New Jersey residents can get unemployment benefits for 5 months more

“There is a trigger in the unemployment law that most states have hit at this point now because of the high unemployment over three months in a row. This was not part of the CARES Act. This was already occurring. This is separate from the CARES Act extension,” explained New Jersey Labor Commissioner Robert Asaro-Angelo.

He said there’s nothing you need to do if you are already receiving unemployment, and those weeks will automatically roll into your eligibility period.

Those on the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program — which is for independent contractors and gig workers — only get an additional seven weeks.

“That program is set up for 39 weeks off the bat, out of the CARES Act,” Asaro-Angelo said. 

But labor officials warn you can only receive the cash if you have lost your job, can’t find another one, or have a coronavirus-related issue such as caring for a sick relative or health issues of your own.

“We are looking at those things very seriously, we don’t want anyone to be put into a harmful environment,” Asaro-Angelo added. 

Pennsylvania's benefit weeks will extend 13 weeks.