Important Contacts For Texas Unemployment Claims
For more information on unemployment benefits in Texas, use the following contact information.
- Job search registration via WorkinTexas. This is also a good source of information for job postings for employers who are interested in hiring veterans.
- Employment Benefits Services FAQs
- To request payment for weeks of unemployment, get payment information, or check on the status of your claim, call the Texas unemployment automated telephone system at 800-558-8321. Hours are 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
- To speak to a customer service representative, call 800-939-6631.
- You can also contact the Texas Workforce Commission at its main office: 512-463-2222.
- For complaint resolution, contact the TWC ombudsman at 800-628-5115.
Estimated Weekly Benefit Amount
The calculator returns your estimated WBA based on your highest quarterly earnings during the base period.
The maximum WBA is $521 for highest quarterly earnings of $13,025+. The minimum WBA is $69, provided you meet eligibility requirements.
You must have at least two calendar quarters with earnings in order to be eligible for a WBA.
Your total wages earned over the base period must be at least 37x your WBA.
The calculator will return an estimated weekly benefit rate of $0, if it appears that you do not meet the eligibility requirements described above.
In addition, if you qualified for benefits on a prior claim, you must have earned 6x your new WBA since that time.
Your WBA may be reduced by other compensation that you receive and certain mandated payments, such as delinquent child support payments.
Q What Is Unemployment Insurance
Unemployment Insurance is an employer-paid insurance program that helps workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own. It provides temporary financial help to qualified individuals, based on their previous earnings, while they are looking for other work. Employer taxes and reimbursements support the Unemployment Trust Fund. Employers cannot deduct any money from employees’ paychecks to pay for this program. Individuals can apply for UI benefits anytime online or by calling the TWC Tele-Center nearest their location.
The law governing UI benefits in Texas is the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act, which is Title 4, Subtitle A of the Texas Labor Code. The Act is available online at www.texasworkforce.org , and it is in the Vernon’s law book series found in most public libraries.
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Benefit Options For Wages In More Than One State
If you worked in more than one state during your base period as defined in Eligibility & Benefit Amounts:
- You can apply for benefits in any state where you have base period wages. The state you choose will become your paying state. See Potential Benefit Amounts and Contact Information by State below.
- You may either:
- Ask the paying state to combine all of your wages in a single unemployment benefits claim. If you combine wages, you can only receive benefits from one state. If you earned enough wages in your paying state to qualify for the maximum benefit amount, then the paying state will not combine wages from other states on your claim.
- Use only the wages earned in the paying state. Then based upon the law and base period provisions of the other states where you have wages, you may be able to use those other state wages to apply for benefits in the future.
The paying state will process your unemployment benefits application according to the rules of that state. The paying state asks the other state to transfer your wage records. The paying state can then determine if you earned enough wages after combining wages from other states to qualify for benefits under that states laws.
Are You Eligible For Unemployment
First, make sure you are eligible for unemployment. While it varies based on your state, you generally need two things to qualify. First, you need to have lost your job through no fault of your own. It typically means you are ineligible if you quitalthough there are exceptions, like if you quit because of impossible work conditions. If you are fired for cause, you also are likely ineligible.
You also have to have been employed for a minimum amount of time or have earned a minimum amount in compensation.
Once you find out whether you are eligible, you can file a claim for unemployment benefits. If youre not sure about your eligibility, check with your state unemployment office. You dont want to lose out on unemployment compensation because you didnt think you would qualify.
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Cares Act Unemployment Compensation Expansion For Covid
The outbreak of COVID-19 has caused unprecedented changes to the lives of individuals all across Texas and across the globe. Since March 14, the Texas Workforce commission helped over 1 million Texans file unemployment claims which is equivalent to around 75 weeks of claims in a months time.
The Governor declared the COVID-19 Pandemic a disaster March 13, 2020 therefore, the TWC can backdate a claim to the prior Sunday which is March 8, 2020 if an individual was unemployed and has been trying to file but has not yet been successful. If the individual became unemployed subsequent to March 13, 2020 and has been attempting file but not yet successful then their claim will be effective the Sunday prior to the date they were separated from work.
The Texas Workforce Commission is working with federal, state and local government officials and agencies to help manage the Coronavirus pandemic.
Under the CARES act, there are three types of federal unemployment assistance now available:
Additionally, TWC has begun rolling out the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation , adding an additional $600 per week for claimants. Individuals receiving Unemployment Insurance or federal extended benefits qualify for the additional $600.
Independent contractor, self-employed or 1099 workers have until December 26, 2020 to provide their 2019 Internal Revenue Service Form 1040 and Schedule C, F, or SE.
How Much Money Will I Receive In Unemployment Benefits
The minimum weekly unemployment benefit in Texas is $69 and the maximum is $521.
