Actor Ben Hermes (ex-Benjamin Hochman, “The Young and the Restless”) has learned that he doesn’t qualify for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program due to the residuals he’s received from his appearances in such shows as “CSI: Miami,” “Dollhouse” and “Great News,” among others. Residuals are payments made to SAG-AFTRA union members whose work is re-broadcast on television, a streaming service, or any other form of visual media, including radio, commercials and DVD/Blu-ray sales. “Y&R” is Hermes’ most recent acting credit, per his IMDb page.
Hermes is seeking unemployment assistance as he was recently furloughed from his freelance work as the creative director for a digital marketing company. “There are other states finding ways of making it possible for 1099 earners, the vast majority of their income coming from 1099, in order to allow them to have an appropriate amount of UI,” said Hermes in a recent on-air interview with ABC7 (KABC). “What I was awarded is just not going to be sufficient in order to help my family.”
Hoping for help from California’s Employment Development Department, Hermes couldn’t get anyone on the phone. “I’m upset about the wasted amount of time I’ve spent over the last seven weeks researching and doing webinars and trying to contact EDD to no avail,” he says. “And then when I do get to contact and reach a person, they hang up on me.”
Through April 25, 2020, the EDD has received and processed 3.4 million claims, of which 2.5 million are receiving benefits, notes ABC7. Nearly one million claimants have yet to receive benefits.
For more on this story, watch Hermes’ interview below.
Editor’s Note: This story has been corrected and better reflects that residuals from Hermes’ other acting credits are contributing to the problem, and not specifically “Y&R.” ABC7 has also corrected its story on its website.