Two million Americans are receiving their lastunemployment benefits checks at the end of the month. Nonetheless, the national unemployment rate is rising, increasing from 9.6 to 9.8 between October and November, and many lawmakers stand firm in their decision not to approve federal long-term assistance—a rare move by Congress given the rough economic climate. On average, 5 million unemployed workers receive emergency unemployment compensation or extended benefits, and with the expiration, household incomes stand to decrease by one-third according to the White House Economic Council. Now what? Here are five ways to cope with the ending of EUB. —ByJanel Martinez
Call your state’s unemployment office “Am I receiving all the benefits I’m entitled?” Don’t shy away from asking that question. Although your unemployment insurance benefits are up, double-check to make sure you don’t qualify for any additional benefits. Also, the office may host training programs, which can result in some form of compensation or support.
Dial-up your creditors Letting your creditors know you are currently unemployed and are actively looking for employment will lead to talks about how you can negotiate lower payments for a limited time. It’s better to do this sooner than later, as explaining your situation once you’re already behind on your payments will be much more difficult.
Lockdown a temporary or seasonal job Full-time positions are scarce; however, non-permanent or seasonal positions will give you some cash flow as well as add notches to your list of skills and build up your professional network. It can be your gateway into securing a permanent position.
Ask and you shall receive As a member of a congregation, your faith-based community may provide some type of assistance with utility bills, housing payments or various other expenses if they are able to. The monetary assistance may be at no cost to you or as a fair trade for your time. Similarly, certain private schools allow parents to volunteer during the school day in exchange for a tuition deduction. Giving up a few hours in your day or week in return for a bill paid is a small price to pay.
Go the non-profit route with ModestNeeds.com Founded in 2002 by Dr. Keith P. Taylor, Modest Needs offers three types of grants: back-to-work grants, independent living grants and self-sufficiency grants. The site offers ‘flouting maximum grants’ of up to $1000 or 7.5% of your documented, annual household income per family unit. “They provide bridge grants, basically to kind of get you through times like these,” says Kenneth L. Johnson, president of East Coast Executives (ECE). For more on unemployment benefits, read: