Wednesday, June 19, 2024

How Long To Work To Get Unemployment

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Ask For A Complete Reason For Your Termination

State poised to change unemployment rules to get more people back to work

Immediately upon being fired, ask your former employer to provide the reason in detail. This may be a difficult conversation, so its important to approach it gracefully. One tactic is to use your breathing and body language to stay calm: take deep breaths in and out, and keep your legs uncrossed and hands unclenched.

You can phrase your question in several ways:

  • This is disappointing news. Can you give me more details on the reasons for my termination?
  • I regret that Ill be leaving this way. Can you give me additional context around your decision?

Understanding why you were fired could help you identify certain areas of improvement. If youve been let go for performance reasons, youll want to know how to avoid this issue again. There may be other reasons why youre being terminated, and if its not related to your performance, that will be a helpful context as you look for new jobs.

Applying For Unemployment Benefits

When you have been fired from a job, you can file online for unemployment. Its a good idea to get the paperwork for your claim in order as soon as possible after you receive notice of your termination. It can take time for your claim to be processed, and the sooner you file for benefits, the sooner a determination can be made as to your eligibility.

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Understanding The Base Period

To make sure applicants have done enough recent work to qualify for benefits, states look at their earnings, time worked, or both during the “base period.” In almost every state, the base period is one year: The earliest four of the five complete calendar quarters before the applicant filed for unemployment. For example, if someone files a claim for unemployment benefits in August of 2019, the base period would be April 1, 2018 through March 31, 2019.

Because the base period doesn’t include the quarter in which the applicant files for benefits or the quarter immediately preceding it, it doesn’t count the applicant’s most recent employment. In fact, it might exclude almost six months of work.

Many states allow workers to count this more recent work if they wouldn’t qualify for benefits using the regular base period. In these states, applicants can use an alternative base period consisting of the last four complete calendar quarters before filing for benefits. If an applicant filed for benefits in August of 2019, the alternative base period would be from July 1, 2018 through June 30, 2019. The alternative base period isn’t any longer than the standard base period it just allows applicants to include more of their recent work in determining their eligibility for benefits.

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The Ability To Claim Unemployment Compensation Will Depend On A Base Period A Required Earnings Amount And Having A No

Unemployment compensation programs vary from state to state but generally an employee must have worked for 12 months before they are eligible to claim benefits. In order to qualify for out of work financial support, a worker must have lost their previous job through no fault of their own.

The state unemployment agency will use a base period to determine eligibility, during which time an individual may need to meet a minimum earnings amount which varies by state. The employee may also need to meet state requirements for hours worked during the same time period, among other factors to be eligible for benefits.

When Can I Apply For Unemployment

When Will The Unemployed Go Back To Work? Many Laid Off ...

Once your job ends and you apply, you have to wait a week before making a claim. As soon as your job has ended, youre no longer working, so you can apply for unemployment insurance through your state department of labor.

If youre still owed severance or a final paycheck, you have to report that income, which would likely reduce the amount of unemployment youd get in the short term.

All states require a non-paid valid Waiting Week period before payments are processed.

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Check With Your State Unemployment Office

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.

You Forget Your Password

With overloaded websites and phone lines, now’s an especially crucial time to keep track of your username and password when you create an account with your state’s unemployment office. If you lose any of these details, it could seriously delay your application process.

Evermore says in some states, the only way to reset a forgotten password is to call the agency’s phone line, which won’t be quick or easy these days. Don’t count on getting an email to reset a password either overloaded websites may not have the capacity to send these out in a timely manner, if at all.

“In some states, the agency will have to physically mail you your password,” Evermore says.

Bottom line: “Make absolutely sure you keep track of your password.”

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What You Need To File For Unemployment Benefits

To expedite your claim, its best to have all the relevant information and documents at hand before you file. While requirements vary by state, you may need some or all of the following in order to apply:

  • Your Social Security number.
  • Your driver’s license, state ID, or motor vehicle ID card number.
  • Your mailing address.
  • Your telephone number.
  • The full company names and addresses of all employers that you worked for in the last two years.
  • The Employer Registration number or Federal Employer Identification Number of your most recent employer.
  • If you were a federal employee, copies of forms SF8 and SF50 if you had federal employment within the last 18 months.
  • If youre a service or ex-service member claiming benefits based on your military service, a copy of your most recent separation form DD 214.

The information contained in this article is not legal advice and is not a substitute for such advice. State and federal laws change frequently, and the information in this article may not reflect your own states laws or the most recent changes to the law.

