Only 15 Percent Of Callers Get Through
But if youre still the one waiting to get paid, you might feel a little crazy. In just two weeks, 11Alive received nearly 200 emails from viewers struggling with their claims. Most stem around the inability to get in touch with someone at DOL to answer their questions or clarify what they feel is a mistake in their claim.
The Commissioner admits, only about 15 percent of the people who call, get through to someone who can help.
Thats what happens when Congress puts 85 percent of the responsibility of financial relief on a department theyve been underfunding for 10 years, the Commissioner said.
Butler claims its Congress that cast this shadow, approving complicated federal unemployment programs with no state systems in place to make the payments. Then it was Congress that allowed benefits to run out, without approving funding to back pay those who stopped receiving checks in the fall.
They only said if youre still unemployed come January, well start paying you then, he explained.
And now, Butler said 80 percent of the claims coming into his office are from people who quit or were fired. People who dont traditionally qualify for unemployment but believe federal programs can still help.
Theres been a lot of false information thats been put out, Butler said.
Unemployment When Laid Off
In Georgia, you are eligible for unemployment benefits if your earnings meet certain minimum thresholds in terms of hours or wages and if you were laid off, quit for good cause, or were fired for anything other than misconduct.
You can meet the unemployment requirements if you were laid off from your job, lost your job in a reduction-in-force , or got downsized for economic reasons. Layoffs mean that your job or role is terminated, but not at your own fault.
According to Vanderbilts Human Resources, a reduction in force is defined as a separation from employment due to lack of funds, lack of work, redesign or elimination of position or reorganization, with no likelihood or expectation that the employee will be recalled because the position itself is eliminated.
How Long Can I Collect Unemployment Benefits
In Georgia, the maximum number of weeks you can receive benefits is determined by the states seasonal adjusted unemployment rate at the time your claim is filed. It ranges between 14 and 20 weeks. However, the CARES Act extends that period by 13 weeks, allowing you to collect unemployment benefits for up to 39 weeks.
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File Partial Unemployment Insurance Claims
Partial unemployment insurance claims may be filed by employers for full-time employees who work less than full-time during a pay period due to lack of work only. The employees must still be attached to the employer and must have earned wages that do not exceed the weekly benefit amount plus $50.00.
- Partial Claims should not be filed when an employee is out of work due to disability, workers compensation or medical leave.
- Partial Claims should not be filed when an employee is not able and available to accept all work offered by the employer.
Partial claims may be filed via the Internet, on tape or diskette, or by mail. Filing Internet claims requires the employer to access the Employer Portal. Filing partial claims electronically via the Internet results in faster payment. Paper filed partial claims require manual review and processing therefore, payments may be significantly delayed during peak periods.
The Georgia Department of Labor Employer Portal provides self-service options with a single sign-on for UI services. UI tax-related and partial claims filing services will now be accessible only by registering and using the Portal.
- Partial Claims Filing for Employers
- Maintain and change employer address
- Reset password
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How Do I Apply For Unemployment Benefits
Georgia allows employers to file a partial claim on behalf of employees. If your employer does this, you do not need to apply for benefits.
However, if your employer doesnt file your claim, you will need to complete the process yourself. You can file online as long as you have a valid email address and have earned wages in Georgia over the past two years.
To file, you will need:
- Your Social Security number
- Your Georgia drivers license
- A bank account number and bank routing number if you want to get your unemployment payments via direct deposit
- Your work history over the past 18 months
You can visit the Georgia Department of Labors application for unemployment benefits and answer the questions provided. Youll receive a confirmation number, which you should record. And youll need to request your weekly benefit each week starting on the first Sunday after your claim has been filed.
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Is Georgia Extending Pua Unemployment
The Georgia Department of Labor has stated that persons who have been laid off as a result of the COVID-19 restructuring will be eligible for prolonged unemployment benefits. The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021 will include the Continued Assistance for Unemployed Workers Act of 2020, which will take effect in 2020.
Complete The Online Application
To find out if youre eligible to receive EI regular benefits, you must submit an application online. The online application takes about 1 hour to complete.
If you donÃÂ¢t complete the application all at once, you can come back to it later using the temporary password that you receive when you start.
