North Carolina COVID-19 unemployment payments starting to go out

Gov. Roy Cooper at a meeting concerning COVID-19

RALEIGH — North Carolina’s governor says that the first coronavirus-related unemployment payments will be paid starting next week as the state is flooded with tens of thousands of claims.

Gov. Roy Cooper issued a statement Sunday saying that the state has received approximately 270,000 claims in the past two weeks, most of them related to COVID-19 as businesses close or scale back. The state reported bout 22,000 claims on Saturday alone. By comparison, the state received about 7,500 claims in the first two weeks of March.

“Thousands of workers have lost jobs, but their bills don’t stop. My administration is working overtime to get unemployment checks out now. We’ll keep pushing every day for more state and federal help to save our workers and their families,” said Gov. Cooper.

North Carolina health officials reported that there were around 1,000 positive cases statewide as of Sunday morning, including four deaths and about 90 hospitalizations.

For general questions about unemployment benefits in North Carolina during the COVID-19 crisis, residents are encouraged to contact the Division of Employment Security