Can Unemployment Take Money Back

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Some workers have to pay back unemployment benefits. If you are paid benefits, but then lose benefits when your employer appeals, you can be asked to repay the benefits you got earlier. Also, if you are overpaid because of some other mistake or you or the Department of Labor made, you may have to repay those benefits.

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Examples Of State Calculations

Unemployment is administered by state agencies in compliance with federal guidelines. Here weâll look at six states to see how they calculate unemployment benefits differently.


In Georgia, the standard base period is the first four of the last five calendar quarters. Georgia also offers an alternative base period when benefits cannot be established under the standard base period. The alternate base period is the most recent four calendar quarters.

Applicants must have earned qualifying wages in at least two quarters during the base period to meet the earnings requirement in Georgia. Applicants in Georgia must have earned at least $1,134 in each of their two qualifying quarters. The total wages for the base period must exceed 1.5 times the wages in the quarters with the highest earnings.


California calculates the base period and alternative base period in the same way that Georgia does. The alternative base period is used in California only for applicants who don’t qualify under the standard base period. California requires that you earned $1,300 in the highest quarter of your base period or $900 in your highest quarter and total base period earnings of 1.25 times your high quarter earnings.

Some states, like California, provide unemployment benefits to workers who are disabled. The funding for these programs in California comes from a tax on employees.



New York

To qualify for benefits in New York:


How To Apply For Unemployment In New York State

Persons seeking unemployment insurance benefits may file a claim online or by phone any time on Monday through Thursday between 7:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., Friday between 7:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., anytime on Saturday, or on Sunday until 7:00 p.m. You should file your claim within one week of losing your job to receive the maximum amount of benefits. Prior to receiving benefits, you will need to serve an unpaid waiting period equal to a full week of benefits.

To apply for unemployment insurance, you will need the following information:

  • Social Security Number
  • Drivers license or motor vehicle ID card number
  • Complete mailing address, including zip code
  • Telephone number where you can be reached during weekday business hours
  • Alien registration card number
  • Names and addresses for all employers for the past 18 months
  • Employer registration number or Federal Employer Identification Number of your latest employer
  • Copies of forms SF8 and SF50, if you were a federal employee in your last job
  • Form DD14, for separation from military service, if applicable
  • A check from your bank with the routing and account numbers, if you wish to register for direct deposit.

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Take Time For Reflection And Self

Take time after losing your job to de-stress and reflect on where you are. You might consider writing down your strengths and weaknesses on the job, what you enjoyed about your job, what you didnt enjoy and what other roles or industries sound interesting to you.

Be attentive to your need for self-care during this time. While it is important to update your resume, apply for jobs and participate in interviews, it is also productive to take breaks and reward your efforts in small, meaningful ways. This can be simply taking a walk outside, spending time with loved ones or reading a book.

You Should File Your Claim For Unemployment Benefits As Soon As You Lose Your Job But You Might Not Receive Your First Check For At Least A Few Weeks

List of States Extending Unemployment Benefits

Updated by Aaron Hotfelder, J.D., University of Missouri School of Law

If you have recently lost your job, you are probably anxious to start collecting unemployment benefits. Unemployment is available to those who are temporarily out of work, through no fault of their own. To qualify for unemployment benefits, you must file a claim with your state unemployment agency. The agency will then review your application, perhaps interview you , and make an eligibility determination. If the agency finds that you’re eligible for benefits, it will calculate your benefit amount and begin paying your benefits.

This article explains how the process generally works. However, each state follows its own procedures for handling unemployment claims. To find out how long you should expect to wait to start receiving benefits, contact your state’s unemployment agency.

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Before You Apply For Unemployment Frequently Asked Questions

The best way to file a new claim for unemployment insurance is through our improved online filing system. This is only for new claims.

If you already have a claim, please go to to make weekly certifications or to view your claim information.

Waiting weeks for unemployment benefits have been waived during the COVID-19 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.

How Long Does It Take To Get Unemployment

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In a Nutshell

The âins and outsâ of the unemployment application process depends upon the state in which you live. But regardless, if you need unemployment compensation, make sure to file your unemployment claim as soon as possible after losing your job. That way, your new claim will be placed into the review queue quickly, which means that youâll receive your benefits quicker than you would otherwise.

Written byNatasha Wiebusch, J.D..