Your information is saved for 72 hours from the time you start. If you donÃÂ¢t submit the application within this time:
- it will be deleted, and
- youÃÂ¢ll have to start a new application
When you apply for EI benefits, youll be asked for your email address. If we need more information about your claim and cant reach you by phone, well send you a toll-free number in an email, asking you to call us.
If you started a new EI claim within the last 52 weeks and there are still weeks payable on that claim, well automatically reactivate your existing claim when you submit your application.
In some cases, it may be to your advantage to cancel or end your old claim and start a new claim, because this may increase the amount of your benefits or the length of your benefit period.
It is important to consider:
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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.
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 still 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. However, if you engaged in “misconduct,” you will not be eligible to receive unemployment. In Georgia, among other things, misconduct means an intentional violation of the employer’s rules, the failure to conform to standards which an employer can reasonably expect from an employee, or careless behavior that is so frequent or severe that it shows a disregard for the employer’s interests. For example, showing up to work under the influence of alcohol or drugs or having several unexcused absences after written warning would typically qualify as misconduct.
Collecting Unemployment After Quitting
Talk To Your Employer
If you have been furloughed due to the COVID-19 crisis, its important that you speak with your employer about your options. Many businesses have received loans or grants that may allow them to offer at least partial paychecks to their employees.
For those businesses who cannot do this, they can still take steps to ensure that your unemployment application process goes more smoothly. Speak to HR before you get started.
Its important to note that if your employer is filling out the unemployment forms for you because you were let go/have reduced hours due to COVID-19, you do not need to fill out the application form. Your employer will tell you if this is the case.
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Affidavit To Verify Lawful Presence In The Us
Georgia law requires that all applicants for UI benefits who are 18 years of age or older attest they are:
- a United States citizen, or
- a legal permanent resident, or
- a non-citizen legally present in the United States.
The GDOL performs electronic verification of your lawful presence in the United States with the Georgia Department of Driver Services . The DDS validates the identity of individuals who indicate they have a Georgia-issued drivers license or identification card.If completion of the affidavit is required, you must present valid government-issued picture identification to a GDOL representative to complete the affidavit and have it notarized. If you are not a citizen of the United States, you must also present acceptable, unexpired employment authorization document. The GDOL will verify your registration status with the U. S. Department of Homeland Security. You cannot receive benefit payments until your lawful presence in the U.S. is verified.
When filing a claim, you should have:
Use the GDOL automated telephone system, OLIVoR, to access additional information.
Eligibility Requirements For Georgia Unemployment Benefits
In Georgia, the Department of Labor handles unemployment benefits and determines eligibility on a case-by-case basis. Applicants must meet the following three eligibility requirements in order to collect unemployment benefits in Georgia:
- Your past earnings must meet certain minimum thresholds.
- You must be unemployed through no fault of your own, as defined by Georgia law.
- You must be able and available to work, and you must be actively seeking employment.
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Before You File For Unemployment
Have this important information ready as you prepare to file for unemployment.
Reopen a Claim
If you had an active claim and stopped certifying for continued benefits, you can reopen an unemployment insurance claim if it was filed within the last 52 weeks and you have not exhausted your benefits.
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Trusted Referee Video Call
If you are not able to complete the verification process due to an issue with your documentation, you will be routed to verify your identity over a video call with an ID.me Trusted Referee. Wait times may vary. You will need to show your identity documents to a Trusted Referee along with a selfie to complete your verification.
After you’ve completed your verification with a Trusted Referee, follow the steps below to continue with your claim:
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What To Know About Filing For Unemployment In Georgia And The Cares Act
The coronavirus relief package was approved March 27, and Georgians are now starting to receive its benefits.
With the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, unemployment payment amounts will increase, more workers will qualify, and benefits will be available for a longer amount of time.
A few weeks ago, the Georgia Department of Labor began sending out the additional $600 weekly payments from the CARES Act, according to an The department has been told that they will be able to backdate any payments for eligible weeks beginning March 29.
Those who previously couldnt apply for unemployment benefits have new guidance from GDOL on how they can begin to start receiving benefits through Pandemic Unemployment Assistance.
Since late March, GDOL has been updating its COVID-19 information page with instructions about unemployment benefits. The department has been using instructions provided by the U.S. Department of Labor for implementation procedures.
Heres what to know about Georgias unemployment benefits process from filing to the amount of payment and what to expect with the rollout of CARES.
