DES MOINES – Maximum weekly benefits paid to jobless Iowans and to workers injured on the job will increase July 1 announced Iowa Workforce Development.
The rise in benefits was triggered by an increase in wages covered by unemployment insurance. The average annual wage for insured Iowa workers increased to $40,106.68 in 2012, up from $38,949.32 the previous year.
The new benefit payment schedules will apply to people who file new unemployment insurance claims after July 1, 2013 and to workers who are injured on or after July 1.
Under Iowa law, the number of people covered by unemployment insurance and their gross wages are primary elements of a formula Iowa Workforce Development uses each year to compute maximum and minimum benefit amounts paid to jobless workers.
Iowa Workforce Development officials noted that about half of those eligible for unemployment insurance benefits have enough earnings to qualify for the maximum benefit.
Out of an estimated total labor force of 1,638,800, approximately 89 percent of workers were covered by the Iowa unemployment insurance program in 2012.
Beginning July 1, the workers’ compensation maximum weekly benefit for temporary total disability, healing period, permanent total disability and death will rise to $1,543. For permanent partial disability, the weekly maximum will be $1,419.