AUGUSTA — The Maine Department of Labor has extended the date when unemployed Mainers who are permanently separated from their employer must start searching for work to August 9.
Under Maine law, all unemployment claimants are required to show that they are actively seeking work in order to receive benefits. This requirement had been temporarily waived at the start of the pandemic.
Starting with the weekly certification for the week of Aug. 9, all claimants will need to either provide information on their work search activity, or attest that they are self-employed or still connected with their employer.
Prior to the requirement being reinstated, the Department will post screenshots of what the additional weekly certification page will look like on its website and identify the questions claimants will be required to answer.
All unemployment claimants required to actively search for work must create an account on the Maine JobLink: joblink.maine.gov/ada/r/. JobLink is a free job search tool, where claimants can upload their resumes and employers can post their job openings.
Those who are still connected to an employer are not required to actively search for other work until after Sept. 5. However, they must still be able and available to work for that employer if recalled.
If an employer has offered work to an employee and that employee refused the work, the employer should notify the Department. A fact-finding can be held to determine if there was good cause for the refusal of work. If no good cause is determined, then the claimant would no longer be eligible for unemployment benefits.
Employers can report refusals of work here: maine.gov/unemployment/ucbr.
The Department encourages all claimants to create a Maine JobLink account, update their resume, and explore online CareerCenter services. The Maine JobLink and CareerCenter services can be found here: www.mainecareercenter.gov.