As you are probably aware, the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program which provides unemployment assistance to self-employed and Independent Contractors went “live” today. The state is accepting pre-applications at the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance website https://pua.hawaii.gov/_/.
If you were 100% self-employed or a 1099 IC in 2019, the PUA pre-application is pretty straight forward.
For anyone who also had W2 employment in 2019 and received a paycheck where taxes were taken out, you may hit a roadblock. The PUA application will ask you: “Did you earn more than $130.00 of employment income from employer(s) who took taxes out of your paycheck in 2019?” If you answer “yes” to this, you will be asked to apply for Regular Unemployment. The Initial Claim Form can be found at https://labor.hawaii.gov/. There is a screenshot below that shows you what you might experience.
If you apply for and are denied Regular Unemployment, you can then apply for PUA indicating “yes” to “Do you have a denied unemployment claim?”
I hope this is helpful to those of you planning to apply for assistance.
Kehaulani Costa, RCE