Disaster unemployment assistance available for South Florida residents, businesses after Irma

(WSVN) - Many residents and businesses across Florida say they lost income after Hurricane Irma hit the Sunshine State, since they couldn’t go to work in the aftermath of the storm.

Now federal disaster unemployment assistance is available to South Florida residents and business owners whose jobs were affected by the storm, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity says the deadline to file an application for disaster unemployment assistance is Oct. 16.

Applicants can qualify for aid if they meet the following criteria:

  • Worked or were self-employed, or were scheduled to begin work or self-employment;
  • Are not able to work or perform services because of physical damage or destruction to their place of employment as result of the disaster;
  • Can establish that the work or self-employment was their principal source of income;
  • Cannot perform work or self-employment because of an injury or direct result of the disaster; or
  • Became the breadwinner or major supporter of a household because of the death of the head of household.

Those who qualify for regular unemployment benefits are not eligible, the department says.

Disaster unemployment assistance is available from Sept. 10 through March 17, 2018, as long as the unemployment in that period is the result of the hurricane.

To file a claim, visit the department’s website or call (800) 385-3920.

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