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How To Answer Unemployment Questions

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Understanding The Certification Questions

Answering top 4 questions about unemployment benefits

By certifying, you are declaring by law that you meet the eligibility requirements to be paid unemployment benefits.

The fastest way to certify is in UI OnlineSM. You can certify while in school or training, to report work and earnings, and when updating your contact information. You can also certify by phone using EDD Tele-CertSM.

Avoid payment delays! Your claim can be delayed if you answer questions incorrectly. Review the following for help answering the certification questions. You can also view Unemployment Benefit Certification Question Information .

How Do I Answer My Unemployment Weekly Certification Questions

Common Unemployment Claims Questions and Answers. Week 1 – Mary is laid off on the 1st and applies for unemployment benefits that day. Week 2 – She files her first weekly claim on the 7th for the week that ended on the 6th.

Answers to Questions about Weekly Unemployment Filing a Weekly Claim Certification: You will need to answer several questions about the week you are claiming, such as: the reason you are no longer working if you are currently unemployed or…

Are You A Business Owner Looking For Assistance

The can help keep employees attached to your workplace by allowing an employer to temporarily reduce work hours rather than resorting to layoffs. You can reach the Shared-Work team at .

However, if you are a business that has had to close either temporarily, consider layoffs, or is financially at-risk for permanent closure the Rapid Response Assistance Program is available to assist you with a variety of services and resources to help you and your employees. You can reach the Rapid Response team via email at .

Additional resources for businesses are available through the PA Department of Community and Economic Development.

If you earn your primary income from working in your own business or farm, you may be eligible for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance , which was created as part of the federal CARES Act that became law on March 27, 2020. The Department will provide information about how to apply for PUA on our website as soon as it becomes available.

PUA is a separate program from regular UC. Small business owners and self-employed individuals are not eligible for regular UC.

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Question : Were You Attending School Or Job Training

If you are a student and just filed this unemployment claim as a result of the coronavirus emergency, and the Division of Unemployment Insurance has not reviewed your school status, please answer NO to this question at this time.

If you are a student who filed an Unemployment Insurance claim prior to this emergency, and have already provided the department with your school information, and your school is currently closed due to the coronavirus, please answer this question in the same manner you would have prior to the school closing.

If Youre Unemployed Read This: Dol Releases How

Division of Unemployment Insurance

The New Jersey Department of Labor & Workforce Development in an effort to help speed claims through the system gave input Wednesday on how to answer the seven qualifying questions that are required by the federal government to ask claimants each week.

The certification questions have proven an obstacle for tens of thousands of filers per week because of their work situation. For example, a worker who expects to be recalled to their job after COVID-19 should nonetheless answer yes to the question Were you actively seeking work?

Answering the certifying questions incorrectly will delay payment of benefits.

Thats why the Labor Department has created a how-to guide to walk claimants through the questions. The how-to guide will pop up whenever claimants certify for weekly benefits online. It also is available on the departments website.

The certification questions and interpretations are as follows:

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Preparing For Your Interview

In many cases, the letter or email you receive from the unemployment division will inform you of the reasons for the interview. If the interview is because they need to clarify information on your application, its likely that the initial letter will outline the information required. For instance, the interviewer may have questions about why you waited to file for unemployment after leaving a job. The questions may also be related to clerical errors, such as leaving off a date or other incorrect details. Other questions to expect may have to do with the time leading up to your dismissal, such as: What actions did you take to resolve problems? Did you receive any warnings? What specifically led to your termination?

For this reason, make a copy of your unemployment application for your records so that you can refer to the document you submitted as you answer the questions. Before your interview, you might want to jot down some notes about your employment history, including the names of employers, dates of employment, actions you took to avoid being fired, what led up to the firing. That way, when the interviewer asks questions, you wont be flustered or inadvertently provide inaccurate information.

I Have A Different Issue That Hasnt Been Answered Already

31. I need to reopen my claim. How do I do it?

If your benefit year has expired or it has been more than 30 days since the last time you certified benefits, you may need to open a new claim for benefits. You can reopen an unemployment claim online, by phone, or by mail. Reopening a claim is a shorter process than the original application for UI benefits.

32. I received more benefits than I was eligible for. Do I need to pay them back?

Yes. If you received unemployment benefits you were not eligible for , EDD will send you a notice. It is important to repay this benefit overpayment as soon as possible to avoid collection and legal action. You can visit Benefit Overpayment Services to learn how to repay an existing overpayment.

Or, if you disagree with EDDs decision that you were overpaid, you can appeal the overpayment .

If you want to repay any overpaid benefits before receiving a notice, review the following:

  • Benefit check not cashed Return the original check to the EDD.
  • Benefit check cashed Send a personal check, cashiers check, or money order made payable to the EDD.
  • EDD Debit Card If the funds are still on your card, transfer them to your bank account and then repay them by sending a personal check, cashiers check, or money order made payable to the EDD.

