DEED – Unemployment Insurance Information for Employers

On March 16, Governor Walz issued an executive order ensuring workers affected by COVID-19 have full access to unemployment benefits. The order also relieves taxpaying employers of benefit charges associated with COVID-19. This means a company’s unemployment tax rate will not increase if your workers collect unemployment benefits due to COVID-19.  If your workers apply for unemployment benefits, DEED will let you know.  Unemployment Insurance for employers:

DEED – Shared Work – Alternative to Layoffs

Employers experiencing a slowdown in their businesses or services as a result of the coronavirus impact on the economy may apply for the Unemployment Insurance Shared Work Program. This program allows employers to seek an alternative to layoffs – retaining their trained employees by reducing their hours and wages that can be partially offset with UI benefits. Workers of employers who are approved to participate in the Shared Work Program receive the percentage of their weekly UI benefit amount based on the percentage of hours and wages reduced, not to exceed 60 percent. Visit Shared Work Program to learn more:

DEED – Rapid Response

Employers planning a closure or major layoffs as a result of the coronavirus can get help through the Rapid Response program. Visit DEED’s Rapid Response page or call 1-866-213-1422

Career Solutions Dislocated Worker Program – For permanent layoffs

Our Dislocated Worker program offers free services to help individuals find suitable employment and help take the stress and uncertainty out of the process. Workers may be eligible for this program if they are out of work through no fault of their own, are eligible for unemployment insurance, and are unlikely to return to your previous occupation or industry.

SBA – Small Business Loans

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of Coronavirus (COVID-19). This program is for small businesses and most non-profit organizations that have suffered directly by this disaster. Loans can be for up to $2 million and may be used to pay fixed debts, payroll, accounts payable, and other bills that could have been paid had the disaster not occurred. Loans under $25,000 can be made without collateral, loans over $25,000 should be collateralized. However, the SBA will not decline a loan for lack of collateral.

Entrepreneur Fund

Businesses with a current EF loan can sign up for a free consulting session as a starting point.  Additionally, the Entrepreneur Fund has developed the Small Business Relief Fund to support businesses in our region hard hit by the Coronavirus pandemic. Funding will allow EF to provide financial grant assistance to business owners who are facing significant challenges but do not qualify for local, state or federal relief.

U.S. Department of Labor

Workplace safety; wages, hours and leave; and more:

Fair Labor Standards Act Questions and Answers:

Family and Medical Leave Act Questions and Answers:


Other Resources:

Minnesota Department of Revenue – tax-related information:

  • The State Revenue Department is deferring the collection of Sales Tax payments due on March 20, 2020, with no late fees or penalties.

Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Toolkit – available to both members and non-members:

Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry – Info relative to the trades, license exams and workers compensation.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention – planning guides for businesses:

Information about health insurance options for laid-off workers:

  • Anytime a Minnesotan loses health coverage, including employer-sponsored coverage, they are eligible to enroll in coverage through MNsure via a special enrollment period for the 60 days following the loss of coverage. (Details here.) Additionally, if someone is eligible for Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare, enrollment is available at all times, regardless of when they might have last had coverage. (Details here.)

OSHA – Guidance on Preparing Workplace for COVID-19:

EEOC- Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the Americans with Disabilities Act:

Central hub where individuals and families can access information on finding food, paying housing bills, or other essential services:  Dial 2-1-1, 651-291-0211 or 1-800-543-7709 or Text ‘MNCOVID’ to 898211