Disaster unemployment assistance available following Hurricane Laura

Published 6:11 pm Friday, September 18, 2020

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BATON ROUGE, La. – Disaster Unemployment Assistance is available to certain workers who lost income as a direct result of Hurricane Laura in Louisiana.

The purpose of DUA is to help workers whose primary incomes are lost or interrupted by a federally declared disaster. It differs from regular state unemployment insurance because it also provides benefits to people who are self-employed, farmers, loggers and employees who work on commission.

DUA benefits apply to weeks of unemployment beginning Aug. 23, 2020 up to Feb. 27, 2021 if the individual’s unemployment continues to be a direct result of the disaster.

Affected workers in the 21 parishes designated for disaster assistance in Louisiana must first apply for regular unemployment insurance. The parishes are Acadia, Allen, Beauregard, Caddo, Calcasieu, Cameron, Grant, Jackson, Jefferson Davis, La Salle, Lincoln, Morehouse, Natchitoches, Ouachita, Rapides, Sabine, St. Landry, Union, Vermilion, Vernon and Winn.

The Louisiana Workforce Commission notifies claimants if they are eligible to file for disaster unemployment assistance.

Applicants can apply by visiting www.laworks.net, the Helping Individuals Reach Employment portal.

Claimants may also file by telephone by calling the Benefits Analysis Team at 866-783-5567 from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. from Monday through Friday and 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday.

Applicants in Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, Jefferson Davis and Vernon parishes must apply for disaster unemployment assistance by Wednesday, Sept. 30.

Applicants in Acadia, Grant, Jackson, Lincoln, Natchitoches, Ouachita, Rapides, Sabine, Vermillion and Winn parishes must complete applications by Friday, Oct. 2.

Applicants in Morehouse and Union parishes must apply for disaster unemployment assistance by Monday, Oct. 12.

The Louisiana Workforce Commission is also accepting applications for DUA from applicants in Caddo, La Salle and St. Landry parishes until Wednesday, Oct. 14.

For the latest information on Hurricane Laura, visit www.fema.gov/disaster/4559 or follow the FEMA Region 6 Twitter account at twitter.com/FEMARegion6.