Update on Ohio unemployment benefits during COVID-19 crisis

According to Lieutenant Governor John Husted, Ohio is working to process a massive increase in applications for Ohio unemployment benefits.  More people have applied for Ohio unemployment benefits over the last month than had applied for such benefits in the last two years.

Expanded unemployment benefits

Additionally, the CARES Act expanded unemployment benefits to cover self-employed and independent contractors and promised an additional $600 per week on top of what the state pays.  This has all resulted in slow processing times and numerous questions.

Answers to FAQs

The State is working to answer those questions and decrease processing times. Here are some updates:

  • Claim number: If you are filing a claim due to COVID 19, use the mass layoff number 2000108 on applications.
  • Self-employed and independent contractors: The State will start taking your information but anticipates it will not be able to process or pay benefits until May 15 of this year.  Once processed and approved, however, benefits will be retroactive.
  • Additional $600 per week: These additional payments should be starting now.
  • Efforts to alleviate slow processing time: Ohio Department of Job and Family services is adding 337 new employees, text-to-speech capabilities, and adding a virtual call center.
  • Funding challenges: According to Husted, without federal assistance Ohio’s unemployment system is on track to run out of funds in June, but, he says, that doesn’t mean Ohioans will lose their benefits.  State legislators are working to resolve this issue.
  • Where to apply:


If you have questions on this or other relief available for small businesses, self-employed, and independent contractors during the COVID 19 crisis, please contact Rebecca L. Simpson at 513.797.2856.

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