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Florida Unemployment Eligibility

The Florida Agency for Workforce Innovation is liable for managing the state’s unemployment insurance fund. As per the Florida Unemployment Compensation Law, an applicant’s eligibility depends on his work earnings history, his capability to keep seeking available work while collecting benefits and his reason for joblessness. Suitable claimants must file biweekly claims to keep on collecting unemployment benefits.

Monetary Eligibility

To establish a monetarily eligible reemployment assistance claim, a person must have worked and earned wages during a specified period of time called the base period (first four quarters of the previous five completed quarters prior to filing a claim).

To be eligible monetarily, a person must:

  • Have been paid wages in two or more calendar quarters in the base period;
  • Have total base period wages of at least 1-1/2 times the wages in the quarter having the highest earnings;
  • Have at least $3,400 total wages in the base period.

This calculation is automatically done at the time you file your claim.

Non-Monetary Eligibility

Once your claim is determined to be monetarily eligible and you have claimed weeks, your non-monetary eligibility must be determined before any benefits will be paid to you.

Below is a general description of the issues which can affect your claim:

  1. You were discharged (fired), you quit, or you are on a suspension or leave of absence from your last employer or other recent employers.
  2. You are a school employee and you are not working because you are between terms or on a vacation or holiday.
  3. You are unable or unavailable to work or to accept work or you are not looking for work or you have failed to report five contacts with prospective employers for work during a claim week..
  4. You are currently attending school or training.
  5. You are currently self-employed.
  6. You are obtaining payments of some kind from a recent employer.
  7. You refused a suitable job offer or you refused a referral from the One-Stop Career Center to a suitable job.
  8. You failed to participate in Reemployment Services scheduled at the One-Stop Career Center.
  9. You failed to complete the initial skills review on the Internet.

Eligibility Questions

I was fired from my last job. Will I be considered eligible?

In case you are fired for a reason like you were not good at the job or you did not have the skills to carry out the job, you must be able to receive benefits. But in Florida, employees who are fired for misconduct related to work may not be eligible for jobless benefits. Misconduct is defined as an intentional or controllable act (or failure to act) that shows a planned disregard of the employer’s interests. An employee who is fired for the following reasons will usually meet the criteria for benefits.

  • carelessness,
  • performance problems,
  • inefficiency or
  • good faith errors in judgement.

My employer is laying me off due to monetary crisis. Can I avail UC?

Usually, in Florida you have to have to have lost your job through no mistake of your own so as to collect unemployment. When you get jobless, it is not your fault. In nearly all cases, this means that if you get out of work, you are qualified to receive unemployment benefits. If you get laid-off from your job, you must instantly apply for unemployment benefits. Getting laid-off doesn’t mean that you were fired. Getting laid-off doesn’t mean that you did something incorrect. Getting laid-off means that the company you worked for did not have enough work for you to do, and could no longer afford to pay you for your job.

Will quitting a job affect my eligibility?

In case you quit your job, you won’t be entitled for unemployment unless you had a good reason for doing so related to your work or a personal illness or disability. In case you left your job because your spouse was transferred by the military, you will remain entitled for benefits. And if you left a temporary job since you were recalled by your permanent employing unit within 6 months after termination, you will qualify for benefits. Following causes may also be accepted by the law :

  • Cause attributable to the employer
  • Accept other work,
  • Relocate,
  • Care for a family member,
  • Distance to work,
  • Unhappy with the job

Want to know about how much you will receive?? —–>Calculate your benefits here

Questions & Answers

  1. renee says:

    my employer made a schedule Tuesday I took a picture of it wed I called him Thursday and he said oh yea by the way I switched the schedule I told him I made plans already and will not be in if he fires me for that can I collect

  2. Dany says:

    I was laid off the 5th of this month and was to receive a severance pay out on 6/1; my former employer paid it our earlier than stated on the signed separation letter. I read somewhere that there is a deadline in which you can file; for FL it’s advised that you file within the week; is there a definitive time frame in which you can file a claim in FL?

    • Martin says:

      You can file as soon as the severance pay period is over.

      Please call the Unemployment Office in your state for further information.

  3. Steffi says:

    I am an RN and was fired today after 6 1/2 years at this facility. Apparently one of the doctors heard me say I didn’t like working here and was looking for another job and took it to my boss. I was called into the office and told “this isn’t working out”. Can I collect until I find another job???

    • Martin says:

      Yes, you should be able to, as long as it was not your fault.

