Delaware Expands Unemployment for Workers Affected By COVID-19

April 1, 2020Alerts

Following Gov. Carney’s State of Emergency declaration, the Secretary of Labor of the State of Delaware issued new guidelines to enhance the availability of unemployment insurance benefits to COVID-19 affected workers who would not typically quality for benefits. 

Unemployment benefits now cover workers who:

  • are ordered by a medical doctor to self-quarantine as a result of exposure or risk of exposure to COVID-19 (the stay-at-home order does not qualify as a self-quarantine by a medical doctor)
  • are forced to quit or take unpaid leave to care for a child as a result of the Governor’s emergency closure of schools
  • are forced to quit or take unpaid leave to care for a loved one who has contracted COVID-19
  • fall ill to COVID-19 and are unable to work
  • experience a decrease in hours or earnings due to the Governor’s State of Emergency

Importantly, part-time workers may be eligible for benefits if they meet one of the above categories.

Additionally, work search requirements have been eased.  In some cases, a claimant who files for unemployment benefits as a result of COVID-19 need not continue to search for work during the State of Emergency. The state has also eased requirements for mandatory appointments, training programs, and re-employment service appointment and workshops.

The Delaware Department of Labor has committed to processing unemployment benefits as quickly as possible. The one-week waiting period has been waived. The DDOL hopes to provide benefits to claimants within a week of processing the claim, though it is important to note that other states have seen a bank up in processing due to the volume of new claims.

We will continue to provide updates on new legislation as it becomes available. For more information on this alert, please contact Chaney Hall at 302-622-4276 or [email protected] or any member of the firm’s national Labor & Employment Department.