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How Can I Be Eligible For Unemployment

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Where Do I File For Unemployment Insurance

Would I Be Eligible for Unemployment?

Unemployment insurance is a joint state-federal program that provides cash benefits to eligible workers. Each state administers a separate unemployment insurance program, but all states follow the same guidelines established by federal law.

Please see the map and list below to find the contact information for your state in order to apply for Unemployment Benefits.

How Long Does It Take To Receive Unemployment Benefits

Once you submit your claim, you should expect to wait at least three weeks before hearing whether you were approved. However, since unemployment claims have skyrocketed because of the coronavirus pandemic, it may now take even longer to receive a verdict on your application, said David Bakke, human resource specialist at DollarSanity.

In New York alone, the labor department experienced a 900% increase in web traffic and a 16,000% spike in phone calls between March 23 and March 28. As unemployment rates grow and the department continues to receive more claims than itâs used to, applicants are likely to experience delays.

Do All The Unemployed Get Ui

No. In ordinary times, most unemployed workers dont receive UI benefits. UI does not cover people who leave their jobs voluntarily, people looking for their first jobs, and people reentering the labor force after leaving voluntarily. Self-employed workers, gig workers, undocumented workers, and students traditionally arent eligible to apply for UI benefits.

In addition, most states require unemployed workers to have worked a minimum amount of time or received a minimum amount of earnings from their previous employer to be eligible. The minimum amount of earnings required to qualify for UI benefits ranged from $1,000 to $5,000 in 2019. Due to differences in eligibility criteria, the UI recipiency ratethe portion of unemployed people who receive UI benefitsvaries significantly across states. In the fourth quarter of 2019, Mississippis 9 percent recipiency rate was the lowest, while Massachusettss 57 percent rate was the highest.

Another consequence of earnings and work history requirements is that low wage workersare among the least likely to get UI benefits.

Recommended Reading: When Will Indiana Reinstate Unemployment Benefits

How Do I Become Eligible For Unemployment Benefits

When a person becomes unemployed, it can become a financial hardship if the individual is not eligible for unemployment benefits. In the United States, the US Department of Labor determines eligibility for unemployment compensation. Most countries with large labor forces have the same basic guidelines as the US for unemployment benefits.

In the US, in order to become eligible for unemployment benefits, the worker has to be able to show proof of employment for the job worked and prove that the reason he or she became unemployed was not the workers fault. Some examples of qualified unemployment would be a situation where the employee was terminated for a reason other than misconduct or that the employee voluntarily resigned from the company due to good cause. When an employee leaves a company for a good cause, this includes a work environment that is harmful to the worker, such as sexual harassment or abusive behavior from co-workers. Other good cause reasons would be job conditions that are dangerous or mentally stressful to the worker.

Do I Qualify For Unemployment Insurance

Am I Eligible for Unemployment Benefits in California?

There are things you need to know before you apply, and steps you must take after filing your claim for unemployment insurance benefits.

Unemployed Through No Fault of Your Own

The Unemployment Insurance program provides benefits to workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own and who are able, available, and looking for work. You may file a claim for benefits the first day after becoming separated from employment or after your employer has significantly reduced your work hours. Information will be gathered from you as well as your separating employer and an agency determination will be based on whether you meet the eligibility requirements under state law.

You Must Have Qualifying Base Period Wages

You must have earned an average of $780.01 in each of 2 quarters of a time frame called the Base Period and the second highest quarter must be over $900 or 6 times the weekly benefit amount. If youve earned sufficient wages during this time frame, the wages earned will then be used to calculate your weekly benefit amount and the number of weeks you may receive benefits. The Base Period is the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters prior to the quarter in which your initial claim is filed. A calendar quarter is three months of either January – March, April – June, July – September or October – December.

Also Check: How To Sign Up For Unemployment In Kentucky

Did Not Work In Washington State

You;cannot;apply for unemployment benefits in Washington or file weekly claims here if you did not work in this state during the past 18 months. The;only;exceptions are if you were in the military or worked for the federal government.

You must file your claim with one of the state where you worked in the last 18 months.;Contact each state;where you worked to find out your claim options for those states.

You Have Paid Ei Premiums

If you are employed in insurable employment, your employer will deduct EI premiums from your wages or salary. These premiums go into the EI Fund. There is no minimum or maximum age for paying EI premiums.

You pay EI premiums on all your earnings up to a maximum amount. In 2020, for every $100 you earn, your employer will deduct $1.58, until your annual earnings reach the maximum yearly insurable amount of $54,200. The maximum amount of premiums to be paid in 2020 is therefore $856.36.

Since Quebec has its own program that offers maternity, paternity, and parental benefits, the Government of Canada has adjusted the premiums accordingly for that province. In 2020, the premium rate for workers in Quebec is set at $1.20 for every $100 of earnings, up to a maximum amount of $650.40 for the year.

