Disaster Related Services
The California Employment Development Department (EDD) provides a variety of services to individuals and businesses impacted by disasters in California. These range from assistance for those who may have lost a job due to the disaster, to employers who are forced to shut down operations. EDD staff located throughout the state are often called upon to lend a hand at Local Assistance Centers (LACs) established by the California Office of Emergency Services (OES). They provide assistance with filing claims for UI benefits, as well as job search assistance and other more general support and referrals to resources.
- For information about any LACs established in a disaster area and their hours of operation, visit CalOES.
- For California’s online job exchange system, visit CalJOBS.
For the latest news and announcements, including news releases, visit the EDD News page.
Federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance for Wildfire and Mudslide Victims
Workers, and particularly self-employed individuals, who lost their jobs or had their work hours reduced as a result of the recent wildfires and mudslide disasters in Northern and Southern California can now apply for unemployment benefits under the Federal Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) program. Please see news releases for further details:
- Disaster Unemployment Assistance benefits now available for victims of Southern California wildfires and mudslides
- Workers affected by October 2017 wildfires
Eligibility generally applies to those individuals who become unemployed as a direct result of the disaster and meet at least one of these conditions:
- Have applied for and received all regular unemployment benefits from California or any other state, or who do not qualify for regular unemployment benefits.
- Worked or were self-employed, or were scheduled to begin work or self-employment in the disaster area. Self-employed individuals in particular most often benefit from having DUA available.
- Can no longer work or perform services because of physical damage or destruction to the place of employment due to the disaster, or cannot reach work because of the disaster.
- Have not worked long enough, or earned enough in wages to qualify for regular state unemployment benefits.
- Cannot perform work or self-employment because of an injury caused by the disaster, and who don’t qualify for State Disability Insurance.
- Became the head of their households because of a death caused by the disaster.
Additional information regarding Disaster Unemployment Assistance:
- Benefit amounts are based on your previous work or self-employment and range from $40 - $450 a week for up to six months.
- Apply for benefits online through eApply4UI for faster and more convenient service. Or you can call one of these UI Phone numbers, or speak with a representative at Local Assistance Centers set up in the fire areas.
- For more information, review the EDD Fact Sheet on Disaster Unemployment Assistance:
- For further information about disaster services, visit FEMA’s Disaster Assistance website.
Other Assistance Available for Disaster Victims
The Governor has issued a State of Emergency proclamation for several disasters which waives the usual one-week waiting period for regular state Unemployment Insurance benefits, and provides employers a 60-day extension to file state payroll reports and deposit state payroll taxes without penalty or interest.
Disability Insurance (DI) Benefits
DI provides partial wage replacement benefits to eligible California workers who are unable to work due to a non-work-related illness, injury, or pregnancy. If you were injured by the disaster, you may be eligible for DI benefits.
To apply for DI benefits, submit a Claim for Disability Insurance (DI) Benefits (DE 2501) using SDI Online or by mail. If you need a paper version of the DE 2501, you can order the form through the Online Forms and Publications page or contact DI by phone.
Paid Family Leave (PFL) Benefits
PFL provides benefits to individuals who lose wages when they need to take time off work to care for a seriously ill child, parent, parent-in-law, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, spouse, or registered domestic partner. If you need to care for a family member injured in the disaster, you may be eligible for PFL benefits.
To apply for PFL benefits, submit a Claim for Paid Family Leave (PFL) Benefits (DE 2501F) using SDI Online or by mail. If you need a paper version of the DE 2501F, you can order the form through the Online Forms and Publications page or contact PFL by phone.
Employers directly affected by a disaster may request up to a 60-day extension of time from the EDD to file their state payroll reports and/or deposit state payroll taxes without penalty or interest.