In a press conference, this morning led by Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly, KS Secretary of Labor Delia Garcia asked people seeking to file for unemployment to as much as possible file online at getkansasbenefits.gov.
Garcia says the Department of Labor lines have been overwhelmed with people filing for unemployment due to layoffs from the coronavirus pandemic. In one week, Garcia says her department has received close to 10,000 requests for unemployment, up from around 1,800 requests the week before.
Because of the volume of calls, people who call in can expect a long online wait time. She’s asking those who have online access to go online and file and to reserve the phone lines for those who do not have access to computers or the internet.
In addition, she encourages employers to file by spreadsheets for all of the employees, which would eliminate the need for individual employees to file.
Her team is working to expedite all applications and has a goal of turning around requests within 7 to 10 days, with benefits being received either through direct deposit or on a debit card.
The maximum unemployment benefit is $488 per week and the minimum is $122 per week, with the benefit amount based on an individual’s pre-unemployment earnings. At this time she says the average claim is $330 per week but she expects that will change overtime.
With relaxed qualifying requirements, she also encourages individuals who have had their hours reduced to apply for unemployment under the shared benefits program.
For individuals who do not have online access, the number to call is 1-800-292-6333.