Starting this week, unemployed workers must complete the Virginia Employment Commission work search requirement


RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – Effective this week, the Virginia Employment Commission is reinstating the weekly work search requirement.

The reinstatement means people collecting unemployment have to show that they are applying for at least two jobs a week or seeking a new career path through training or education.

Gov. Ralph Northam’s Chief Workforce Advisor Megan Healy clarified that, for the first week that the requirement in reinstated, Virginians have to submit their job applications between May 30 and June 5, though they can certify those submissions when they file for benefits the following week (June 6-June 12).

Related coverage: VEC will again require people on unemployment to apply for two jobs a week

Individuals will also be required to provide details of their job search activity to the VEC for review each week. Folks who do not do the required job search could risk eligibility for benefits.

The agency said the actively job search requirement is part of state and federal law, but was temporarily suspended last year as claims soared at the start of the pandemic.

Since the pandemic began, the agency has received more than 1.5 million claims, which is more than a 1,000 percent increase from the year before.

Related coverage: Virginia Employment Commission ordered to clear massive unemployment backlog

The requirement also applies to those who received Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.

You can find more information on the VEC’s website.

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