Include a letter with the following information:

Mail the payment and letter to:

Employment Development Department Overpayment Center

PO Box 66000

Anaheim, CA 92806

  • Full name.

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Im In The Process Of Applying For Unemployment Insurance

7. How much could I receive in benefits?

Calculating how much you will receive each week on unemployment is complicated, and depends on your prior earnings and how much you worked during any given week while eligible for benefits. Benefits, before deductions for earnings in a given week, range from $40 to $450 a week. The amount you receive each week in benefits will be your Weekly Benefit Award, which is based on how much you earned during the highest quarter during your base period, which is a year-long period during the last 15-18 months.

Use this calculator to estimate what your weekly UI benefit amount could be, or visit this link for a thorough explanation on how UI benefits are calculated. See Question 22 for more information on how earnings you make while receiving UI benefits are deducted from your weekly benefit amount.

8. When should I apply for unemployment insurance?

You should file your claim as soon as you are out of work or have your hours reduced. Your claim will begin on the Sunday of the week you applied for unemployment. However, you can request to backdate your claim date to the week you became unemployed due to COVID-19. See Question 23 for more information on how to backdate your claim.

9. What documents do I need to apply?

Identity Documents

  • Two primary documents, or
  • One primary and two secondary documents

Employment History

Unemployment Insurance Information

11. How do I answer the provide wages earned by employer question in section 3?

Unemployment Benefits Extended 13 Weeks:

Answering your unemployment questions

Pennsylvanians who have an expired Unemployment Compensation claim or have exhausted their benefits under an existing claim can receive an additional 13 weeks of benefits through the new Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation program.

Under the new program, if an individual has an open claim and exhausts their benefits, the additional 13 weeks will be automatically added to their existing claim. If a claimants benefits have expired, they must submit an application for the extended benefit online or mail a paper application.

Benefits will be available retroactive to the benefit week ending April 4. The extended benefits will be available through December 26 for claimants who have exhausted regular benefits.

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What If The Person I Talk To Can’t Answer My Question

Even once you reach someone in the unemployment office, it’s possible they will not have the answers to the questions you are asking. Don’t give up.

If you can’t get the answer you want, Shahrzad Arasteh, the founder of Career Consulting Services, recommends asking to speak with a supervisor or someone who reviews cases. If the supervisor is not there, leave your number and ask that they call you back. If you don’t hear from them in a day or two, call the unemployment office again. It may also be a good idea to ask an employee there when the supervisor will be in next so you can wait or call back at a better time.

If you still can’t get the answers you’re looking for, Arasteh suggests getting in touch with someone at your state’s department of labor, explaining your issue, and asking for help.

The unemployment benefits claims process can be frustrating at a time when more frustration is the last thing you need in your life. But patience and persistence will pay offliterally.

Question : Did You Refuse Any Work

If you refused an offer of work due to concerns related to the travel/stay-at-home restrictions of the coronavirus pandemic, or because you were ill with coronavirus or because you wouldnt be able to care for a coronavirus-affected family member or care for a dependent whose place of care or school is closed because of coronavirus, you should answer NO.

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Unemployment Insurance Frequently Asked Questions

Use this list of Frequently Asked Questions for answers to common unemployment insurance questions. Don’t see your question or answer? Please call UI Customer Service at 1-866-239-0843 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Filing for Unemployment Benefits

Q) When should I file an application for benefits?

A) File an initial claim the same week you are unemployed or working reduced hours. Do not wait until you have returned to work to file your claim. Your unemployment insurance claim DOES NOT begin on the date your job ended or your hours were reduced. Your claim is effective the Sunday of the week you apply.

Q) How do I apply for benefits?

A)You will first create a user name and password on the Unemployment Benefits Online Application System and then complete the application. It is recommended you complete the application on a computer rather than on your phone because of the amount of information required. If you do not have access to a computer, you may use computers at any IowaWORKS location or at your local library. See Steps & Responsibilities in the online handbook section. If you need assistance or your claim involves military, federal, or out-of-state wages, call UI Customer Service at 1-866-239-0843 between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Q) What information do I need when I apply?

Q) What happens after I submit my application for unemployment benefits?

Q) How can I reopen my unemployment claim?

Q) Why do I need to register for work?

Be Concise When Speaking About Your Unemployment

Questions about Weekly Ohio Unemployment Claims : Columbus

While you should be honest about your unemployment, you shouldnât divulge too many details.

âThe interviewer is less likely to have further questions when you provide a specific reason for explaining your transition,â says Niedzwiecka. For example, you can explain that you enjoyed working for the company and received positive feedback, but you were ultimately let go after a company restructure, she says. Just âlimit yourself to one or two sentences,â Niedzwiecka says.

