California is working to support people financially affected by the COVID-19 outbreak and keep them safe.

On this page:

Learn what benefits you qualify for and how to apply for them. See this chart of benefits available for workers.

Unemployment insurance

If you lost your job or had your hours reduced, and meet eligibility requirements, you may be eligible to receive Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits from California’s Employment Development Department (EDD).

Guide to applying for unemployment benefits

The state has removed waiting periods for unemployment and disability insurance for Californians who lose work as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Check EDD’s programs and benefits for workers affected by COVID-19 for the latest news.

Help for self-employed and independent contractors

On April 28, the state rolled out a new program to help unemployed or partially unemployed Californians who are business owners, self-employed, independent contractors, and others who are financially impacted by the pandemic. This is a federally funded program called the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program.

PUA benefits are available if you do not qualify for regular UI benefits in California or another state, and also do not qualify for State Disability Insurance or Paid Family Leave benefits. The PUA program includes up to 57 weeks of benefits.

More benefits for workers receiving UI or PUA

Beginning December 27, California workers who receive UI or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) benefits will get $300 per week added automatically to their benefits.

Workers who received benefits between July 26 and September 5, 2020 will get $300 per week added automatically to their benefits.

Workers who received benefits between March 29 and July 25, 2020 will get $600 per week added automatically to their benefits.

If you’ve used all of your available UI benefits, an additional 24 weeks of benefits may be available through the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC)

If you’ve used all your PEUC benefits, an additional 20 weeks of benefits may be available through the Federal-State Extended Duration (FED-ED) benefits program.

Visit EDD’s CARES Act site for the latest updates on California’s implementation of these programs.

Check EDD’s answers to frequently asked questions about COVID-19 and unemployment.

Keeping workplaces safe

Workers with COVID-19 infection

If you are employed and have COVID-19, you should stay home. There are options available if you can’t work because you or someone you are caring for is sick or quarantined. 

Worker rights and safety

Support for working parents

  • Check support for working families (PDF) for information to help you locate child care, find assistance to pay for child care, and connect you to additional supports for your family.
  • Visit the Childcare page to learn more about childcare options near you.

Temporary housing for essential workers

Hotel rooms for healthcare workers 

The Non-Congregate Sheltering (NCS) for California Healthcare Workers Program was created to keep healthcare workers safe and reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus. It provides hotel rooms to healthcare workers who give critical care to COVID-19 patients so they don’t bring home the virus to their household. To find out program eligibility and how to reserve a room, visit Hotel rooms for California healthcare workers.

Hotel rooms for agricultural workers

The Housing for the Harvest program offers temporary housing to farm and food processing workers who need to isolate due to COVID-19. It helps exposed agricultural workers protect their loved ones by giving them a space to self-isolate.  

Visit Housing for agricultural workers to find out more information.

Questions and answers

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