Labor Department Announces Raised Unemployment Benefits & More for 2023
On January 1, the maximum benefit amount for unemployment, disability, family leave, and workers’ comp will rise an additional $30+.
The New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJDOL) today announced changes in the maximum benefit rates and taxable wage base that take effect January 1, 2023, for Unemployment Insurance, Temporary Disability Insurance, Family Leave Insurance, and Workers’ Compensation.
In the new year, the maximum weekly benefit amount for new Unemployment Insurance beneficiaries increases to $830, from $804. The maximum weekly benefit for new state plan Temporary Disability and Family Leave Insurance claims increases to $1,025, from $993, while the maximum weekly benefit for new Workers’ Compensation claims rises to $1,099, from $1,065.
The maximum benefit rates and the taxable wage base are recalculated each year based on the statewide average weekly wage, in accordance with the laws governing these programs. The benefit rates and taxable wage base for 2023 reflect the $1,465.18 average weekly wage for 2021, which rose by 3.2 percent from $1,419.52 in 2020.
The amount of wages subject to wage taxes in 2023 increased to $41,100 for employers covered under the Temporary Disability Insurance program and for workers and employers covered under the Unemployment Insurance program, the Workforce Development Partnership Program, and Supplemental Workforce Fund for Basic Skills.
The taxable wage base for workers covered under the Temporary Disability and Family Leave Insurance programs increased to $156,800 for 2023.
To qualify for Unemployment, Temporary Disability, or Family Leave benefits in 2023, an applicant must earn at least $260 per week for 20 base weeks, or alternatively, earn at least $13,000. Benefit eligibility criteria are based on the state minimum wage in effect on October 1, 2022, when the minimum wage in New Jersey was $13/hour for most employees. Effective January 1, 2023, the minimum wage will rise by $1.13 to $14.13.
The contribution rate for state and local governments that choose to make contributions rather than reimburse the trust fund for Unemployment Insurance benefits paid to their former employees, remains at 0.6 percent of taxable wages for the calendar year 2023.
In October, NJDOL announced a reduction in worker contribution rates for 2023, with Temporary Disability dropping to zero percent, from .14 percent, and Family Leave decreasing by more than half, to .06 percent, from .14 percent. In practical terms, workers will save an average of $56.25 in Temporary Disability contributions and $55.25 in Family Leave contributions in 2023.
Below is a chart showing the 2022 rates and the changes taking place on January 1, 2023.