How to Extend Unemployment Insurance Beyond 26 Weeks


Unemployment Insurance (UI) offers workers 26 weeks of initial benefits but compensation can be extended for up to a year through two 13-week extensions.

The 13-week extensions are not automatic! UI claimants need to apply and fill out an application to receive extended support.

There are two extension programs available:  Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) and Extended Benefits. Workers who filed for UI due to the COVID-19 public health emergency first need to apply for PEUC.

The extensions currently do not apply to workers receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA), which lasts a total of 39 weeks.

Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation

If you started receiving UI on or after July 1, 2019 and have collected benefits for 26 weeks, you are eligible for the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) 13-week extension.

You can apply for PEUC at the end of your initial 26 benefit weeks by going to and following the prompts.

PEUC will provide the same weekly amount you received from UI, unless your income has changed while on UI. These benefits are available for up to 13 weeks, until December 26, 2020.

Extended Benefits

If you have exhausted both your initial 26 weeks of UI benefits and your 13-week PEUC extension, you are eligible for an additional 13 weeks of benefits through the Extended Benefits (EB) program.

You will receive the same weekly amount you received through UI and PEUC, unless your income has changed. EB will be available for as long as unemployment levels in the District remain higher than normal.

Apply for EB at the end of the 13-week PEUC extension by going to and following the prompts.

Additional info is available on the Councilmember’s website here, including a Spanish and Amharic version of the Fact Sheet.