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Georgia Unemployment Eligibility

There are some qualification requirements to qualify for unemployment insurance in Georgia.

Non Monetary Eligibility

  • You must be unemployed through no fault of your own.
  • You must be able to work, be available for work, and be actively seeking work each week you claim benefits
  • You must be totally separated from your job
  • Fired without work-related misconduct
  • Quit for a good work-related reason

Monetary Eligibility

To establish a claim monetarily you must have:

  • “Insured” wages (those wages paid by employer who pay unemployment insurance tax) in at least two quarters of the base period (the first 4 of the last 5 calendar quarters completed at the time you file your claim)
  • “Insured” wages totaling at least $1,134 in the two highest quarters of your base period
  • Total base period wages of at least one and one-half times the amount of money you were paid in the highest quarter

Eligibility Questions

Can I receive unemployment if I am fired?

If you were fired from your job, you will not be able to collect benefits if your former employer can show that you were fired for failure to follow orders, rules, or instructions or for misconduct on the job. The only way to know certainly whether you are entitled if you are fired is to file a claim. The department cannot make a predetermination of eligibility before a claim is filed.

Can I draw benefits if I quit my job?

If you quit, you may be qualified to draw benefits if you can show that you quit for good work-connected reason(s).

Few good work-connected reasons are:

  • material change in working conditions,
  • material change in working agreement,
  • non payment for work, and similar reasons

You will not be able to obtain benefits if your reason for quitting was personal even though the personal reason was a good or compelling one. The only way to know certainly whether you are eligible if you quit is to file a claim. The department cannot make a predetermination of eligibility before a claim is filed.

 Can I collect unemployment if I am laid off?

Usually, in Georgia you have to lose your job through no fault of your own in order to collect unemployment. When you get laid-off, it is not your fault.

In about all cases, this means that if you get laid-off, you are eligible to collect unemployment benefits.

If you get laid-off from your job, you must directly apply for unemployment benefits.

Getting laid-off neither means that you were fired nor it means that you did something wrong. But actually it means that the company that you worked for did not have adequate work and could no longer afford to pay you for your job.

More question on eligibility answered in the Q & A Eligibility Section.

Next Step: Calculate Benefits

Questions & Answers

  1. Christopher says:

    I recently moved from Florida to GA because I was offered a job here and since I had accommodation in GA and no longer have accommodation in FL, I took the job offer. After moving here and ready to start job, I am now told that they had to freeze the position and the job is no longer available after I resigned my job in Florida. I also work at the previous job for 10 months for 29 hours a week which might be part time.

    Could I be eligible for draw unemployment and if so what documents do I need to show.

    • Martin says:

      You should be able to apply without any hassles.

      Please call the claims center for further information on the documentation front.

  2. William says:

    My company recently sold out to another company and the new company completely changed my job. I am in sales and they sent me to a week of training and my pay in now completely based on sales. The company has given me nothing to be able to do my job ie. no testing kits needed to test product, no brochures, no uniforms that are supposed to be supplied etc. If I quit because of these reasons and cannot make sales due to these can I receive unemployment? Also, I have gone to my boss numerous times inquiring about supplies and it has been weeks and still have not received any.

    • Martin says:

      Unfortunately, quitting voluntarily will go against you. You may not qualify.

      Please inquire further with the labor dept in your state.

  3. Nicholas says:

    I just want to know about something. I recently last Friday lost my job, it was nothing of my fault my manager got mad at me, it wasn’t my fault or misconduct. Am I still able to receive unemployment. I wasn’t offered my job back but I honestly don’t think I would go back I didn’t quit though.

    • Martin says:

      If it was not your fault and the exit was as per company policy, please consider applying for Unemployment Insurance until the time you find a job.

  4. Cynthia says:

    I have worked from april 2015 – September 2015, and my contract willnot be renewed, do I qualify for unemp benefits. Total taxable wages paid – 18,888

    • Martin says:

      Contract employees are generally not eligible. Please check further with the Unemployment Division of the labor dept in your state.