  • Letâs Summarize…
  • Over the last year, states have received a record number of claims for unemployment benefits. These soaring numbers have occurred in response to COVID-19-related layoffs and furloughs.This sudden increase in claims has caused many state unemployment offices to temporarily change their practices and procedures.

    The federal government has also responded by passing legislation to expand unemployment benefits and ease eligibility requirements for special populations. Examples include people who wouldnât usually qualify for unemployment benefits due to being self-employed. This legislation created programs like the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance program and the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program.

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    How Many People Have Lost Their Jobs In The Recession

    Such issues historically have plagued long-idled workers. A big difference nowadays, he says, is that some of the nearly 9 million workers who lost jobs in the recession have yet to find work, or retire, and continue to drift in and out of the labor force, searching for jobs sporadically.

    While the number of initial jobless claims has been trending downward, its still over 800,000 people a week, which is well above the previous pre-pandemic weekly record. Harris has stopped paying her bills, including rent and utilities, and used what little money she had just to get by.

    Worked In Washington State

    How unemployment benefits are calculated

    COVID-19 update: Emergency rules have been adopted for workers and employers affected by COVID-19.

    To determine if you are eligible for unemployment benefits we examine:

    1. Whether you worked enough hours in your base year:

    • You must have worked at least 680 hours in your base year.
    • At least some wages must have been earned in Washington, unless you recently left the military and are currently located in Washington state.

    2. The reason you’re unemployed or not working full time. We’ll consider whether you:

    • Are on a leave of absence
    • Are still working

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    Who Is Eligible For Benefits

    Important update: Federal extended unemployment benefits expired September 4, 2021. Learn more here.

    When you first apply for Unemployment Insurance benefits, we look at a few different factors to see if you qualify.

    We need to know why you’re out of work, and whether your recent earnings meet the minimum required by law.

    After you first qualify for benefits, you will need to meet some additional requirements in order to keep receiving them.

    Some workers, like school employees and business owners, have their own unique qualifications. If you are self-employed and do not pay for Unemployment Insurance through your paycheck, you may not be eligible for benefits.

    Read out FAQs on who is eligible for benefits here.

    Why are you unemployed?
    Did you earn enough during your “base year period” of employment?

    To receive benefits, you have to meet a minimum earnings requirement during your . The base period is the timeframe used to determine if you qualify for UI benefits and to calculate your benefit amount. The regular base year period consists of the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters before the week you file an initial claim.Your consists of 52 weeks and is determined by the date you apply for Unemployment Insurance benefits, as outlined in the chart below:

    If your claim is dated in: Your claim is based on employment from:
    Are you a teacher or other school employee?
    Are you a corporate officer or business owner?

    Weekly Claims And Work Search Requirements

    Q) How do I file my weekly claim?

    A) To file a weekly claim, log in to your account. You must file a weekly claim for any week that you want payment, even if your eligibility is being decided or you have an appeal pending. Answer all required questions on the weekly continued claim.If you need assistance with your claim, call UI Customer Service at 1-866-239-0843 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

    Q) When should I file my weekly claim?

    A) The current week is the week that just ended on Saturday. Weekly claims must be filed 8:00 a.m. Sunday through 5:30 p.m. Friday for the prior week only. This means individuals have six days to file the previous week’s claim. Weekly claims can be filed online using a mobile device or computer. Have this information available when filing your weekly claim: Social Security Number, PIN, total amount of gross wages earned during the week, and total amount of gross holiday pay, gross vacation and severance, if received. Delay in filing your weekly claim could result in denial of benefits.

    Q) What happens if I file my weekly claim late?

    A) Filing your claim late may delay benefit payments or disqualify you for the weeks you filed late.

    Q) Can I still file a claim if I’m working part-time?

    Q) How many employer contacts do I need to make each week?

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    Requirements For Qualifying For Unemployment

    Eligibility requirements to qualify for unemployment compensation vary from state to state. However, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, there are two main criteria that must be met in order to qualify:

    1. You must be unemployed through no fault of your own. In this case, a persons unemployment must be caused by an external factor beyond his or her control, such as a layoff or a furlough. Quitting your job with a good reason or being fired for misconduct in the workplace will most likely render you ineligible for unemployment benefits.

    There may be an exception, however, if wrongful termination or constructive discharge played a role in your termination from employment.

    2. You must meet your states requirements for time worked or wages earned during a set period of time. This marker can be confusing, but its safe to assume that if you had a long-term job that you lost unexpectedly or without just cause, you would meet your states requirements.

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