DENVER (KDVR) — Although businesses are reopening, many workers are still trying to recover from devastating job losses. New numbers show a decline of more than 220,000 private sector jobs in Colorado. The largest losses affect leisure and hospitality, trade, transportation and utility companies.
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment says it has paid out more than 80 percent of the 550,000 claims received since the middle of March, but a backlog is still making it difficult for some.
Former northern Colorado auto shop manager Darren Orr has been unemployed since April 3. He filed for unemployment benefits at that time but is still waiting to receive a deposit.
“I lost my job due to COVID-19, we just couldn’t afford to stay open,” he said.
Although the state department of labor tells the Problem Solvers progress is being made, the backlog caused by the coronavirus pandemic still exists.
That means it may be difficult to get through to the call center. Personal assistance may be necessary if you have a military or back-dated claim or need to file out-of-state wages.
The state tells FOX31 right now, it should take four to six weeks to receive your benefits once you have correctly filed for unemployment.
“If it’s longer than that, there’s likely something going on with your claim,” said Cher Haavind, Colorado Department of Labor and Employment spokesperson.
Haavind emphasizes that it is important to make sure you have entered the correct information and utilized the PIN issued when you made your claim, then do regular follow-ups on the unemployment benefits website.
“You don’t just file a claim. You actually, every week or every other week, have to go in either online or by phone and request that benefit payment,” she said.
The state just set up a new online chat portal to reach those still waiting for benefits