Recommended Reading: How Do I Get My Unemployment Back Pay

How Do I Become Eligible For Unemployment

The only requirement for unemployment is to be out of work, but in order to be eligible for unemployment compensation, a worker must meet certain criteria mandated by the state in which he or she resides. Many employers pay unemployment insurance for each employee while they are employed, so in essence, a laid-off worker is applying for unemployment compensation already collected under that fund. To become eligible for benefits, however, a worker must become unemployed through no fault of his or her own.

One way to become eligible for unemployment compensation is to be laid off through lack of work. If an employer decides to let go of an employee during an economic downturn, that employee can get compensation immediately after his or her last day on the job. The employee did not lose his or her job because of any personal misconduct, nor did he or she quit voluntarily. These conditions of job separation become very significant when the state unemployment department determines eligibility for benefits.

One Of My Workers Quit Because He Said He Would Prefer To Receive The Unemployment Compensation Benefits Under The Cares Act Is He Eligible For Unemployment If Not What Can I Do

Inside Indiana Unemployment: Am I Eligible?

No, typically that employee would not be eligible for regular unemployment compensation or PUA. Eligibility for regular unemployment compensation varies by state but generally does not include those who voluntarily leave employment. Similarly, to receive PUA, an individual must be ineligible for regular unemployment compensation or extended benefits under state or federal law, or pandemic emergency unemployment compensation, and satisfy one of the eligibility criteria enumerated in the CARES Act, as explained in Unemployment Insurance Program Letter 16-20. There are multiple qualifying circumstances related to COVID-19 that can make an individual eligible for PUA, including if the individual quits his or her job as a direct result of COVID-19. Quitting to access unemployment benefits is not one of them. Individuals who quit their jobs to access higher benefits, and are untruthful in their UI application about their reason for quitting, will be considered to have committed fraud.

If desired, employers can contest unemployment insurance claims through their state unemployment insurance agencys process.

Recommended Reading: How To Get Paid From Unemployment

Community Services Block Grant Program

The Community Services Block Grant Program is designed to help members of low-income households be self-sufficient. The funds are distributed by local governments and non-profit agencies called Community Action Agencies.

These funds are used in a variety of ways to combat poverty, including:

  • Providing emergency health, food, housing, day care, and transportation assistance
  • Housing counseling
  • Nutrition programs and federal surplus food distribution
  • Community gardening projects

Fpuc Authorization And Funding History

As noted, additional unemployment benefits of $600 per week were originally authorized by the CARES Act through July 31, 2021. This was followed by the Lost Wages Assistance program, authorized by an Aug. 8 presidential memo and subsequent Department of Labor guidance. LWA funds, which were expected to last from Aug. 1, 2020, to Dec. 27, 2020, were depleted by Sept. 5, 2020.

The signing of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 into law Dec. 27, 2020, restarted the FPUC program and authorized $300 FPUC payments beginning after Dec. 26, 2020, and ending on or before March 14, 2021.

Most recently, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which became law March 11, 2021, extended FPUC payments through Sept. 6, 2021. ARPA also provides a waiver of federal income taxes on the first $10, 200 in unemployment benefits received in 2020.

If the state where you worked before becoming unemployed drops out of FPUC, you are not eligible for FPUC program benefits.

Also Check: How Do I Sign Up For Unemployment In Washington State

Changes To Support You During Covid

Temporary changes have been made to the Employment Insurance program to help you access EI regular benefits. The following changes are in effect until September 2021, and could apply to you:

  • the waiting period may be waived
  • a minimum unemployment rate of 13.1% applies to all regions across Canada
  • if your regions unemployment rate is higher than 13.1%, well use the higher actual rate to calculate your benefits
  • you only need 120 insured hours to qualify for benefits because youll get a one-time credit of 300 insured hours to help you meet the required 420 insured hours of work
  • youll receive at least $500 per week before taxes, but you could receive more
  • youll be eligible for up to 50 weeks of regular benefits
  • if you received the Canada Emergency Response Benefit , the 52-week period to accumulate insured hours will be extended
  • Sections on this page impacted by these temporary changes are flagged as;Temporary COVID-19 relief.

    Check With Your State Unemployment Office

    Can I Collect Unemployment If I

    Check with your state unemployment office;for information on what benefits you are entitled to.;Initial benefits may be different from weekly benefits, there may be a waiting period before you receive payment, and some states have maximum payout amounts or timelines.

    It’s important to do your research and contact your states unemployment agency quickly, so you have all the accurate information you need to collect the benefits youre entitled to.

    You will find information on qualifying for benefits in your location on your state’s unemployment website, as well as detailed information on what you need to do to submit a claim.

    Read Also: Can You Do Unemployment Online

    How Many People Could Face Eviction In The Coming Months

    Goldman Sachs, the financial giant has reported that as many as 750,000 households could face eviction this year.

