Florida Senate - 2021                                    SB 1996
       By Senator Pizzo
       38-01922-21                                           20211996__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to unemployment compensation; amending
    3         s. 443.111, F.S.; increasing the weekly benefit
    4         amounts an individual may receive; conforming
    5         provisions to changes made by the act; reenacting ss.
    6         443.041(2)(b) and 443.1116(6), (7), and (8)(a), F.S.,
    7         relating to fees and short-term compensation,
    8         respectively, to incorporate the amendments made to s.
    9         443.111, F.S., in references thereto; providing an
   10         effective date.
   12  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   14         Section 1. Subsection (3) and paragraph (b) of subsection
   15  (5) of section 443.111, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   16         443.111 Payment of benefits.—
   17         (3) WEEKLY BENEFIT AMOUNT.—An individual’s “weekly benefit
   18  amount” is an amount equal to one twenty-sixth of the total
   19  wages for insured work paid during that quarter of the base
   20  period in which the total wages paid were the highest, but not
   21  less than $32 or more than the product of the Florida minimum
   22  wage as defined in s. 448.109(1) multiplied by 40 $275. The
   23  weekly benefit amount, if not a multiple of $1, is rounded
   24  downward to the nearest full dollar amount. The maximum weekly
   25  benefit amount in effect at the time the claimant establishes an
   26  individual weekly benefit amount is the maximum benefit amount
   27  applicable throughout the claimant’s benefit year.
   28         (5) DURATION OF BENEFITS.—
   29         (b) Each otherwise eligible individual is entitled during
   30  any benefit year to a total amount of benefits equal to 25
   31  percent of the total wages in his or her base period, not to
   32  exceed $6,325 or the product arrived at by multiplying the
   33  weekly benefit amount with the number of weeks determined in
   34  paragraph (c), whichever is less. However, the total amount of
   35  benefits, if not a multiple of $1, is rounded downward to the
   36  nearest full dollar amount. These benefits are payable at a
   37  weekly rate no greater than the weekly benefit amount.
   38         Section 2. For the purpose of incorporating the amendment
   39  made by this act to section 443.111, Florida Statutes, in a
   40  reference thereto, paragraph (b) of subsection (2) of section
   41  443.041, Florida Statutes, is reenacted to read:
   42         443.041 Waiver of rights; fees; privileged communications.—
   43         (2) FEES.—
   44         (b) An attorney at law representing a claimant for benefits
   45  in any district court of appeal of this state or in the Supreme
   46  Court of Florida is entitled to counsel fees payable by the
   47  department as set by the court if the petition for review or
   48  appeal is initiated by the claimant and results in a decision
   49  awarding more benefits than provided in the decision from which
   50  appeal was taken. The amount of the fee may not exceed 50
   51  percent of the total amount of regular benefits permitted under
   52  s. 443.111(5)(b) during the benefit year.
   53         Section 3. For the purpose of incorporating the amendment
   54  made by this act to section 443.111, Florida Statutes, in a
   55  reference thereto, subsections (6) and (7) and paragraph (a) of
   56  subsection (8) of section 443.1116, Florida Statutes, are
   57  reenacted to read:
   58         443.1116 Short-time compensation.—
   60  weekly short-time compensation benefit amount payable to an
   61  individual is equal to the product of her or his weekly benefit
   62  amount as provided in s. 443.111(3) and the ratio of the number
   63  of normal weekly hours of work for which the employer would not
   64  compensate the individual to the individual’s normal weekly
   65  hours of work. The benefit amount, if not a multiple of $1, is
   66  rounded downward to the next lower multiple of $1.
   68  individual may not be paid benefits under this section in any
   69  benefit year for more than the maximum entitlement provided in
   70  s. 443.111(5), and an individual may not be paid short-time
   71  compensation benefits for more than 26 weeks in any benefit
   72  year.
   75         (a) The short-time compensation benefits paid to an
   76  individual shall be deducted from the total benefit amount
   77  established for that individual in s. 443.111(5).
   78         Section 4. This act shall take effect July 1, 2021.