Tuesday, May 19, 2020 / by Ken Couture
Relief is on the way for Nevada's gig workers and independent contractors.
Starting Saturday, they can apply for unemployment benefits.
Several of these workers have shared the struggles of being out of work and not having any money coming in for several weeks.
Now, receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance, or PUA, can at least provide some level of relief.
"I need some help," said Chris Jones. "More people than me are way, way worse off."
Jones, a self-employed in Las Vegas, is slowly getting back to work after weeks of not being able to show houses in person.
"We did practice, you know, social distancing, and we also practice, by using the hand sanitizer," he said. "My company provides all my clients with hand sanitizer so they can have it on them when we're doing it."
News 3 spoke with Jones two weeks ago when he was still waiting for the new PUA system to be set up to apply.
"It seems like they've had a number of weeks to do this, and I have a lot of friends and a lot of people who are clients that are really hurting right now," he said. "I'm able to sustain because that's kind of the life of real estate.
As to why it took weeks to set up this new system, here's what the director of DETR had to say:
"Nevada is one of many states, six other states this week that are going live with our PUA implementation," said Heather Korbulic.
Starting this Saturday, independent contractors can file on the new site employnv.gov.
"W-2 or 1099 forms, tax returns, pay stubs, bank receipts, invoices, and billing statements," are the documents Korbulic says you'll need to upload while filing.
The minimum weekly benefit you can receive is around $180 and the maximum is about $470.
The unemployment office is expecting a large volume of applicants, so they're encouraging people to read the guidelines online before filing.
"I'm going to go ahead and try for it on Saturday and see what happens," said Jones.
DETR reiterates you cannot apply on the website or call the Alorica call center at 1-800-603-9681 for PUA claims until this Saturday.
The agency expects to make payments on claims sometime near May 23.
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