  5. Sharon Ratliff says:

    I moved to Georgia from Mississippi. I was offered a job as a teacher with a high school. When I got here, I was told that I was not able to take the position through no fault of my own. I signed up as a Substitute teacher but was only able to work one day during the last pay period because I was entered late into the system. My check for August 31st was 85.00. I worked as a teacher in Jackson. MS for eight years before moving here. Am I eligible for unemployment from MS?

    • Martin says:

      Please call the labor authorities in GA to check if you can apply from there.

      Generally, claimants apply from the state of last employment.

  6. Sandy says:

    I have worked part time for the same company for over three years. In May it was purchased by another company and after 3 months my hours were cut, now they are going to be cut again – from my original 24 to 10 hours, can I collect unemployment?

    • Martin says:

      Please inquire further with the labor authorities in your state and apply accordingly.

      Part time employment is generally not considered.

  7. Patty says:

    I worked for 5-6 years for the same company with no raises, loss of benefits, company struggling, so I found a new job. Almost 90 days into the job they decided this newly created position was working the way they wanted, and so terminated me yesterday with a letter saying it was no fault of mine. Can I apply for unemployment?

  8. Paige says:

    Hello, I was wondering if you qualify for unemployment if you worked for a company for almost 11 months full time plus many weeks of overtime,to find out that you are not able to file taxes with that company? There are no check stubs or anything but the person has all hours recorded on paper.
    Thanks, Paige

    • Adrian says:

      They consider 4 of the last 5 calender quarters worked. I suggest that you consider applying for benefits.

    • terry says:

      if person you worked for payed you CASH with no cheack stub tells me the put you down as tax write off at end of year sounds like you up the creek …. unless they willing to give you statement of your wages earned every quarter

  9. andy says:

    when will they start sending the check out again

    • Adrian says:

      Please provide more details on the application.The best thing you can do is to contact the claims center of the Labor department in your state for an accurate update on status.

  10. Sanja says:

    I am working part time 4-8 hours A week……earned less then $1000 (971$) since august 2013
    should i qualify for unemployement benefits or other kind of benefits?

  11. Rachel says:

    Can you get unemployment if you are on a general medical leave from your job?

  12. Walter Harmon says:

    As a practice my employer submits claims for employees whenever we qualfy for benifits. A claim has bee filed but I have not received any benifits or explaination for not being awarded the benifit.

    • Adrian says:

      Please check with your employer first.They would have access to “status” of your claim.If they have not received any update from the state labor department,you may with the consent of the employer, speak to the claims center directly for an update.

  13. Terry Langston says:

    I received the max 99 weeks unemployment benefits during 2009 thru 2011. I have been employed continuously since May 2011, but fear a lay off. Will I be eligible for benefits in 2014? I only make $27,500 per year. What wuold my benefits be?

  14. Debra Jenkins says:

    I recently quit my job because of co worker cussing and yelling at me. I had a prior situation with same co worker and went before manager and
    supervisor. They both drilled me with issues. I was unable to express my side of story. I id not want to go thru that again so I quit. Might I receive benefits.

  15. courtney says:

    Hello, I was recently released from my job due to the fmla procedure not being followed. I was told by my supervisor that my information was fine and there were no issues. 6 months later she advised me that the information was not correct and could not be used, thus leading to attendance impacts. Will I be eligible for unemployment? Also, I am going to start a Mary Kay Cosmetics business, would that be considered self employment from the date I sign up or until I get things started?

  16. Robert Olson says:

    Hello, I am a Georgia resident, but have been working overseas for about13 years as a contractor with department of state. I have just been informed that my contract will not be renewed when it expires in December. Can you tell me if I would be eligible for unemployment insurance? Thank you, bob olson

    • kathy says:

      Often when someone is a contractor, they are self employed and probably not covered for unemployment insurance. However, the term contractor is sometimes used “incorrectly” – the ‘department of state’ should be able to tell you if any unemployment taxes were paid on your behalf.

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