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How Do I Apply For Unemployment In Virginia

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How to File for Unemployment in Virginia

Click to receive an estimate of your weekly benefit amount based on West Virginia wages reported to the Unemployment Division. Please be aware that this figure is only an estimate and may not be exact. It does not include out-of-state wages, military wages, or federal wages

Virginia Unemployment Benefits And Eligibility

COVID-19 UPDATE: Because the coronavirus pandemic has left so many Americans jobless, the federal government has given states more flexibility in granting unemployment benefits. If you have questions about whether youre eligible for unemployment benefits read our COVID-19 Unemployment Benefits and Insurance FAQ and check out Virginia’s claimant handbook.

How Can I Sign Up For Unemployment In Virginia

First, check all personal and employee information on your VA unemployment EDD application, and if anything is not up-to-date or accurate, including the dates of employment, make corrections to your application. If you are contesting your employers wrongful termination, make sure to fully explain why it was not your fault. Virginias applications for unemployment registration are available through phone consultation or online.

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Pandemic Unemployment Assistance Information

I supported the CARES Act to bolster our public health and economic recovery responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. This bill created the temporary Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program, which provides unemployment insurance benefits to people who arent usually covered by the traditional Virginia Unemployment Program. The Virginia Employment Commissions PUA application is now live. For more information please see the FAQ from the Virginia Employment Commission below.How do I know if I am ineligible for traditional unemployment insurance?First, apply for unemployment insurance by visiting vec.virginia.gov or vawc.virginia.gov or by calling 866-832-2363. You will then receive a Monetary Determination from the Virginia Employment Commission indicating you do not qualify for unemployment benefits. See here to view an example of a Monetary DeterminationIf you are self-employed or an independent contractor, gig economy worker, clergy, or working for a religious organization, you are not covered by the state unemployment insurance program. The monetary determination confirms that you are not eligible for Virginias traditional UI program.Do I need to file an appeal against the Monetary Determination?

You only need to appeal this determination if you feel that your wages should have been reported under the traditional UI program. Otherwise, you do not need to appeal but please see the information below concerning a new unemployment insurance program .

When And How Will I Be Paid

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Your first payment will be issued to you after you have served a waiting week and are eligible to receive benefits for the second week claimed.

However, Virginia has temporarily suspended the one-week waiting period due to COVID-19.

When you make an initial application for benefits, you will be able to select either direct deposit into your personal checking or savings account, or you will be able to collect benefits with a Virginia Debit Mastercard. Funds will be loaded on to the card which can be used any place where debit cards are allowed as a method of payment. It takes 2 business days for your funds to be deposited into your account after your weekly claim has been processed. You can also change your payment method at any time by logging on to your account on the VEC website or by calling 1-800-897-5630.

When you file an initial claim, you can expect your first payment within 14 calendar days after you file your weekly request for payment of benefits. You may not receive your payment on the same day of the week each time you file your request for payment. Timely payments depend on you meeting all weekly requirements as well.

However, no payment will be issued if you have a separation or able and available issue on your claim, until those issues have been addressed and appropriate action taken on them.

If you dont receive an anticipated payment, contact the VEC Customer Contact Center. However, you should wait at least 5 days after you file your request.

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Work Search Requirements Causing Benefit Payment Issues

Over the last few months many claimants have reported that their UI benefits have stopped, particularly since the VEC reinstated work search requirements, which their antiquated systems have struggled to process . This is despite eligible claimants applying for jobs and reporting this on their weekly claims. The Benefit Year End Date , discussed in earlier updates below, does not seem to be the cause of the issue in most cases.

Governor Northam had asked claimants to be patient, despite Virginia being ranked among the worst states in paying claims, but this is not of much help to the many jobless workers who rely on federal and state unemployment benefits to pay for essentials and make ends meet.

Coupled with ongoing fraudulent claims many claimants have been caught in a web of automated call systems and process bureaucracy as their claims go unpaid. Getting hold of a live VEC agent has also been a challenge with many reporting hours of hold times and/or getting an untrained/new agent who is not able to help them

While the VEC, in a recent court hearing, said it had made significant progress in resolving thousands of unpaid and retroactive claims, it is estimated over 50,000 claims are still pending for review. Because a lot of these claims have to be checked manually so it could unfortunately take several months for eligible claimants to get paid which the VEC has to legally to so. I will post updates as I get them and check the comments forum below for more information.

Do I Qualify For Virginia Unemployment Benefits

If you are wondering how to qualify for unemployment in Virginia, this section contains information about unemployment eligibility requirements. There are several stipulations to receive VA unemployment insurance coverage, and many applicants often neglect to make sure they meet minimum requirements.

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About Virginia Unemployment Benefits Extension

A Virginia unemployment insurance benefits extension is available to states when the economy is recovering. An unemployment extension is administered by the federal government in partnership with Virginia.

There are two parts to the program: Emergency Unemployment Compensation and Extended Benefits . EUCs federal unemployment extension was temporarily enacted during the 2008 recession to prevent harm to unemployed individuals. The Extended Benefits program was the permanent program created for times when Virginias unemployment rate rises above a certain rate.

Va Vec Latest News And Status On Pua Peuc And $300 Weekly Payment Or Claim Issues And System Updates

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The VEC has provided the following updates for claimants around the extended coverage period funded under the Biden ARP stimulus bill:

  • You do not need to reapply for the extended benefit weeks. The VEC will automatically enroll you in the appropriate program extension .
  • However, if you are notified that your benefit year has ended you must file a new traditional claim to establish a new benefit year.
  • You should continue to file your weekly claim for benefits as you normally would as long as you remain unemployed.
  • You will not need to contact the VEC in order for these program extensions to take effect. The VEC will mail you a Monetary determination that reflects the increase in eligibility.
  • The additional weekly payment of $300 under the FPUC program will be extended through September 4, 2021 as well.
  • The Mixed Earner Unemployment Compensation program which provides $100 extra per week to non PUA recipients who have had mixed income will be available from April 26, 2021.

There are however some known issues many claimants are reporting per the comments forum below this article. This includes:

I will post ongoing updates as they are released so stay tuned via the options below.

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How To Appeal A Denial Of Unemployment Benefits In Virginia

If your unemployment claim is denied, you have 30 days to appeal the decision to the VEC. A hearing will be held on your appeal, at which you may testify, present witnesses, and offer evidence before the Appeals Examiner makes a decision.

If you aren’t satisfied with the Appeals Examiner’s decision, you may appeal it to the Office of Commission Appeals within 14 days. If you are unhappy with the Commission’s decision, you may appeal in state court.

For more information on the unemployment process, including current eligibility requirements and benefits amounts, visit the website of the Virginia Employment Commission.

Are You Out Of Work Through No Fault Of Your Own

You must be out of work through no fault of your own to qualify for unemployment benefits in Virginia.

Collecting Unemployment After a Layoff

If you were laid off, lost your job in a reduction-in-force , or got “downsized” for economic reasons, you will meet this requirement.

Collecting Unemployment After Being Fired

If you were fired because you lacked the skills to perform the job or simply weren’t a good fit, you won’t necessarily be barred from receiving benefits. If, however, you were fired for misconduct, you may be disqualified from receiving benefits. For example, you will likely be ineligible for benefits if you were fired for lying about your criminal record, failing a drug test, or being repeatedly late or absent in violation of a known policy of your employer.

Collecting Unemployment After Quitting

You won’t be eligible for unemployment benefits if you quit your job voluntarily, without good cause. In general, good cause means that you had a compelling reason that left you no other choice than to leave. For example, if you left your job because of dangerous working conditions or discrimination that your employer refused to stop, you may be able to collect benefits. If you quit your job to relocate with a spouse who had to move for a new military assignment, you will still be eligible for benefits.

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Lost Wages Assistance In Virginia Payments Now Processing And Being Paid

The VEC has processed and made all weekly payments under the Lost Wages Assistance program . That started processing payments around October 16th and payments started hitting peoples bank accounts or debit cards from .

Amounts to qualified applicants were paid retroactively to August 1 for 6 weeks . Several readers have acknowledged the lack of information and delayed payment relative to other states as you can see in the comments below. The original payment date was Sep 30, but got changed several times by the VEC due to ongoing system programming issues. This is much later than other states. I will continue to post updates if new information comes to hand. See further details in the section below including a link to the VA LWA page.

Update from Bill on VEC issues So thanks to the assistance of all those on this site I was able to call the VEC and actually speak to someone regarding the $300. If you are on UI, PEUC, or anything but PUA you will have to call or self certify for LWA to receive the extra $300 retro pay. Also I was told that the payments will start being processed on the 15th of October and the money will hit accounts Thursday the 15th, Friday the 16th or Monday the 19th just depending on your institution or payment method. October 15th is the processing date. So I was told not to panic if the money is not in on the 15th. I hope this helps yall Virginians.

How Can I Extend Unemployment In Virginia

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If you have questions about how to get an unemployment extension in VA, try to find out if the federal government initiated a Virginia unemployment compensation extension. If you are still receiving benefits, or eligible to receive an extension, you would be sent a notice from the VEC instructing you regarding how to file unemployment benefits extension and satisfy any other requirements, such as an increased effort to find work. If you are unsure, you can also check with the VEC office, local career center or unemployment agency. There also will be a notice on the Department of Labor website if unemployment extension is in effect.

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What Documents Do I Need To File My Claim

Although your initial application was made by phone or internet, to protect your identity, you may be asked to provide your Social Security card and a photo ID for verification purposes. Make sure you have these items available and can provide them upon request. If you are not a citizen of the United States, you will be asked to supply government issued documentation showing your work status. Your document must include an identification number, the name of the agency that issued the document, and an expiration date.

You will be asked to complete an Initial Unemployment Compensation Application, wherein you will provide the business names and complete mailing addresses for all employers for whom you worked during the last 18 months, along with the dates of employment and reason for separation from each employer.

If you were separated from the following entities, you will be asked to provide the following forms:

  • Military: DD-214 form, the number four copy
  • Federal government: SF-8 form
  • Federal Emergency Management Agency : SF-8 form and SF-50 form.

How To File Weekly Claims

To file your weekly claims in the state of Virginia log on to www.vec.virginia.gov/unemployed or go through the Voice Response System . Always use a touchtone phone while using the VRS. Keep your social security number, PIN and job contacts ready.

To hear the VRS in English press 1, to hear the VRS in Spanish press 2. To reach your claim and benefits press 1. To file your weekly claim benefits press 2. Then enter your 9-digit social security number. Enter your 6-digit pin. Always remember to speak clearly when speaking to the VRS.

Once you answer all your questions you will be informed whether your claim will be processed or not.

To file a toll-free claim you can call in at 1-866-832-2363 from Monday to Friday between 8:15 am and 4:30 pm . To file weekly claims, call toll free at 1-800-897-5630.

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Questions And Answers About Unemployment Benefits

Q. When should I file a claim for unemployment compensation benefits?Awww.vec.virginia.govQ. My hours have been reduced. Can I apply for unemployment compensation benefits?AQ. What happens after I complete my unemployment insurance application?AQ. What are the work search requirements?

A. Beginning with the week of May 30 through June 5, 2021, individuals wishing to request a weekly claim for payment of unemployment benefits will be required to make an active search for work and report those contacts when filing their weekly-continued claim for benefits in order to receive payment. In addition, they will be required to be able to work, available for work, actively seeking and unable to obtain suitable work and be willing to accept any offer of suitable work without attaching any undue restrictions not usual and customary for the type work they are seeking. View more information and work search video here.

Q. How much in benefits do I get and for how long?AQ. What if Im working but my hours have been reduced?

A. You may be eligible for partial benefits. A partially unemployed person is one who, during a calendar week, was employed by a regular employer and had earnings that were less than his weekly benefit amount, and who worked less than his normal customary full-time hours because of a lack of work.

Q. What if Im working part-time? Am I still required to actively seek work?AQ. What if I return to full-time work?AA

Covid 19 Enhanced Benefits In Virginia

Virginians face obstacles while attempting to apply for unemployment

Under the CARES act, there are three types of federal unemployment assistance available: Pandemic Unemployment Assistance : expands eligibility for traditionally ineligible individuals for unemployment benefits, including independent contractors and self-employed individuals. Recipients may receive up to 39 weeks of benefit payments under this program.

Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation : adds $600 per week and the regular benefits that recipients of Unemployment Insurance are entitled to receive the benefit is retroactive to the week beginning March 29, 2020, and the program expired on July 31, 2020.

Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation : provides an additional 13 weeks of Unemployment benefits to regular unemployment insurance recipients.

If you have exhausted benefits paid through the regular unemployment and PEUC program, you may be entitled to receive up to 50% of the total amount received on your regular unemployment benefits through the Extended Benefit program. This program covers an additional 6 to 13 weeks of unemployment benefits, depending upon the number of weeks you were eligible for benefits on your original unemployment insurance claim.

VA Lost Wages Assistance Payment Details and Schedule

Web and/or phone issues with accessing the Virginia Unemployment system

Initial claims are filed through the Virginia Workforce Connection here.

Filing an Initial Claim

  • The physical address for each employer
  • Telephone number

Filing Weekly Claims

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How To Get Cobra

Group health plans must give covered employees and their families a notice explaining their COBRA rights. Plans must have rules for how COBRA coverage is offered, how beneficiaries may choose to get it and when they can stop coverage. For more COBRA information, see COBRA Premium Subsidy. The page links to information about COBRA including:

Filing An Appeal In Virginia

If you are denied Virginia unemployment benefits, you have the right to appeal. You are not given much time to file an appeal, so be sure to request a hearing as soon as possible. You can do so in any of the following ways:

  • In person at the VEC local office at which your original unemployment claim was filed. Appeal forms are available in all local offices, and appeals delivered by courier are considered in-person filings.
  • Online via the Virginia Internet Appeals website.

Once your appeal has been submitted, it will be reviewed to determine whether your original decision was correct.

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