Your earnings during your base period will be used to work out your weekly payment. In Texas, this is calculated by dividing the quarter with the highest earnings by 25 and rounding to the nearest dollar. To get an idea of how much that will be:
- Work out what your base period is and find the quarter in which you earned the most money.
- If you earned, say, $9,300 during your highest quarter, divide that by 25 and round to the nearest dollar. It should look like this: $9,300 ÷ 25 = $372.
You will receive a Determination Notice in the mail letting you know how much you will be eligible for. Be aware that that unemployment benefits are considered taxable income, so these are pre-tax amounts.
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Texas 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 Texas claimant handbook.
The Texas Workforce Commission Announced That Texans Will Stop Receiving Extended Unemployment Benefits Following A Decrease In The Unemployment Rate
Texas has always given 26 weeks of jobless assistance historically. However, when the global pandemic burst in with most of workplaces closed, unemployment rates grew violently over 12.8% becoming states highest rate since 1986 when it nearly topped 10%. The concern on how the pandemic was going to affect the residents finances triggered Gov. Greg Abbott to pass extended benefits of up to 13 additional weeks during periods of unemployment which surpass a 6.5 per cent threshold.
Nevertheless, with the current states unemployment rate falling below the threshold, at 6.2 per cent, according to the US Department of Labor, there is no need to continue with the extension.
Texas Stat Time:Unemployed Texans: down by 32.1k!Employed Texans: up by 68.4k!Current Job Openings on as of August 24: 900,343
Texas Workforce Commission
Texas pays unemployment benefits based on a workers recent earnings. Weekly benefits ranged from $60 to $415 as of 2010. Unemployment benefits provide a substitute for earnings when a worker loses a job, while he looks for another job. Recipients must qualify to receive benefits and conduct an active job search while collecting unemployment. Texas employers pay taxes to fund the program, administered by the Texas Workforce Commission.
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Looking For Work As An Independent Contractor
With digital marketing and social media having such a big impact on todays job market, how we define looking for work has drastically changed.
In the same interview with Forbes, Bruce Brumberg, JD asked whether social media promotions, such as Instagram posts of new graphic designs or samples of photography counted as proof of looking for work.
Amanda Thibodeau responded with: These may qualify. Each states program lays out what types of work search activities must be reported each week, such as responding to job postings or sending out résumés. Given the unique situations gig workers and freelancers are involved in, it is likely the states will continue to be flexible on their work search requirements.
File An Unemployment Claim Texas
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You must be unemployed through no fault of your own, and you must have earned sufficient wages in your base period . Also, you must be able and available for full-time work.
You can apply online or over the phone by contacting 1-800-939-6631.
The amount you receive will depend on your base period wages. The minimum weekly benefit is $69 and the maximum is $521. The Unemployment Benefits Estimator can be used to estimate weekly benefits.
The length of time that you will receive benefits is also based on how much you made during the base period, but not more than 26 weeks.
You must continue to file weekly,and you must respond when contacted by the Texas Workforce Commission. You must register as a job seeker within three business days of applying for benefits on WorkInTexas.com or at a Texas Workforce Solutions office. Also, you must continue to be able and available for full-time work. You must actively seek employment, while keeping a record of your work search activities using the Work Search Log. Finally, you must accept suitable work, and this includes considering jobs that pay 75% of your normal wage by your 8th week of unemployment.
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How To Request A Payment
If you have an active UI claim, you can request a benefits payment by phone or online. You will need:
- Your earnings amount for each week
- Your work search activities for each week
To Request Unemployment Benefits Payments Online: Log on to Unemployment Benefits Services. To Request a Payment by Phone: After your unemployment claim is on file, call Tele-Serv toll free at 1-800-558-8321.
- WHEN TO CALL: Sunday 8 a.m. 6 p.m. and Monday Wednesday 7 a.m. 6 p.m.
- If you miss your assigned day, call Thursday or Friday 7 a.m. 6 p.m.
Individuals needing telecommunications devices for the deaf can communicate with TWC-UI offices by using Relay Texas. Those numbers are 1-800-735-2989 or 1-800-735-2988 Dont wait for a determination to request your payment. You should request payment one to two weeks after you first apply for benefits and every two weeks after that. You can find the date you are scheduled to request payment on your Unemployment Benefits Services account or by calling Tele-Serv.
How to Manage and Review Your Claim
How Much Money Can You Receive From Texas Unemployment Benefits
How much Texas unemployment benefits can you receive?
This is a question that many people who are unemployed ask themselves, but its not always an easy one to answer.
The Texas Unemployment Benefits amount varies depending on how much money the individual has earned in the past year, among other factors.