    The organization also noted that as many as 3.5 million households owe landlords around $17 billion.

    What’s included in the bill to extend federal pandemic unemployment insurance?

    The week before federal unemployment programs ended, more than 9.3 million people claimed benefits. With the ending of these programs came news that 35% of respondents to a survey conducted by the US Census Bureau in late said that they were behind on their rent and mortgage payments.

    Progressive Democrats, including Representatives Cori Bush and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, are pushing a new bill to reinstate federal benefits with retroactive coverage.

    During a town hall hosted by Rep. Ocasio-Cortez, she said that the new bill would extend benefits through February 2022. The bill would also allow those eligible to claim benefits retroactively from 6 September.

    Read more on the likelihood of the bill passing in our full coverage.

    How To Collect Unemployment Benefits If You Are Self

    Statistics show that more and more people are choosing to be self-employed as a sole proprietor or the owner of a small start-up firm, making use of technology to create niches for themselves as the United States continues to move toward a virtual economy.

    Entrepreneurship is exciting and comes with a big set of rewards, but it also comes with a certain amount of risk attached to it as well. Most times, you are operating without a financial safety net. But the good news is, when you meet certain conditions, you can collect unemployment insurance benefits.

    The key for you to understand is that before you can take money out of the system, you must pay money into the system.

    The easiest way for self-employed people to do so is to set their business up as an S corporation. Them you must also structure the corporation so that you draw a salary as an employee of the corporation. When you draw a salary, youll then be required to pay a percentage of your earnings into your states unemployment compensation fund.

    If you are self-employed but choose to remain so as a sole proprietor, freelancer or independent contractor, you wont be able to draw unemployment because you have not set up the mechanisms necessary to pay into your states unemployment benefits fund.

    The best thing to do is to check with your particular states unemployment benefits administrator and find out exactly what rules apply to you before creating an S corporation.

    Recommended Reading: When Will I Get My Unemployment

    What You Need To Know

    • Update 12/29/20: The federal government has extended the federal unemployment benefit programs available through the CARES Act for an additional 11 weeks. Pandemic Unemployment Assistance and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation will be available through March 14, 2021, with qualified claimants benefits fully phasing out by April 5, 2021. Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation benefits will resume with $300 weekly payments until March 14, 2021.

    • To receive these extended federal benefits, continue to certify weekly while unemployed. To allow your fellow New Yorkers to reach NYS DOL representatives about regular matters, please do not call to inquire about the federal program extensions at this time. As we receive additional guidance on the federal programs from US DOL, we will provide updates on our website, social media platforms, and directly via emails and texts.

    • Waiting weeks for unemployment benefits have been waived during this crisis. If youve seen the term waiting week on your payment history, it is a relic of our existing system and does NOT impact your benefits.
    • To collect regular unemployment insurance benefits, you must be ready, willing, and able to work. We understand that many of you are unable to work due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact of NYS on PAUSE. If you would otherwise be able to work, you should answer ‘YES’ in order to receive your benefits.

    Next Section

    How Much Money Are You Eligible To Receive For Unemployment

    California Unemployment New Forms Update – You Could Be Eligible Now

    Unemployment benefits arenât designed to replace all of the income you were making, and the amount you are eligible for varies by state. For example, New Jersey offers the highest benefit limit at $713 per week, Missouriâs is $320, New Yorkâs is $504, Mississippiâs is $320, and Louisiana offers the lowest at $247. Some states offer higher amounts for applicants with dependents.

    Each state also has its own minimums for earned wages and time worked within a base period, which affects whether you qualify for unemployment benefits. Your base period is determined by the last four or five calendar quarters you worked before filing for unemployment. Within that base period, you take the largest amount of wages you earned in a quarter and divide it by 26.

    Remember that under the CARES Act, qualified Americans will receive an extra $600 in addition to their state-given unemployment benefits through July 31.

    Also Check: How Do I Find Out If I Qualify For Unemployment

    Why Do Unemployment Benefits Have To End

    Unemployment benefits provide a safety net for workers who are laid off from their jobs, until they can get work again. They are not meant to be a permanent solution. If unemployment benefits did not expire, there would be far less incentive for unemployed workers to look for jobs, and the taxes paid to fund the program would become too onerous to maintain.

    Unfortunately, sometimes even with diligent effort, a person may remain unemployed after their regular and/or extended unemployment benefits end. If that happens to you, you will need to redouble your efforts to find a job. If it has not been up to now, your full-time job should be to find a new job. You might consider moving to a new city or state with more opportunities for work.

    If you cannot support yourself or your family without assistance, there are still other government programs you may qualify for including;Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program;,;Medicaid,;Temporary Assistance for Needy Families;, or other;social service programs.

    Remember that there are also many community and church-sponsored relief programs, including food banks, soup kitchens, and employment counseling, that are available. Your local library or community center should be able to help you find assistance in your area.

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