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The US social safety net is a weird collection of laws and policies. We don’t have a national system of last resort where residents can receive payments to support themselves while they’re out of work. We used to have that, it was called welfare, and the federal government outsourced that to the individual state governments in the 1990s. Each state government can decide what sort of welfare system they want, and if you’d like to hear how that’s going just google Brett Farve Mississippi.

Each state also has a system of unemployment insurance. This system is a joint state-federal program. There are federal guidelines for how the systems should work, but each individual state government decides how the insurance should work. Generally — money for the program is either taken out of employees’ paychecks via payroll taxes or paid directly by employers. If you lose your job through no fault of your own you can get a weekly stipend that’s some fraction of your old salary. The definition of “no fault of your own” varies from state to state, and you also usually need to be actively looking for work (and reporting progress) to receive your stipend.

Another weird edge case is how unemployment insurance considers non-W2 work. If you take on a small freelancing gig or say, sell a digital product, that’s considered income and may reduce your benefit or may make you ineligible for unemployment entirely. Trying to understand HOW your benefits work under this scenario can be difficult, as the various bureaucracies are funded and designed to service the program and not to communicate to residents how they work.

With Pulse Storm sales lagging, coming at the rate of one every 2 – 4 weeks, having to deal with the added bureaucracy of reporting a tiny amount of extra income just isn’t worth the distraction. So I’ll be suspending Pulse Storm sales while I begin a new job search in earnest. (think I can help you? get in touch)

Pulse Storm will return, and help/support for existing purchases is still available via the Pulse Storm’s support form. As always, thank you to long-time customers for making my career and life a more financially manageable thing.

Copyright © Alana Storm 1975 – 2023 All Rights Reserved

Originally Posted: 10th April 2023

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