Jennifer Young
Community Specialist
Posted June 25, 2021

Some states are offering a $2,000 return-to-work bonus, is yours one of them?

Your state might pay you to go back to work. Some states are moving forward with a one-time "signing bonus" for unemployed residents who find work.
Jennifer Young
Community Specialist
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Some states are offering a $2,000 return-to-work bonus, is yours one of them?
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Are you on the hunt for a job? Here’s something to motivate your search: Your state might pay you to go back to work.

As more states are slashing the $300-per-week enhanced unemployment benefits, states are moving forward with legislation that would authorize one-time "signing bonuses" for unemployed residents who find work — and at least six that have already authorized such payments.

Governors in six states have authorized offering cash incentives to encourage residents to re-enter the workforce amid a growing labor shortage spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic

Here are the states that are paying to get back to work

Montana offers $1,200 for taking a job

In May 2021, Montana became the first state to authorize a "return-to-work" bonus as a way to replace the $300-per-week enhanced unemployment benefits that some claim disincentives employment, offering $1,200 to then-unemployed individuals who complete four full weeks of paid work.

New Hampshire gives $1,000 and Oklahoma pays $1,200 for working

Next up, New Hampshire and Oklahoma followed suit, and are offering one-time bonuses of $1,000 and $1,200, respectively.

Arizona pays $2,000 for full-time and $1,000 for part-time work

And, with the biggest bonus so far, Arizona is now offering the newly full-time employed a $2,000 payment after 320 hours of work, and $1,000 to anyone with a new part-time job after 160 hours of work.

Connecticut pays $1,000 and Colorado offers $1,200 to returning workers

Connecticut is paying out a one-time $1,000 bonus to the first 10,000 people who have been unemployed long-term who go back to work (after eight weeks of employment) before the end of the year, and Colorado has authorized $1,200 for those returning this in June — contingent on eight weeks of employment.

Each state has slightly different requirements for receiving the money, so be sure check with your state for guidelines.

More states are considering the payout

If your state wasn’t listed, that may change in your favor. At least two other states -- New York and North Carolina -- are considering return-to-work bonuses, and with labor shortages, that number may grow.


Does a return-to-work payout make you want to get back to work? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

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