TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Florida residents who have lost jobs or businesses as a result of the recent weather-related disaster may be entitled to Disaster Unemployment Assistance benefits (DUA).
DUA benefits are available to unemployed individuals for up to 26 weeks from the date of the disaster declaration. The 26-week assistance period for this disaster ends September 26, 2009. Eligible residents of Calhoun, Hamilton, Holmes, Jackson, Lafayette, Liberty, Madison, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Suwannee, Walton and Washington counties must apply by June 1. Eligible residents of Dixie and Gilchrist counties must apply by June 5 and residents of Leon, Levy and Wakulla must apply by June 15.
Anyone authorized to work in this country by the U. S. Citizenship and Immigration Services may be eligible for DUA benefits.
How to Apply For DUA
For answers to questions on how to apply as well as a list of the documents required to apply, storm survivors can find information online at: www.fluidnow.com or www.floridajobs.org or by calling 800-204-2418 Monday through Friday 7:30 a.m. until 7 p.m. and Saturdays 8 a.m. until 4 p.m.
Although many workers are covered by the state's regular unemployment compensation program, those not covered may apply for DUA. This is a federally funded program that assists individuals who become unemployed as a direct result of a declared disaster and who do not qualify for regular unemployment benefits. The program also covers self-employed individuals, owners of farms and ranches, farm and ranch workers as well as fishers and others who are not normally covered by state unemployment compensation.
To be eligible for DUA benefits, the person must have been working in or residing in a county for which the disaster has been officially designated.
FEMA leads and supports the nation in a risk-based, comprehensive emergency management system of preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation, to reduce the loss of life and property and protect the nation from all hazards including natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters.