Becoming unemployed means that you’re cut off from income until you’ve figured out another way to keep yourself and your loved ones afloat.
Fortunately, an emergency fund can serve as a safety net and keep you above the water for a couple of months, depending on how much money you’ve set aside for a rainy day.
However, this money won’t last forever, and you’ll want to prepare for the worst-case scenario, which is the possibility of not being able to become part of the workforce fast enough to warrant you’ll be keeping the lights on for the coming month.
Most people give up at this point and resort to one of the many welfare programs the federal government has to offer, except for the few that are brave enough to set off into the world of entrepreneurship on their own, building a business from the ground up to generate their own income.
What is self-employment assistance?
With the help of the self-employment assistance program, often abbreviated as SEAP, Americans can try to create a job for themselves in an industry that shows promise, at least in their local economy.
Apart from creating a job opportunity for yourself, starting your own business also creates jobs for those around you, helping others in your community gain access to an income of sorts.
At the end of the day, running your own company can be pretty taxing and difficult to manage, especially if you’re just starting out, which is why the government offers financial assistance to those willing to set off into the market on their own and make a name for themselves with nothing but some elbow grease and a lot of dedication.
On top of this, the program allows you to be more flexible and gives you access to an income opportunity that simply wouldn’t be possible through standard employment, and it’s why so many are choosing to reap these benefits.
While SEAP is essentially a funding program for those just starting out on the business market, it’s also a way for newbies to find out more about what it takes to be an entrepreneur and receive some crucial training.
While you’re collecting your unemployment benefits, the SEAP will aim to educate you on how to run your own business and what you can do to turn it into a successful one with as little effort as possible.
This way, you can focus on learning the ins and outs of the market instead of juggling between your dreams and chasing after the income your livelihood depends on.
So long as you’re part of an approved training program, the SEAP will try to assist you to the best of their ability, and once you’re ready to turn your dreams into a reality, they’ll assist you in creating and running the business opportunity you’ve spent countless hours developing.
Eligibility and approved programs
Of course, access to SEAP is limited, meaning that only those who meet the criteria will actually be able to benefit from it, making each dollar spent on educating these up-and-coming entrepreneurs worth it.
In order to be eligible for SEAP, you must already have qualified for the standard unemployment benefits, as well as successfully enrolled in a government-approved training program that will guide you through running your own business.
These programs can focus on a number of different things that apply to running a business, ranging from entrepreneurial training to business counseling, and you’ll want to choose carefully before committing to one.
Eligibility for the SEAP also requires you to have been identified as potentially running out of benefits in the near future, as it prevents funding from being wasted on those that never needed assistance in the first place.
Similar to the majority of other government-backed assistance programs out there, applying for SEAP benefits is entirely free of charge, and you can do it by either filling out an online form or by going to your local WorkSource office.
From this point on, you can check your eligibility by contacting the local SEAP provider, some of which may require you to submit detailed information on your income levels in order to participate in the program.
To remain eligible while receiving benefits from SEAP, you must remain enrolled in the training program at all times, all the while making considerable progress every time you report to the local office.
If you do get yourself in a position where you’re forced to discontinue training or put it on hold, you’ll first want to get in touch with the Employment Security Department, which will then evaluate your case and inform you what to do next.
If you’re unable to continue being part of a program, you may be required to look for work opportunities near you or to become part of local job-search workshops in order to collect your benefits from SEAP.