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kewlj
kewlj 
Joined: Apr 17, 2012
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June 1st, 2020 at 12:28:16 PM permalink
So let's talk unemployment for professional gamblers, which falls under the new expanded unemployment eligibility for "gig" and self employed under the CARES act. I am not sure if there has been a discussion on this, although I heard Wizard voice his opinion (maybe on his Q & A livestream) that self employed people should not be eligible for unemployment.

In general, I agree with Mike. When someone choose to be self employed in any form, unemployment, vacations, sick days, saving for retirement are all part of the deal. The self employed takes on that responsibility. But this pandemic shutdown is a very unusual situation. By order of the government, casinos (and other business) were shut down. So anyone that makes their living, self employed style is shutdown....ordered shutdown. Taxi and uber drivers, People that may drive vans for casinos, various other positions, including casino hosts depending on the casino and how the job is structured may be contracted or self employed type arrangement. Lawmakers recognized that all these type of people in all kind of industries are out of work, due to no fault of there own and that is why they temporarily expanded unemployment eligibility,

As a professional gambler, I should and have qualified and have no problem accepting unemployment compensation while casino doors are locked. I know some of my fellow AP' have a differing opinion, so I welcome everyone's opinion first and later I will get into my experience going through this process. Nevada has been about the worst state in dealing with these expanded eligibility rules.
TomG
TomG
Joined: Sep 26, 2010
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June 1st, 2020 at 1:24:47 PM permalink
"Unemployment" is an insurance available for people who either paid into the program or someone else did on their behalf. I think most people here think insurance programs are generally bad bets, so I would say it's a good thing to not be a part of it. If someone asked you a year ago the probability of all casinos shutting down how would you have answered? Depending on how you would answer that for the upcoming years, it might be worth looking into an LLC or something to see if there are options for you to pay into UI if you wanted.

Payroll Protection Program is/was available to anyone who self-employed who paid themselves a salary (maybe even if you didn't). There is also Pandemic Unemployment Assistance available to people that people can receive even if they weren't paying into Unemployment Insurance.
Lovecomps
Lovecomps
Joined: Aug 12, 2018
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June 1st, 2020 at 1:28:09 PM permalink
If you got win/loss reports from the casino(s) and filed tax returns based on them then you should be able to get something.
The best things in life are not free.
kewlj
kewlj 
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June 1st, 2020 at 1:39:49 PM permalink
Pandemic unemployment assistance> Is that the extra $600 that people getting unemployment get?
Venthus
Venthus
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June 1st, 2020 at 1:44:51 PM permalink
Quote: kewlj

Pandemic unemployment assistance> Is that the extra $600 that people getting unemployment get?



PUA is basically an expansion of unemployment to allow self-employed, part-timers, independent contractors, etc. in. Basically, anybody that 'works' but doesn't pay unemployment insurance (or whatever it's referred to as in your area).

The extra 600$ was part of the same CARES Act package, but isn't the same.

(Disclaimer: My legal employment falls into the category of people covered by PUA.)
kewlj
kewlj 
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June 1st, 2020 at 1:51:11 PM permalink
Quote: Venthus

PUA is basically an expansion of unemployment to allow self-employed, part-timers, independent contractors, etc. in. Basically, anybody that 'works' but doesn't pay unemployment insurance (or whatever it's referred to as in your area).

The extra 600$ was part of the same CARES Act package, but isn't the same.

(Disclaimer: My legal employment falls into the category of people covered by PUA.)



Ok, so PUA is the official terminology of the eligibility being changed to include people like me, self employed.
kewlj
kewlj 
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June 1st, 2020 at 1:58:29 PM permalink
Ok, so again, I hope this isn't too political, but if anyone had asked me I would have said, "no", self employed shouldn't get unemployment. And I like the extra $600 even less. That means some workers are getting significantly more to not work than they were earning working. That is a bad precedent.

I stopped playing a bout a week before official shutdown and wasn't expecting to be eligible for anything. But, the Cares act and these expanded unemployment eligibility and funds are just as much about stimulus as anything else. So if the lawmakers decides that is what they are doing I have no problem taking it.

so anyway, I will share my experience shortly. I guess the other AP's don't want to talk about this, maybe don't want to admit they applied. That is fine.
Venthus
Venthus
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June 1st, 2020 at 2:04:33 PM permalink
Quote: kewlj

Ok, so PUA is the official terminology of the eligibility being changed to include people like me, self employed.



For the purposes of PUA eligibility, I think the question being debated is whether or not 'professional gambler' is classified as employment. (To which my casual, not-a-lawyer, not-personally-at-stake, not-too-much-thought opinion is: "If you put that on your tax forms and pay taxes on it, then why not.")

But even then, the system is erratic. I caught up with a few people I know who are also in the PUA-bucket over the weekend and the tally is: 2-rejected-after-appeal, 1-accepted-after-appeal, 1-accepted. One of the rejected-after-appeals should've gotten approved with no problem, and he claimed that he filed together with two of his coworkers who both got approved. The one that got accepted straight up, frankly, probably shouldn't've.
kewlj
kewlj 
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June 1st, 2020 at 2:25:52 PM permalink
Ok, so like I said, when I stopped playing I had no thought about unemployment. That is part of being self employed. But when they passed the Cares act which made self employed eligible, I applied. I applied March 31. I had my tax paperwork figuring I would need to download it. I filled out the application and was never asked for anything. I figured Ok well that will come later.

Several days later I received my unemployment debit card. No information on anything just a card. So I went back online logged into my account and it said my claim was approved. No mention of when or how much money I would get. I thought it unusual, but thought I was all set.

But I was wrong. That 'approval" really meant nothing. For the next 7 weeks I kept reading about the problems Nevada was having as they weren't set up to deal with the self employment or gig claims. I assume no state was. So they kept promising a date that the system would be able to handle these self employment claims. Each time, the system crashed and we got no where. Finally 2 weeks ago, I was able to go to my account, fill out some info, download my tax paperwork and file claims for each of the back weeks dating back to March 31 when I first applied. And each week after that I have been able to file for that additional week. Totaling 9 back weeks at weekly max amount of just over $400 and the extra $600 per week.

So Today, I got about half of the money I was expecting. At first I thought maybe the extra $600 wasn't included, but upon further look it is. I got paid for 4 weeks. I guess they are doing it in parts. I also filed for the new week today, my 10th, which will be my last if the casinos open on schedule this week. While I don't agree that self employed should qualify for unemployment under normal circumstances, I don't feel bad about accepting it, since they amended the eligibility. I mean the casinos, like every other business were closed by order of the government. Just one guys opinion and experience.
SOOPOO
SOOPOO
Joined: Aug 8, 2010
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June 1st, 2020 at 2:34:19 PM permalink
You deserve it, if anyone actually deserves it. You do it full time, with no other gainful employment. Feel bad for a guy who works 40hr/week at $15 an hour, and AP's 20 hours a week at let's say, $30 an hour. He will I'm guessing be very unlikely to claim 'unemployment', even though half his income is gone. So he will have to make due on the $600 a week. A guy who was working part time, say 20 hours a week at $15 an hour, if now unemployed, will be getting around $150 from the state and $600 from the feds for $750 a week! Makes sense, doesn't it?

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