Until the CARES Act comes into effect in Georgia, just those who have been receiving W-2s from their employer qualify for unemployment benefits.
Those who are self-employed will be able to file for unemployment benefits once they approved by GDOL and the Georgia Department of Revenue.
How To Apply?
More about the processes for receiving PUA is online.
Can I Appeal If My Claim Is Denied
If your claim is denied, or if you disagree with the number of weeks or amount of weekly benefits that has been decided, you can challenge the decision within 15 days of the mailing date of your determination letter. You will need to state the determination you disagree with , along with an explanation of your reason for appealing, your Social Security number, full name, and contact information.
Within 3 weeks of receiving your appeal, the GDOL will advise you of the date and time of your hearing, along with who the hearing officer will be. Unless you specifically request an in-person hearing, all appeals are heard over the phone. If after the initial hearing you still do not agree with the decision, you may file a further appeal with the Board of Review. Until a final and definitive outcome is reached, continue to file your weekly claims to avoid any subsequent problems in payments.
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How Much Will I Get
To calculate the quantity of your unemployment benefits, GDOL take the total wage from the two highest-earning quarters of the base period and divide it by 42. This is your weekly benefits entitlement. If you want to get an estimate of your likely entitlement, you may want to check the online unemployment calculator at Fileunemployment.org. Since the introduction of the CARES Act on March 27, unemployment applicants have entitlement to claim a supplementary $600 flat payment per week until the end of July. If you are already in receipt of benefits, no action is required. GDOL will review your eligibility based on the information already provided, and issue any due amounts, retroactive to March 29, separately for your usual state benefits payments.
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:
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How Can I Get Through To Unemployment
The EDD phone numbers, 1-833-978-2511 or 1-800-300-5616, go to the same center. They operate from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. PDT. Best times to call seem to be around 10:15 a.m. or between 6 or 7 p.m. To reach an EDD representative about an existing claim, try pressing 1 during the first recording, then press 2, then press 4.
You Will Receive Monetary Determination
After your application has been reviewed, your states unemployment agency will send you an Unemployment Insurance Monetary Determination letter.
This is a letter that tells you how much youll potentially receive in unemployment benefits.
The letter will include:
- The amount of wages reported by each employer
- Your weekly benefit amount
- Your total benefit amount
The information in the letter will show whether you have earned enough wages to establish an unemployment claim.
However, if you believe that wages on your Determination Letter are incorrect or missing information, contact your states unemployment agency for assistance.
You will be asked to provide proof of the correct wages in order to review your claim.
It is important to note that a monetary determination letter does not mean you will receive unemployment benefits.
Additional information may be needed from you and/or your employer to make sure you are eligible.
However, you must continue to file your weekly claim for payment while your claim is being investigated.
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Unemployment Credits: Is The Insurance Company Following The Rules
Georgias Workers Compensation Act states an employer is entitled to a credit for the unemployment benefits paid to an injured worker if they timely file the correct form with the State Board of Workers Compensation . If the employer files this form properly, the employee will only be entitled to the difference between what they received in unemployment benefits and what they are granted in workers compensation benefits.
Lets look at an example:
Bill receives unemployment benefits of $300 per week while fighting to receive his workers compensation benefits of $400 per week. Bill wins his workers compensation case at the rate of $400 per week. If Bills employer properly filed a WC-243 form, then Bills employer will only owe him $100 per week for the weeks Bill drew unemployment benefits.
To be able to take this credit, however, the injured workers employer must correctly complete and file a WC-243 form with the State Board of Workers Compensation within 10 days before the workers compensation hearing. The employer also has to send a copy of the form to the injured workers attorney, or the injured worker if he/she is unrepresented.
In practice, some employers fail to file the correct form in time with the State Board. Even if filed, they may make errors completing the form, or fail to serve a copy to the employee and/or the employees attorney.
What Happens Once I File My Claim
Once you submit your claim, the GDOL will review your eligibility and inform you of their decision via a determination letter within 3 4 weeks. If any additional information is requested as part of the review process, its imperative to supply this as soon as possible to avoid any unnecessary delays or problems with your claim. Your first payment will be made within 3-4 days of the determination letter being sent. Even while a decision is still pending, its vital you verify your claim weekly. If you forget, you wont be entitled to payment for any missed weeks. To file your weekly benefits claims, visit the GDOL website or contact them directly on 1-866-598-4164.
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