What Benefits Can You Get In California? Social security, unemployment, others …

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Residents of the state of California, even some non-US citizens, have access to a number of programs to ensure their well-being. Due to the covid-19 pandemic, new programs have been put in place to provide additional protection to Californians in need.

Unemployment benefits

Although Californian workers can normal claim up to 26 weeks unemployment financial assistance, these benefits are not the most miserly or the best in the country and do not get them very far because of the cost of living. Those who are forced into unemployment through no fault of their own, including due to covid-19 may request weekly payments of between $ 40 and $ 450 while they are looking for a new job.

Enhanced federal unemployment benefits put in place at the start of the pandemic and were last extended as part of the US bailout are no longer available. These benefits expired at the beginning of September.

California State Disability Insurance (SDI) and Paid Family Leave (PFL)

California is one of five states that provide short-term disability insurance to its residents and currently grant paid family leave to eligible workers. Both programs cover about 60-70% of salaries, ranging from $ 50 to a maximum of $ 1,357 in 2021.

Workers can claim up to 52 weeks for disability caused by non-occupational illness or injury, including having to quarantine due to covid-19, or for pregnancy. Those who need free time to caring for a seriously ill family member can request up to eight weeks of paid family leave.

Supplementary Security Income (SSI)

This federal program offers monthly payments to people who have limited income and few resources. Additional security income is available for people 65 years of age or older, as well as people of any age who are blind or disabled. You may be eligible for additional security income even if you are not a U.S. citizen but legally reside in the United States.

CalFresh Food Program

In California, the Federal Supplemental Nutritional Assistance (SNAP) program is known as the CalFresh program. Low-income individuals who meet federal income eligibility rules can sign up to receive monthly e-benefits that can be used to purchase a wide range of foods in many markets and grocery stores.

Recipients of Supplementary Security Income and State Supplementary Payment Benefits may be eligible for the CalFresh Food program to put healthy, nutritious food on the table.

Temporary Assistance Program for Needy Families (TANF)

The Temporary Assistance Program for Needy Families (TANF) offers temporary financial assistance to families who have little or no money and need housing, food, utilities, clothing or medical care. Families must qualify to receive money each month through CalWORKs to help cover expenses.

Rent and utility assistance for tenants and landlords

California will provide financial assistance to cover 100 percent of due and future rents as well as utility bills to owners and tenants. Immigrant status does not matter to participate in this program and applicants will not be asked to show proof of citizenship to apply. Applying for rent relief can protect individuals and families from eviction and erase all rent debts.


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