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North Dakota will be changing how it handles unemployment claims, the state’s governor announced in a press release July 8.

Gov. Doug Burgum signed an executive order July 8 that will restore the work registration and search requirements for individuals seeking unemployment benefits, and would become effective on July 26. The requirements had been suspended March 13 to expand unemployment eligibility as businesses were closed during the COVID-19 crisis.

Under the guidelines, all people seeking unemployment – including those related to COVID-19 – will be required to register for work and conduct an active work search.

“The suspension of registration and work search requirements was always meant to be temporary. Reintroduction of these requirements will assist employees and employers to return to work and continue a North Dakota Smart Restart. Job Service North Dakota will continue working with individuals receiving benefits on a case-by-case basis to make sure they receive the assistance they need and that we are protecting the lives and livelihoods of all,” the governor announced in a press release.

“Since the beginning of the COVID-19 crisis, Job Service North Dakota has received an unprecedented number of unemployment insurance claims. In total, North Dakota workers have filed 97,178 regular unemployment claims. An additional 19,689 North Dakota workers have filed for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) and 20,218 have filed for Pandemic Unemployment Emergency Compensation (PUEC). Nearly $568 million in benefit payments have been made since March 15.”

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