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General Laws

Section 29. (a) Any individual in total unemployment and otherwise eligible for benefits whose average weekly wage in his base period is sixty-six dollars or less shall be paid for each week of unemployment an amount based on the highest quarterly wage of his base period, as provided in the following table:

An individual in total unemployment and otherwise eligible for benefits whose average weekly wage in his base period exceeds sixty-six dollars shall be paid for each week of unemployment an amount equal to fifty percent of his average weekly wage in the base period, rounded to the next lower full dollar amount, but not more than fifty-seven and one-half per cent of the average weekly wage of all employees covered by this chapter. On or before the first day of October of each year, the total wages reported on contribution reports for the twelve months ending March the thirty-first of such year shall be divided by the average monthly number of insured employees (determined by dividing the total insured employees reported on contribution reports for the twelve months ending March the thirty-first by twelve). The average annual wage thus obtained shall be divided by fifty-two and the average weekly wage thus determined, rounded to the nearest cent. Fifty-seven and one-half per cent of this amount, rounded to the next lower full dollar amount shown shall establish the maximum weekly benefit rate paid any individual whose benefit year commences on or after the first Sunday of October of each year and prior to the first Sunday of October the following year.

(b) An individual in partial unemployment and otherwise eligible for benefits shall be paid the difference between his aggregate remuneration with respect to each week of partial unemployment and the weekly benefit rate to which he would have been entitled if totally unemployed; provided, however, that earnings up to one-third of his weekly benefit rate shall be disregarded. In no case shall the amount of earnings so disregarded plus the weekly benefit rate equal or exceed the individual’s average weekly wage. Such partial benefit amount shall be rounded to the next lower full dollar amount if it includes a fractional part of a dollar.

(c) An individual in total or partial unemployment and otherwise eligible for benefits shall be paid for each week of such unemployment, in addition to the amount payable under subsections (a), (b) or (d) as the case may be, the sum of twenty-five dollars for each unemancipated child of such individual who is in fact dependent upon and is being wholly or mainly supported by such individual, and who is under the age of eighteen, or who is eighteen years of age or over and incapable of earning wages because of mental or physical incapacity, or who is under the age of twenty-four and is a full-time student at an educational institution which normally maintains a regular faculty and curriculum and normally has a regularly organized body of students in attendance at the place where its educational activities are carried on, or who is in his custody pending the adjudication of a petition filed by such individual for the adoption of such child in a court of competent jurisdiction, and for each such child for whom he is under a decree or order from a court of competent jurisdiction to contribute to such child’s support and for whom no other person is receiving allowances hereunder; provided, that such child is domiciled within the United States or the territories or possessions thereof. In no instance shall the dependency benefits as provided in this subsection be more than fifty per cent of the individual’s weekly benefit rate except that if such amount of dependency benefits includes a fractional part of a dollar, it shall be rounded to the next lower full dollar amount. The amount of dependency benefits determined as of the beginning of an individual’s benefit year shall not be reduced for the duration of such benefit year; provided, however, that this provision shall not prevent the transfer thereof from one spouse to another in accordance with this section. If both the husband and wife receive benefits with respect to a week of unemployment, only one of them shall be entitled to a dependency allowance with respect to any child. The commissioner shall prescribe standards as to who may receive a dependency allowance when both the husband and wife are eligible to receive unemployment compensation benefits. No dependency benefits shall be paid unless the individual submits documentation satisfactory to the commissioner establishing the existence of the claimed dependent. If the above provisions are satisfied, an otherwise eligible individual who has been appointed guardian of such child by a court of competent jurisdiction shall be paid such dependency benefits.

(d) An individual in unemployment and otherwise eligible for benefits, who is receiving, has received, or will receive payments in the form of retirement benefits, any part of which was financed by a base period employer, shall be paid for each week of unemployment an amount computed as follows:

(1) Fifty per cent of such retirement benefit shall be deducted from the weekly benefit to which the individual may be entitled under subsection (a) of this section; provided, however, that the total benefits to which the individual may be entitled under sections thirty and thirty A shall be reduced by the weekly amount which, but for the operation of this subsection, would be payable under subsection (a).

(2) An individual for whom weekly benefits have been determined under this subsection, and who is in partial unemployment, shall have his weekly benefit payment reduced in accordance with the provisions of subsection (b) of this section.

(3) The amount of any dependency benefits payable under subsection (c) of this section shall be computed on the weekly benefit amount which, but for the operation of this subsection, would be payable under subsection (a) of this section.

(4) As used in this subsection, the term “retirement benefit” means a benefit or pension of any type, not including severance pay or Social Security benefits, which is provided under a union contract or other retirement plan. For the purpose of determining the amount to be deducted under paragraph (1), the individual’s gross monthly retirement benefits shall be divided by 4.3, disregarding any fractional part of a dollar. In any case where the retirement benefits are paid other than on a monthly basis, the commissioner may use any method of computation which is reasonable to obtain an average weekly retirement benefit amount. The weekly retirement benefit amount as determined by this paragraph shall not be increased for the duration of the benefit year notwithstanding any increase in the amount of retirement benefits.

(5) An unemployed individual who during the base period, performed services as a teacher as defined in section one of chapter thirty-two and who is receiving, has received, or will receive payments in the form of retirement benefits under the provisions of said chapter thirty-two, shall have his weekly benefit rate reduced in accordance with the provisions of this subsection notwithstanding the fact that such payments are not financed in any part by a base period employer.

(6) Notwithstanding any of the foregoing provisions of this subsection, the amount of benefits otherwise payable to an individual for any week which begins in a period with respect to which such individual is receiving governmental or other pension, retirement or retired pay, annuity or any other similar periodic payment which is based on the previous work of such individual, shall be reduced by an amount equal to the amount of such pension, retirement or retired pay, annuity or other payment, which is reasonably attributable to such week; provided, however, that such reduction shall apply only if then required by section 3304(a)(15) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954; and provided, further, that any amendment of section 3304(a)(15) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 shall become part of this subsection on the effective date of such amendment; and provided, further, that if then allowed by section 3304(a)(15) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, such reduction shall apply only if a base period employer contributed to or maintained such pension, retirement or retired pay, annuity, or other payment plan, and in the case of a payment not made under the Railroad Retirement Act of 1974, or the corresponding provisions of prior law, services of the individual for such employer during the base period affected eligibility for or increased the amount of such pension, retirement or retired pay, annuity, or other similar plan; and provided further, that if the individual contributed to such plan, the amount of benefits otherwise payable to such individual shall be reduced by fifty per cent of the amount of such pension, retirement or retired pay, annuity, or other payment, notwithstanding the amount contributed by the individual to such plan. Payments received under the Social Security Act shall not be subject to this paragraph.

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