MI unemployment adding call center staff, hours

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LANSING, Mich. (WOOD) — The Michigan Unemployment Agency is adding staff and hours to help serve a surge in customers filing unemployment claims.

The agency’s call center hours will be extended by an hour every day 8 a.m.to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday. The call center remains open on 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday.

Officials say people in the call center and online chat queues before closing time will have their calls or chats resolved that day.

The state estimates it will have about 500 people answering calls by the end of this week. At normal staffing levels, there are about 130 employees, the agency said.

While the state is increasing staff, officials say the best way to file a claim is online.

The state is still asking people to file on a schedule based on their last names.

For online applications, last names starting with the letters A-L asked to file on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. People with last names beginning with M-Z should file on Sundays, Tuesdays or Thursdays. Anyone can apply online on Saturdays.

For those applying over the phone, people with last names starting with A-L should call Mondays and Wednesdays.  Folks with last names beginning with M-Z on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Anyone can call on Fridays and Saturdays.

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