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Frequently Asked Questions About the Excluded Workers Fund in NYS

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What is the Excluded Workers Fund?

  • New York State has committed $ 2.1 billion of its annual budget to help state residents who lost income or their jobs during the coronavirus pandemic and are not eligible for the state unemployment fund or federal emergency subsidies due to their immigration status or other factors.

Who Qualifies for the Excluded Workers Fund?

  • To qualify for the Fund, the applicant must: (1) have lived in New York State prior to March 27, 2020, and have continued to live in New York until the present; (2) not be eligible for NY unemployment insurance or federal assistance due to immigration status or other factors; (3) have earned no more than $ 26,208 in the 12 months prior to the beginning of the fund; and (4) have lost at least 50% of their household income or work-related income since the week beginning February 23, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic; or be a household where the breadwinner who contributed at least 50% of the household income died or became disabled.

What are the necessary requirements for the Excluded Workers Fund?

  • The applicant must prove through different documents:  (1) their identity, (2) that they have lived in New York from March 27, 2020, to the present, (3) their employment history.

Must my documents be in English?

  • Yes, all documents that are not in English must be accompanied by a certified copy in English.

Does my household qualify for the Excluded Workers Fund if the family's main breadwinner has died or is disabled?

  • Yes, as long as the breadwinner who died or was disabled was  over 18 years of age and contributed at least 50% of the household income.

Will I have to pay taxes on the money I receive from the Excluded Workers Fund?

  • Yes. The  tax deduction will depend on whether you received the amount of $ 15,600 or $ 3,200.

Until when can I apply for the Excluded Workers Fund?

  • The Excluded Workers Fund will be open until the available money is exhausted.

Do I have to pay to fill out the Excluded Workers Fund application?

  • No, the application is completely free.

How will applicants' information be kept secure and confidential?

  • The application will NOT include the applicant's identity documents or anything about the applicant's citizenship or immigration status or ineligibility for a Social Security Number (SSN). Applicant documents will only be used to determine eligibility and should not be shared with anyone who is not involved in the application process, unless it is to comply with a court order. There are criminal penalties for disclosing applicant information to immigration authorities.

Will there be questions about my citizenship or immigration status?

  • No. New York State has communicated that the application will not have questions related to the immigration status or citizenship of the individual applying to the fund.

What if I used my social security number to file my taxes but my work permit is now expired?

  • The criteria for determining eligibility is based on the applicant being unable to receive assistance through state unemployment or federal assistance based on their immigration status or other factors. The fact that you have a social security number does not preclude you from receiving money from the Excluded Workers Fund.

How will the payment be disbursed?

  • The state of New York has communicated that payments from the fund will be provided through a one-time payment on a Visa® prepaid card mailed to the address provided in their application.

Will there be penalties for submitting fraudulent applications?

  • Knowingly making a false statement or submitting false documents can have serious consequences. Someone who is convicted of this type of fraud can be convicted of a felony in addition to having to return all the money received.

Can an applicant who is denied benefits appeal the decision?

  • Yes. Applicants have 72 hours to select the “Appeal” button to initiate an appeal before the determination is final. You will receive a notification asking you to provide additional information or documents within 7 calendar days from the date of the notification.

Will there be a paper application?

  • No. New York State has communicated that the application process will be online only.

Do I need my own email to apply for the Excluded Workers Fund?

  • Yes. A personal email will be required for the request. The state will communicate with the applicant by this means only, whereby they may request more information.

How long does it take for the state to process the request?

  • The state of NY has not yet disclosed how long it will take to deliver the funds to qualifying applicants.