FAQ - How Uber and Lyft drivers can apply for unemployment benefits - Drivers Union

FAQ - How Uber and Lyft drivers can apply for unemployment benefits


The Drivers Union has been advocating in Olympia and Washington D.C. to make sure Uber and Lyft drivers are eligible for unemployment benefits.

Our work is starting to pay off! We've talked to dozens of drivers who have started receiving benefits through Washington State's Employment Security Department.

This is the latest on what you need to know to apply. Be sure to access more detailed instructions on our emergency Unemployment Guide available here.

1. I already applied, do I need to apply again?

No. Log on to your account, and look for Covid-19 PUA Claim in your alerts. Have your 1099s ready to upload. For the full unemployment guide, go here.

2. The website is crashing or it's timing out. What do I do?

Website and phone lines are experiencing tens of thousands of hits, and that is causing problems. Try at off-hours, and always save your application before moving on to the next screen so you don’t lose your work. 

3. What do I need before I apply?

You will need your 1099 from 2019. You will also need to estimate your net earnings for each quarter in 2019.

4. Who should I list as my employer?

Uber Technologies: 1455 Market St #400, San Francisco, CA 94103  
Lyft: 185 Berry St #5000, San Francisco, CA 94107

5. What do I list as my primary occupation?

Taxi Drivers and Chauffeurs. (Code 53-3041.00)

6. Do I need to file my 2019 taxes before I apply?

No. You can provide your 1099s or other documentation of your earnings that you would rely upon to calculate your income.

7. What date should I start my claim?

You should start your claim on the first day you began losing work due to Covid-19. You may be eligible for back pay back to the first date of your eligibility.

8. How much will I receive?

If you normally work full-time, you should receive $235 per week plus $600 per week benefit enhancement. Once your earnings are reviewed, you may receive up to $1,390 per week including back pay starting from your date of eligibility.

9. I made a mistake on my application. What do I do?

Call ESD on their toll-free number 1-800-318-6022. You should expect long wait times.

10. Should I request "Standby"?

No. The job search requirement is waived, so you should not request “Standby”.

11. I finished my application and was approved. Do I need to do anything else?

File a claim every week to keep getting paid.

Showing 1 reaction

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  • Daoleuang Phongsa
    commented 2023-03-22 22:44:58 -0700
    Was there any minimum wage or hour requirement to receive PUA? I made $34K gross income through ride-share in 2018, but only made $1000 in 2019 through ride-share.

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