 63 weeks.
For more information, to update contact information or to check the status of benefits, claimants may visit the TWC website. Reemployment services are available through local Workforce Solutions Offices statewide, or job seekers may visit www.WorkInTexas.com to register and search for job postings.