OHIO BUREAU OF WORKERS’ COMP
Ohio BWC COVID-19 Guidance
Links to employment opportunities:
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services urges individuals to file their claims online, if possible, at unemployment.ohio.gov. Each claim is important to us, and we recognize the hardship that the COVID-19 pandemic has placed on many Ohio families. We have been working around the clock to streamline performance and boost capacity by adding servers so the online claims system can handle the unprecedented influx of claims, which has affected processing times. We also have reassigned more than 300 ODJFS employees to assist with call volume to increase our service capabilities.
It’s important to keep in mind that during previous economic downturns, claims came in waves as the
recession worsened and businesses closed gradually, over time. In this case, the claims came in all at once and created a tsunami. Such a large number of claims in a short period of time would tax any online system, especially one that is 16 years old.
Expanded Call Center Hours
Those without internet access or who need help with PIN resets can call 1-877-644-6562 (OHIO-JOB) from 7a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sundays.
Workers who lose their jobs as a result of the coronavirus can enter the mass-layoff number 2000180 on their applications. However, if affected individuals have already submitted claims without this number, they do not need to add it.
EXECUTIVE ORDERS FROM STATE OF OHIO
State of Ohio
Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation has developed a website specifically geared toward matching essential businesses with Ohioans who are able and willing to work as an essential employee during the COVID-19 crisis. Both essential businesses and current job seekers can visit Coronavirus.Ohio.Gov/JobSearch to post and search. The site features a highly-streamlined interface with only two main links – one for essential businesses, and one for job seekers. Applicants can search through jobs in their area, their region, and the entire state.
EMPLOYMENT AND FUNDING
Ohio Department of Development
April 9, 2020
- Governor DeWine and the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation (BWC) proposed giving $1.6 billion in dividends to Ohio employers this spring to ease the economic impact of COVID-19. If approved by the BWC’s board, $1.4 billion will go to private employers, and $200 million will be directed to local governments. More information is below as well as a statement of support from the National Federation of Independent Businesses-Ohio Chapter.
- Ohioans can apply for unemployment benefits online 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at unemployment.ohio.gov. It is also possible to file by phone at 877-644-6562 or TTY at 888- 642-8203, Monday through Friday 7 am to 7 pm and 9 am to 1 pm on Saturdays. Employers with questions should email UCTech@jfs.ohio.gov.
As always, Coronavirus.Ohio.Gov and the Department of Health hotline, 1-833-4-ASK-ODH are great resources for those who have questions.
Ohio Development Services Agency
April 8, 2020
A new office has been developed within the Ohio Development Services Agency to better coordinate Ohio’s efforts to identify and provide support for Ohio’s nearly 950,000 small businesses.
The Office of Small Business Relief will:
- Serve as the state’s designated agency for administrating federal recovery funds awarded to Ohio for small business support and recovery;
- Work with federal, state, and local partners to evaluate and determine possible regulatory reforms that encourage employment and job creation; and
- Coordinate efforts of Ohio’s Small Business Development Centers and Minority Business Assistance Centers.
More information on all resources currently available to small businesses is available at coronavirus.ohio.gov/BusinessHelp.
April 6, 2020
- Demand is very high for the new SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans. Some banks in our region started accepting applications from businesses and forwarding the applications to the SBA on April 3. This program, part of the federal CARES Act, can provide partial loan forgiveness to small businesses for retaining employees. Because of high demand, some banks are only working with existing customers at this time. We encourage you to work with your existing lender first. See PPP details and resources here
- Despite record unemployment filings, some businesses are in critical need of hiring new workers. Lt. Governor Jon Husted announced that the Governor’s Office of Workforce Transformation developed a website specifically geared toward matching essential businesses with Ohioans who are able and willing to work as an essential employee during the COVID-19 crisis. Both essential businesses and current job seekers can visit Coronavirus.Ohio.gov/JobSearch to post and search.
- JobsOhio is doing a variety of things to ease cash crunches with their current clients, including deferring loan repayments, offering job retention loans, expediting disbursements, and extending metric evaluation dates. Additional financial help for non-JobsOhio customers is coming. Learn more here.
- Please visit COVID-19 Resource page frequently as it is updated when new programs and information is available.