For this article, we will explore how Texas unemployment benefits work and how much you could be eligible for if you are laid off from your job.
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Reasons For Denial Of Benefits
If you do not meet the wage requirements , the state will deny benefits. The state will notify you of this decision in the Statement of Wages and Potential Benefit Amount.
If you qualify through the wage determination, the TWC can still deny benefits for other reasons. Most often, the state denies benefits because of separation issues. The state will notify you regarding a denial of your claim because of such issues.
If your actions or decisions cause your separation from work, the TWC will deny benefits. If:
- you quit work without good cause, or for reasons not connected to your work
- you were dismissed for misconduct connected to work.
If you quit to go back to school, decide to stay home with children or become self-employed, the state will deny benefits. They are good reasons to quit, but benefit you personally, not your employer.
If your employer dismisses you for cause, the state may consider the dismissal to be misconduct connected to the work. Misconduct is generally any activity that shows a complete disregard for the employers interest. This could be a repeated violation of a policy, or a one-time incident.
There are other non-separation issues that may cause the TWC to deny your claim. Some are:
- Ability to work
- refusing suitable employment
Quit and Still Eligible
You may have quit for a good cause. You made a decision to leave like a reasonable person might in similar circumstances.
Fired and Still Eligible
Are There Special Rules For Unemployment During The Covid
There are millions of employees who have had their hours cut drastically, been forced out of their jobs temporarily , or even laid off while the country is fighting COVID-19. Individual states are being offered assistance from the federal government in order to expand unemployment benefits. However, state UI responses to the crisis may vary.
The main changes in unemployment benefits at the federal level, as part of the CARES Act, include:
- An extra $600 in weekly benefits, in addition to regular state benefit amounts
- Additional 13 weeks of UI coverage once state UI benefits are exhausted
- Expanded eligibility, which includes independent contractors, gig economy workers, and other self-employed workers, for up to 39 weeks of benefits
A local employment lawyer can help you understand the temporary measures enacted in your state.
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Reporting Work & Earnings
When making a payment request, claimants must report hours worked and gross earnings from any full-time, part-time or temporary work net profit from self-employment vacation or holiday pay and commissions. Those earnings must be reported even though the claimant may not have yet received payment. There are no exceptions. TWC computes how much a claimant can earn before we deduct those earnings from their weekly benefit amount plus 25%. Claimants who earn more than their weekly benefit amount plus 25% cannot receive benefits for that week.
How Is Twc Funded
Most of the TWC budget is funded through federal sources, such as funding for administration of the Unemployment Insurance program, and grants for employment and retraining services under Wagner Peyser and the Workforce Investment Act. TWC block grants, through allocation formulas, go to workforce development boards that plan and administer Workforce Investment Act, Choices, Employment Services, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Employment and Training, child care, and other workforce and support services.
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A Family Member Is Still Recovering From Covid But My Boss Told Me I Need To Return To Work If I Refuse Can I Still Get Unemployment Benefits
Yes. However, there are conditions you have to meet to remain eligible for unemployment benefits:
The family member must live with you
The family member must have tested positive for COVID-19 by a source authorized by the State of Texas
The family member must not yet have recovered and
14 days must not yet have passed.
How Much Will You Receive In Unemployment Benefits In Texas
The Texas Workforce Commission determines your benefit amount based on your earnings during the highest paid quarter of the base period. Your weekly benefit amount is your highest quarter earnings divided by 25, up to a current maximum amount of $535 per week. Learn more at the TWCs Eligibility and Benefit Amounts page.
Texas also has a maximum total amount of unemployment benefits: either 26 weeks’ worth of benefits, or 27% of your entire base period wages, whichever is less.
In times of very high unemployment, the state might make additional benefits available if you use up all of your regular benefits.
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Base Period: Calendar Quarters
Enter your total wage earnings for each of the four calendar quarters listed, which are the first four of the most recent five completed calendar quarters.
The quarter with the highest earnings will then be used to calculate your WBA.
If you were out of work for a long period during your base period because of a medically-verifiable illness, injury, disability, or pregnancy, you may be eligible to use an alternate base period.
How Long Can I Receive Benefits
Workers who qualify for benefits under Texas law can receive an initial 26 weeks of benefits. If they exhaust this, there are up to 26 extra weeks available. An additional 7 weeks of benefits may be available if the unemployment rate remains high. These will be available in October at the earliest.
On December 27, 2020, a new pandemic relief bill was signed into law. Under this legislation, unemployment benefits may be extended by up to 11 extra weeks.
Please note that these changes will still have to be put in place by the Texas Workforce Commission. The TWC has stated that it will try to do this as quickly as possible.
Please check here for the latest updates from the TWC regarding this:
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