There are exemptions for individuals facing differing work situations, including ex-service members, federal employees, workers undergoing effects from a natural disaster, and education workers.
A partnership between the Secretary of Labor and state unemployment insurance agencies require the same state entities to administer benefits for federal civilian employees and for ex-servicemembers as agents of the United States government. The Unemployment Compensation for Ex-service members (UCX) provides unemployment insurance protection to ex-servicemembers who meet certain criteria. Eligibility requirements can be found here. If an ex-servicemember is eligible for coverage, the state unemployment insurance agency oversees compensation administration. This program also covers former members of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA.)
The Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE) is the state-administered program unemployed Federal civilian workers can apply to in order to receive unemployment benefits. The UCFE program is administered by state unemployment insurance agencies acting as agents of the Federal government. The program is operated under the same terms and conditions that apply to regular state unemployment insurance. In general, the law of the state in which an individual’s official duty station for Federal civilian service is in will be the state law under which an individual’s eligibility for benefits is determined. In the event of a Federal government shutdown, Federal employees may be eligible for Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees (UCFE).
The Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA), authorized by the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act of 1974, provides financial assistance to individuals whose employment or self-employment has been lost or interrupted as a direct result of a major disaster and who are not also eligible for regular unemployment insurance benefits. The U.S. Department of Labor oversees the DUA program and coordinates with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to provide the funds to the state unemployment agencies for payment of DUA benefits and payment of state administration costs under agreements with the Secretary of Labor.
There is a specific provision in federal law that applies to education workers who want to apply for unemployment benefits. This provision prohibits states from distributing unemployment insurance benefits to instructional employees of certain educational institutions between academic terms if they a have a contract for, or “reasonable assurance” of, employment in the second term. This provision does not define educational institutions, leaving states discretion within this classification. In 2016, the United States Government Accountability Office issued a report on various factors that can affect head start and other early childhood teachers’ eligibility for benefits during summer break.
How is this program different than other programs that aim to do similar functions?