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Can My Employer Require Me To Use My Vacation Time

I work in accounts payable. During the last three weeks my hours have started to dwindle, and I am now only working three days a week. I have been using my personal/vacation time to compensate for the loss. My employer received the PPP. Do I have to keep using my personal time to cover lost hours?

Answer from Nick Oberheiden, Attorney & Founder of Oberheiden, P.C.:

If you are able to work and you choose not to do so, then your employer can require you to utilize vacation time that you have accruedand your employer can place limitations on the use of vacation time that apply generally to all employees .

With regard to the PPP and unemployment specifically, there are really two separate issues: If you are eligible for unemployment benefits, even temporarily, then you can file for and receive unemployment. If you are not eligible for unemployment because you are still employed and available to work , then your employer can require you to either work or take vacation time.

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Was There Any Reason That You Could Not Have Accepted Full

A No Answer

Answer No if you were ready and willing to accept work in your field that matches your job skills and background, even if your past employer is now closed.

A Yes Answer

Answer Yes if you could not immediately accept work for reasons other than the COVID-19 pandemic. If you answer Yes, you may be scheduled for an eligibility interview to get more information, which could delay your payment.


Unemployment benefits are paid if you are available to accept full-time work. In some situations, you can work part time and still be paid benefits. If so, you will receive more information.

Starting July 11, 2021, most people will be expected to search for work to maintain their eligibility for unemployment benefits.

A Yes Answer

Answer Yes if you made a reasonable effort to look for suitable work this week. Looking for work includes:

Union members: Answer Yes if you are registered with your union and meet their reporting and dispatch requirements.

Note: If youre receiving Pandemic Unemployment Assistance , there are many work search activities that meet the requirement to allow you to answer Yes.

A No Answer

Answer No if you did not participate in any of the activities listed above or you did not make any efforts to look for suitable work this week.

Union members: Answer No to this question if you are not registered with your union or are not meeting their reporting and dispatch requirements.

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Can My Employer Force Me To Come Into The Workplace Because They Are Paying Us After Obtaining Ppp

Im a dental assistant and our office has been shut down except for emergencies. My employer is approved for a PPP loan. This means all of the employees will go off unemployment and she will pay us. Can the dentist make us work in the office if it is non-essential or to do menial jobs?

Answer from Ian Meklinsky:

This is a common question we are receiving from employers and employees. An employer who receives a PPP loan, if it wants the loan forgiven, has eight weeks to spend it on otherwise eligible expenses. As a result, many employers are having employees either return to work or are having employees not work and paying them nonetheless. This is permitted. The failure of employers to do this will result in their PPP loan not being fully forgiven.

I understand the concern of employees here, as some may be earning more on unemployment compensationas a result of the federal unemployment insurance supplementbut employers have the right to compel employees back to work.

What Happens To Workers Who Are Brought Back At Reduced Pay

Answering your unemployment questions part 3

Im currently on unemployment and my employer got approved for the PPP loan. He stated when the funds come in I can no longer collect unemployment and told me that I will be working 20 hours a week instead of 40 hours a week. Im a server. I will not be making enough to get by. Will I still be eligible for unemployment?

Answer by Travis Hockaday, Attorney at Smith Anderson:

Workers who are working reduced hours as a direct result of COVID-19 may be eligible for unemployment benefits, and should apply if they believe that they may qualify. For instance, in North Carolina, an employee working reduced hours because of a COVID-19-related reason may still be eligible. However, according to the North Carolina Division of Employment Security, the amount of money that these employees earn while working their reduced hours could affect their weekly benefit amounts. They can earn up to 20% of their weekly benefit amount without the earnings counting against their weekly benefits earnings over that amount are deducted from the weekly benefits. These workers must report the money they are earning on their weekly certification reports for unemployment benefits.

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Questions About Getting Fired

If you are fired from your job, the unemployment agency will examine whether you were terminated because of misconduct or because of other factors. These other factors may include poor performance or not having the necessary skills to adequately perform the job. In many states, misconduct is defined narrowly, and is restricted to egregious behavior such as theft, violence in the workplace, flagrant disregard of safety policies or repeated violation of workplace rules over time.

If your discharge was because of an accusation of misconduct, you might need to answer a series of questions about the incident or incidences. The interviewer needs to ask these questions to determine whether or not your behavior meets the threshold of misconduct, or whether your dismissal was because of a performance issue that was mostly out of your control.


Interviewer: Why were you fired from your job?

You: I was promoted to the sales job six months ago. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, I was never able to meet the monthly goals. Although I had hoped to be able to return to my previous position — which did not involve sales — that department had reductions and no openings were available for me.

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