Since the start of the pandemic, about 4.5 million Georgia unemployment claims have been processed — more than the nine previous years combined. Roughly 450,000 Georgians are currently receiving jobless benefits, but tens of thousands of others are waiting for hearings on their claims.
In January, the Southern Poverty Law Center filed a lawsuit against the department on behalf of six applicants who said they had waited months for their claims or appeals to be processed. The department argued they were managing an unprecedented number of claims, had made an effort to improve their response and should not give those applicants special treatment.
A Fulton judge agreed with the department and dismissed that case.