How to file for Unemployment

You have tried to find work but it hasn’t come through for you yet. You have a family to feed and rent to pay and any income is better than none. You’ve tried to avoid it but it looks like you have to file for unemployment. Here is a step by step guide to get started.

Employment Eligibility

In order to receive unemployment compensation, workers must meet the unemployment eligibility requirements for wages earned or time worked during an established (one year) period of time. In addition, workers must be determined to be unemployed through no fault of their own. The following circumstances may disqualify you from collecting unemployment benefits, depending on the state you are living in:

  • Quit without good cause
  • Fired for misconduct
  • Resigned because of illness (depends on your disability benefits)
  • Left to get married
  • Self-employed
  • Involved in a labor dispute
  • Attending School

The Benefits

  • Regular benefits are paid for a maximum of 26 weeks in most states.
  • Additional weeks of benefits are be available during times of high unemployment.
  • In many states, the compensation will be half your earnings, up to a maximum amount.
  • Benefits are subject to Federal income taxes and must be reported on your Federal income tax return.
  • Up to 13 weeks of extended unemployment benefits, starting after the 26 weeks of standard benefits may be available to eligible unemployed workers during periods of high unemployment.
  • Check with your State Unemployment Office for information on what benefits you are entitled to.

If you know any tips that can help make the collection of unemployment benefits a little easier for people please let us know. If you have any specifics by state comment below.


2 responses to “How to file for Unemployment

  1. If you are receiving student loans or grants you can become ineligible for grants when you file for unemployment. Just a tip for all you students out there!

  2. Don’t be ashamed of being on unemployment. Everyone needs a little help sometimes. Anyway that money your getting back is really just what you pay into the system when you were working. I was on unemployment four months and it helped take care of me and my wife until I could find another job.

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