Minnesota Unemployment Questions
What wages are used to establish a benefit account?
Your benefits are based on the amount of gross wages paid to you from all employers during a recent 52-week (one year) period of time. This is called your base period. Commissions, bonuses, overtime, vacation pay, severance pay (depending on timing), and wages earned in other states are included. Earnings from self-employment are not included.
Can wages earned in another state be used to establish a benefit account?
To establish a Minnesota unemployment benefit account using wages from another state, you must have at least some wages in your base period that were paid by a Minnesota employer. If you did not work in Minnesota during your base period and your employment was in another state(s) or U.S. territory(ies), you should contact the state in which you last worked to apply for unemployment benefits.
How does part-time work affect unemployment benefits?
If you work 32 or more hours in a week or if your gross earnings for a week equal or exceed your weekly benefit amount, you are not eligible for unemployment benefits for that week.
If you work less than 32 hours and earn less than your weekly benefit amount, you can receive a partial benefit payment. 55% of your part-time earnings in a week will reduce your benefits for that week dollar for dollar. Any money not paid to you due to a reduction stays in your account balance through the end of your benefit year.
Can wages earned in the military be used to establish a benefit account?
To use military wages to establish an account, you must:
be physically present in Minnesota to establish a Minnesota account; and,
have completed your first term of service and been discharged under honorable conditions.
If you did not complete your first term of service, your branch of service determines your eligibility for unemployment benefits based on the narrative reason for your discharge.
National Guard or Military Reserve wages can be used if earned in unbroken active duty for 90 days or more, with an honorable discharge.
How does social security retirement affect benefit payment?
If your Social Security claim was approved before the beginning date of your base period, your Social Security benefits will not affect your benefit payment.
If your Social Security claim was approved after the beginning date of your base period, your weekly unemployment benefits will be reduced by 50% of your weekly social security benefit amount.
Survivor's benefits will not affect your benefits.
What should I do if I was paid as an independent contractor or received a form 1099 instead of a W-2 form?
These are indications that your employer considered you self-employed and not covered by unemployment insurance. If you were indeed self-employed, those earnings cannot be used in computing your unemployment benefits. However, an employer is not the authority that determines whether you worked as a covered employee or as a self-employed individual.
If your employer said you were an independent contractor, but you believe your working relationship and responsibilities were those of an employee, or are not sure, complete the Wage and Employer Correction sheet included with your Determination of Benefit Account. Include a brief description of your job situation with this employer, along with a note regarding the type of work you did and how you were paid. A department auditor may contact you and the employer before the customer service specialist determines your status.
How do pension payments affect my unemployment benefits?
Pension payments from a fund your base period employer contributed to will reduce your unemployment benefits dollar for dollar; unless:
You have to pay a penalty for early withdrawal, or
You roll the pension into another retirement fund without taking a taxable payment.
Pension payments from a fund your base period employer did not contribute to will not reduce your unemployment benefits.
Can I receive unemployment benefits while working in self-employment?
You can be eligible for benefits for any week you meet all three of these requirements:
You worked less than 32 hours in any combination of employment and self-employment, and earned less than your weekly benefit amount.
You are also seeking a job as an employee, by making contacts with potential employers that week. Keep a record of your job contacts.
You are willing to rearrange or quit self-employment activity if it interferes with seeking or accepting employment under the normal conditions of your usual occupation.
What are Federal-State Extended Benefits (EB)?
Federal-State Extended Benefits (EB) are benefits available after you have exhausted your regular state unemployment benefits, or a tier of federal Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC). The Federal-State Extended Benefits program (EB) provides for up to 13 more weeks.