Florida unemployment: State turning to paper applications to help with processing backlog

Better Call Behnken

TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) – The past two weeks have proven that Florida’s unemployment processing system can’t handle the number of claims Floridians need to make.

Applicants report spending hours on the phone only to get disconnected and trying to file online only to be unable to submit their applications.

As a result, state officials say they are now going to use paper applications to help work through the backlog. The application was to be posted on the state unemployment website Friday.

“I do think people need a backup,” Sen. Annette Taddeo (D-Miami) said. “If you’re waiting on the phone two weeks – how about if you mailed the form two weeks ago, at least you know they received it.”

Taddeo said her office is hearing from people daily who are unable to get through and that government “is failing.”

Meanwhile, officials say they are still working to revamp the state website and hire additional staff to process claims.

Viewers tell Better Call Behnken they are frustrated and running out of money. They say they worry they’ll miss out on federal unemployment money because they have been unable to register with their state.


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