These States Will Be Hit the Hardest When This Unemployment Benefit Ends

Residents of these 10 states will suffer most as the $600 federal supplement dries up.

If you're one of millions of workers laid off as a result of the pandemic, you know firsthand just how crucial every dollar of your unemployment benefit can be. For many Americans, the extra $600 supplement tacked on to the standard unemployment package has been the difference between sinking or swimming during these turbulent times.

As of July 25, this bonus benefit has officially dried up, and Americans will need to tighten their belts to survive on their home state's unemployment benefit alone. This means that residents of some states will fare far better than others, with some citizens barely scraping by. According to an analysis by the career site Zippia, these are the 10 states that will be hit the hardest as the employment stimulus comes to an end. And for more on how pandemic benefits could impact you, check out If You Make More Than This, You May Not Get a Second Stimulus Check.


Historic Michigan Theater, built in 1928, located on East Liberty St in Downtown, Ann Arbor

Michigan tops the list as one of the hardest-hit states, with a maximum weekly benefit of just $362 (Massachusetts, for reference, caps out at $1,220). The state reportedly has the 6th worst unemployment rate in the nation, with at least 15 percent of its population currently out of work as a result of the pandemic.


miami florida from above

Florida performs even worse than Michigan, with a lower maximum weekly benefit of just $275, and a shorter duration of eligibility at just 25 weeks. For those that lost their jobs at the start of the pandemic, this means time is quickly running out. And find out how coronavirus is dividing the country: A Harvard Dcotor Just shared a Dark Coronavirus Prediction for the Fall.


downtown phoenix arizona

Arizona is finally righting itself after a major coronavirus outbreak, but the current state of unemployment benefits aren't helping matters much. The state's maximum weekly benefits are a measly $240 for a total of 39 weeks, and 10 percent of Arizonans currently find themselves without a job.


Photo of scenic and wildlife viewing tour in Glacier Bay, Alaska.

Even before the pandemic, Alaska reportedly struggled with higher than average unemployment rates due to variations in seasonal work, high rural unemployment, and the slowing pace of the oil and gas industries. Now, even more residents will need to file for benefits, which amount to a maximum of just $370 per week. And for more on how each state is faring during the pandemic, check out The Biggest Coronavirus Hotspot in Every State.


downtown wilmington delaware

Though Delaware's maximum benefit rate comes in slightly higher at $400 per week, it also has a higher rate of unemployment than most: 13 percent of residents have become unemployed as of June. Tom Dougherty, chief labor market economist at the Delaware Department of Labor, has noted that nearly 39,000 residents currently receive benefits, up from just 4,556 in March.


skyline of shreveport louisiana

With a maximum weekly unemployment check of just $247, residents of Louisiana would be struggling even if they were receiving their benefits. Unfortunately, this state approves just 16 percent of its unemployment claims, leaving many laid off workers to fend for themselves. And for more on the Pelican State, find out why Louisiana Is the Most Stressed State in America.


Nashville Tennessee TN Drone Skyline Aerial Panorama.

In the last week alone, Tennessee has seen an increase of nearly 26,000 new unemployment claims—and that number is expected to rise. With a maximum weekly benefit of just $275, one in ten workers will be struggling to make ends meet on under $1,100 per month as the supplement comes to an end.


St. Louis, Missouri, USA downtown cityscape on the Mississippi River at twilight.

Mississippi offers the lowest unemployment payout in the country, with the maximum benefit capping out at just $235 per week. As Zippia notes, middle class earners have seen disproportionate cuts to how much they receive, making it difficult to claim the full amount. And for more on how Mississippi is faring during the pandemic, check out These Three States Are the Coronavirus Hotspots No One Is Talking About.



California may have the highest maximum benefit rate on the list at $450 per week, but it also has a staggeringly high rate of unemployment at the moment: 15 percent. Though Zippia's analysis doesn't explicitly take into account the cost of living in each state, it's easy to imagine how difficult it would be to survive in one of the nation's most expensive areas while strapped for cash.


Indianapolis, Indiana, USA downtown cityscape on the White River at dusk.

As residents of Indiana lose their $600 federal supplement, they'll need to make things work with a maximum of $390 per week. Kyle Anderson, a professor of business economics at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, told the news outlet IndyStar that the Indianapolis area sees about $300 million per month from the extended benefit. The end of the supplement will likely spell trouble for individuals and businesses alike. And find out who is spreading coronavirus in your home state: This Is How Old Most of the People With COVID Are in Your State.

Lauren Gray
Lauren Gray is a New York-based writer, editor, and consultant. Read more
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