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by SixFigureStart | September 21, 2009

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Good news for anyone who's looking at the possibility of their unemployment check running out in the near future: Congress is very close to signing a bill to extend unemployment benefits by 13 weeks for people living in states with an unemployment rate above 8.5 percent. According to the Associated Press, "the 13-week extension would supplement the 26 weeks of benefits most states offer and the federally funded extensions of up to 53 weeks that Congress approved in legislation last year and in the stimulus bill enacted last February."

How do you know if you're living in a state with more than 8.5 percent unemployment? Well, you could start by checking out this handy map provided by the AP:

By the looks of it, anyone living in the South East, the Rust Belt, or on the West Coast has a decent chance of being covered by the extension, but to be certain, check your state against this list (source: BLS).

• Alabama: 10.4% • Alaska: 8.3% • Arizona: 9.1%• Arkansas: 7.1%
• California: 12.2% • Colorado: 7.3% • Connecticut: 8.1% • Delaware: 8.1%
• D.C.: 11.1% • Florida: 10.7% • Georgia: 10.2% • Hawaii: 7.2%
• Idaho: 8.9% • Illinois: 10.0% • Indiana: 9.9% • Iowa: 6.8%
• Kansas: 7.1% • Kentucky: 11.1% • Louisiana: 7.8% • Maine: 8.6%
• Maryland: 7.2% • Massachusetts: 9.1% • Michigan: 15.2% • Minnesota: 8.0%
• Mississippi: 9.5% • Missouri: 9.5% • Montana: 6.6% • Nebraska: 5.0%
• Nevada: 13.2% • New Hampshire: 6.9% • New Jersey: 9.7% • New Mexico: 7.5%
• New York: 9.0% • North Carolina: 10.8% • North Dakota: 4.3% • Ohio: 10.8%
• Oklahoma: 6.8% • Oregon: 12.2% • Pennsylvania: 8.6% • Puerto Rico: 15.1%
• Rhode Island: 12.8% • South Carolina: 11.5% • South Dakota: 4.9% • Tennessee: 10.8%
• Texas: 8.0% • Utah: 6.0% • Vermont: 6.8% • Virginia: 6.5%
• Washington: 9.2% • West Virginia: 9.0% • Wisconsin: 8.8% • Wyoming: 6.6%

--Posted by Phil Stott, Vault Staff Writer

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