      Please call the Unemployment Office in your state for further information.

  4. Mia says:

    I gave my employer a resignation date of may 22..they decided to move it up and accept my resignation as of may 7th for reasons not told to me. Would I be eligible for unemployment?

    • Martin says:

      You will not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons.

      Please check further with the Unemployment Office in your state.

  5. Judith Echeverria says:

    My place of employment is closing They want to transfer me more than 10 miles away from my home. Do I have to accept?

  6. Lydia Vel says:


    I recently went on leave from work due to medical complications of my pregnancy for 5 days now. I gave birth today, and my daughter is currently in neonatal intensive care due to pre term labor. She is currently in the hospital as well as I am. I will be unable to return to work any time soon. Do you think I qualify?

    • Martin says:

      You will not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons. Pregnancy is not considered.

  7. Daniel Wolfe says:

    I want to file for unemplyement

    • Martin says:

      Please file over the phone or via the official website of the Unemployment Office in your state.

      Feel free to write back if you have any issues.

  8. Cindy says:

    Hello I transferred for the department of veteran affairs to a job in Tennessee, my husband worked for his bank for over 8 years and asked repeatedly to keep his job through telework which the company has offered in the past and my husband worked from home the previous year. They allowed him to continue working for one month after the move and then asked him to resign because their HR said he could not work from home. Although they do have a work from home program. Would he qualify for unemployment even if he resigned because they told him too. He has all the e-mails they sent him showing this was the case.

    • Martin says:

      If they forced him to resign an the separation from the job is involuntary, he can be eligible to file for UI benefits.

  9. Tim says:

    I was a self-employed truck driver for 15 years in which I quit because I could no longer be away from my family all the time (I have an 8-year old daughter). It was literally ruining my marriage and family. I moved to Florida to start another career and am having difficulty finding employment. I have many job applications out. Will I qualify for unemployment? Thank you.

  10. Sherri says:

    I received an offer from my former employer in PA in which I am planning on excepting and my husband has worked here in Fl since 11-2015. Prior to that he has worked in PA for the same company. He will have worked for them for 3 years. Which state should he file with PA or FL? If it is Florida would this be considered a qualifying event such as follow your spouse?

    • Martin says:

      If he voluntarily quit his job to relocate, he will not qualify.

      Otherwise, please file from the state where the last employment was based.

  11. jjjjjjjjohn says:

    I resigned from a job that I enjoyed and worked for 5 years,however a new supervisor was hired last year and was constantly writing me up for petty violations while ignoring others including his own.I could not take this anymore and told him so and he said leave if you want to,which I did. Am I eligibile for benefits.

    • Martin says:

      If you resigned voluntarily, you will not be eligible.

      If resigned due to hostile work environment, please apply and be ready with evidence supporting your decision if your employer disputes.

  12. Audrey says:

    I was the victim in a rear end car accident in May 2015. The accident broke my back and has left me unable to work. I had surgery in June 2105 and am going to have to have another one next month. I was employed at the time of the accident. I have a disability claim pending. Am I eligible for any type of unemployment benefits?

    • Martin says:

      You will not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons.

      If the injury was work related, please explore the Workers Comp scheme for benefits.

  13. Karyn says:

    I have two questions:
    1. How does severance pay and/or vacation pay affect my unemployment benefits?
    2. I plan on doing some substitute teaching while looking for a new job. I will work sporadically. How long after I apply for unemployment compensation am I eligible for benefits.

    • Martin says:

      Answers to your questions as below.

      1) You can only make a UI claim after the expiry of the severance pay package.
      2) If you remain jobless full time, you can claim and receive immediately.

  14. KIm says:

    I live in Fl but my employer is in MA, I have just been terminated, I believe my employer pays FL unemployment taxes, do I file for unemployment in FL or MA?

  15. stanley chaklos says:

    I have been working part time for the past 5 years, partially retired and collecting social security. I have recently been given less and less hours every month, and haven’t received any hours at all for the past month. My employer hired someone full time a few months ago and it seems like they no longer need me. They didn’t offer me a full time position when they hired this new guy. Am I entitled to unemployment benefits?

    • Martin says:

      If you lost the job due to involuntary reasons and continue looking for a job, you can qualify.

      Please inquire further with the labor authorities in your state.

  16. Rhonda Napier says:

    I work a 4 day 10 hour work week totaling 40 hours (full-time Hourly). During slow month’s, they force us to leave up to five hours a day, unpaid. Would I be able to claim unemployment for the hours lost each week due to company forcing me to leave?

