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Unemployment Benefits Extended by the House

By Neetal Parekh | Last updated on
If you have lost your job and are seeing an end to unemployment benefits in your near future, you may be in for some good news.  The U.S. of Representatives this week approved a 13-week extension of unemployment benefits.  The catch is that the extension applies specifically to states with 8.5% or higher unemployment rate, making it applicable to 27 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. 

The House Bill passed easily, tallying 331 votes in favor to 83 votes against.  It now must make its way through Senate, where it is expected to pass expeditiously, before it is enacted into law.  If approved, the unemployment benefits extension would be the 4th of its kind passed by Congress since December 2007.

Though the economy is thought to be on a gradual mend, statistics from August 2009 told the story of a still-wounded economy with a 9.7% percent national unemployment rate.  It may take months for the country to completely step out of the recession, and perhaps longer for the creation of new jobs to absorb the unemployment overflow; however, the passage of the unemployment benefits extension at hand may come just in time for an estimated 400,000 unemployed Americans who could exhaust benefits by September 2009.


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