Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC) is a program under the Consolidated Appropriations Act (CAA) of 2021 that provides additional income to eligible individuals who receive at least $5,000 a year in self-employment income now will receive an additional $100 weekly benefit, in addition to the benefit amounts they otherwise would be entitled to receive from traditional employment under state law. It is funded by the federal government, not by state unemployment taxes paid by employers. Previously, such individuals were not eligible for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits if they received some regular state unemployment benefits for traditional employment, and regular state law benefits did not consider self-employment in calculating the benefit amounts. The new federally-funded “mixed earner” benefit is in addition to the $300 supplemental weekly benefit under Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC), and also expires on June 12, 2021.
Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation (MEUC):
$100/wk payable week ending Jan 2, 2021 through week ending June 12, 2021
- Individual earned at least $5000 in self-employment income “in most recent taxable year ending prior to the individual's application for regular UC.”
- Individual eligible to receive at least $1.00 in underlying benefits for claimed week to receive full $100.
- Individuals receiving PUA are not eligible for MEUC.
- Claimants must provide documentation to prove the self-employment income.
- The documentation requirements are still being reviewed based on US DOL guidelines.
- If you knowingly make or cause another person to make a false statement or knowingly fail or cause another person to fail to disclose a material fact and, as a result, receive PUA to which you are not entitled, you will be subject to prosecution under 19 section 1001 of title 18, United States Code.
- Quitting work without good cause to obtain UI benefits is fraud under PUA.
- If, for reasons unrelated to COVID-19, you quit your job without good cause, are terminated for misconduct or refuse to work when work is available, you will be disqualified for benefits from any of the state or federal programs currently available. This means that in order to receive state or federal unemployment benefits, you must not take any action that causes you to be out of work that is unrelated to COVID-19.
- Intentional misrepresentation in the reporting of earnings earned during a given week on one’s continued weekly claim for unemployment insurance can result in finding of fraud, a disqualification from benefits, and an overpayment of benefits, in addition to other penalties and potential criminal prosecution.
OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION FOR CLAIMANTS
- Child support obligations must be deducted from PUA payments in the same way that they are to regular unemployment insurance benefits.
- PUA payments are taxable. These payments will be included on your 1099-G that you receive for the 2020 tax year. Taxes will be withheld from PUA payments if you have elected to have taxes withheld from your unemployment insurance benefits.
INFORMATION FOR EMPLOYERS
- Employers will not be charged for benefits paid to employees receiving PUA.
- If you have offered work to employees as the pandemic ends and your employee refuses to return to work, you must notify Iowa Workforce Development here: https://www.iowaworkforcedevelopment.gov/job-offer-decline-form-employers
- Employers should ensure they are current and timely in filing quarterly unemployment insurance taxes so their employees receive benefits as quickly as possible.
- Employers should respond to all Notice of Claims (65-5317) or SIDES notifications if a claim is filed for someone that is not working due to a reason other than COVID-19.
- Employers should respond to the Notice of Claim (65-5317) or SIDES notification to report any paid sick leave or other paid leave benefits.