  17. Jones says:

    We have had a business (family) for around 15 years. I have paid everything through my payroll company. I had to shut the doors due to sickness with my husband and a back injury (my son). We do not have the ability to perform the work due to sickness. I have no other recourse than to shut the doors. Can I receive benefits?

    • Martin says:

      Please inquire further with the labor authorities in your state.

      We do not have information in this regard.

  18. rita m dullea says:

    I am moving to florida in a couple of months. Will I be able to sign up for unemployment while seeking new employment?

  19. Kia says:

    I recently got into a car accident which left me with a foot injury, I went to the doctor and they told me I could work the next day, even though I could barely walk. My car was total lost which left me with no transportation for work, but luckily my mother helped me get a rental. After numerous absences due to that situation I was laid off. Am I still eligible for unemployment?

  20. Sharon says:

    I have several questions, please?
    I have been laid off from my job in Virginia and my last day will be June 30, 2016. Due to my lenghth of employment and amount of salary, I qualify to receive benefits for 26 weeks provided I meet all eligibility requirements. I plan to visit my family in Florida for a few months from July 1 through November, 2016, and would like to receive my unemployment benefits as well. My questions:
    1) Do I register my unemployment claim through Virginia, but manage the physical requirements of attending workshops, etc. through the Florida office?
    2) Do I seek jobs in Florida and abide by Florida requirements (e.g., biweekly reporting) or if I register in Virginia, do I need to comply with Virginia requirements?
    3) If I am still unemployed when I return to Virginia, say in December of 2016, could I then continue the same claim or would I need to (or be eligible to) begin a new claim to start benefits again?

    • Martin says:

      One answer to all your questions.
      You can only apply from VA and fulfill the requirements from there. What you can perhaps do is seek transfer of benefits to FL at a later date.

  21. Patti says:

    I was terminated from my job today. The reasons they gave me were inconsistency in sales, cleanliness, and guest service. Would I be eligible for unemployment?

  22. Stef says:

    I do historic restoration work so most of the work that I do is paid for by grants. In the middle of one of our projects, I received a higher paying job offer. When I put in notice, my boss offered to match it while on the Grant project if I would stay because I was the only one with experience. I agreed. After the project was over I was offered full time at a lower rate or part time at my current rate. I chose part-time only to find that he meant work when he had it, no work when he doesn’t. I worked full time hours until this month. Now less than 20 hours. Is there any kind of partial benefit program? If so, would I be ineligible due to my part-time status?

    • Martin says:

      One can be eligible for partial benefits if they do not work full time due to involuntary reasons such as reduction by the employer. Voluntarily choosing part time may not qualify.

      Please call the claims center/customer service of the labor dept. in your state for further information.

  23. Leslie says:

    I am currently employed by a hotel that will be closing. We have received a 60 day notice of the closing date. If I resign before the date given, would I still be eligible to draw unemployment?

  24. Joyce Cherry says:

    I am going out on FLMA. I will not have enough time while out of work. Can I apply for Unemployment benefits, while out of work. I could be out at least 6 to 8 weeks. Are there other options I can benefit from?

  25. Marie Sedwick says:

    I am being forced to resign to receive a severance package that eliminates my ability to seek employment within my field of experience. If forced to resign would I be eligible for Unemployment? I f I refuse will I be eligible?

    • Martin says:

      Yes, you can draw UI benefits if the job separation is due to involuntary reasons.

      If you refuse, you may not qualify.

  26. Keith Heller says:

    hours cut relocated to pa.

  27. Ina Stein says:

    I was working for a company in Orlando, Fl. I went to the emergency room as I was having an issue with my shoulder and was put into an immobilizing sling. I informed my employer of this and the next day went to my regular doctor who put me on restricted duty , clerical work only until medically released, but my employer has no clerical duties available as is it is bagel store, but I could still run a register. I sent my manager a copy of the form from my doctors notice of this and asked him what we needed to do. He never contacted me back but has now told my former coworkers that I quit. Which I did not! I simply informed him that I could not do the physical work required of me. Would I be eligible for unemployment benefits.

    • Martin says:

      Yes, you can be eligible to receive Unemployment Benefits for unfair termination.

      Please consider filing and keep the required supporting documents handy, if your employer disputes.

  28. Henry says:

    I was recently laid off due to my services no longer being needed. I worked with the company from Aug 2015 until Jan 18, 2016. Do I fall with in the base period and will I qualify for UI benefits?

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