Alabama Unemployment Benefit Questions

Alabama Unemployment

Here are some common questions about Alabama unemployment benefits.

How much is Alabama unemployment?

Benefits per week range from a minimum of $45 to a maximum of $275 and are calculated based on your base period earnings. Estimate your weekly benefit amount using the Alabama unemployment calculator.

How do I file for unemployment in Alabama?

You can choose to file online, or you can use the automated voice system and file over the phone. Learn how to apply for Alabama unemployment benefits.

What information do I need to file a claim?

You will need your Social Security number, the name and address of your most recent employer, and the dates of your employment. Additionally, a driver’s license or state-issued ID card number will be needed for identity verification.

If you are not a U.S. citizen, your work authorization number must be provided.

When should I apply for Alabama unemployment benefits?

You should file immediately after becoming unemployed. Your claim will be effective the Sunday preceding the day you file for benefits, and your claim will be effective for 365 days.

Who is eligible for Alabama unemployment?

To be eligible for unemployment benefits in Alabama, you must have lost your job through no fault of your own and meet the state’s work and wage requirements. Specifically, you must have earned enough wages during your “base period” and meet ongoing eligibility criteria, including the Alabama work search requirements. You must also accept any suitable job offer. Certain circumstances like quitting your job voluntarily or being terminated for misconduct may disqualify you from receiving benefits.

Does Alabama unemployment have a waiting week?

Yes, Alabama unemployment has a waiting week. This means that you will not receive benefits for the first week that you are unemployed, even if you are otherwise eligible. The waiting week is the first payable week on your claim, and it is required by law. You must still file a weekly certification during your waiting week, but you will not receive a benefit payment for that week.

Can I receive benefits if I am self-employed or an independent contractor?

No. During the COVID pandemic, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) assisted self-employed workers, but those extended benefits are no longer available. All extended benefits established by the CARES Act expired in 2021.

How long will it take to receive my first payment?

Once your claim is processed, you should receive your first payment within two to three weeks. However, this timeframe can vary if there are issues during the claims process. If you file an appeal, you should continue to file your weekly certifications while you wait for a decision.

How long does Alabama unemployment last?

The number of weeks you can receive benefits depends on your base period earnings and the unemployment rate in Alabama. Generally, you will qualify for a set number of full benefit weeks ranging from 14-20 weeks.

The maximum amount allowable for the benefit year is based on the unemployment rate. If you return to work or if you have deductible income for any week, you may draw reduced payments and increase the total possible length of time that you can draw. The total amount that you can draw for the year is the maximum benefit amount shown on your monetary determination.

Can I file an appeal if my claim is denied?

Yes. If your claim for benefits is denied, you have the right to file an appeal. You must file your appeal in writing within 15 calendar days from the date of the notice of the determination. You can file your appeal online, by mail, or by fax. During the appeal process, you may be asked to provide additional information or attend a hearing. It is important to follow all instructions provided by the appeals process to ensure that your case is heard and decided fairly.

What are the Alabama unemployment monetary eligibility requirements?

You must have earned wages in at least two quarters of your base period, which is the first four quarters (12 months) of the last five completed quarters from the date of your claim. The total of your base period earnings must be equal to or exceed one and a half times your highest quarter earnings.

Can I receive benefits if I quit my job?

Generally, you must meet certain requirements to be eligible, including being able and available to work, actively seeking full-time work, and being out of work due to no fault of your own. If you voluntarily quit your job, you must provide proof of a good work-connected reason. If you are terminated or discharged, your employer must provide proof of a work-connected cause according to Alabama law.

Can I work part time and still receive unemployment benefits?

It depends on how much you earn. If you earn less than your weekly benefit amount, you can receive a reduced payment for the benefit week.

  1. I am in the Army Reserve in the state of Alabama. I have been deployed for 12 months. When I get home I will be going to college. But do not have a job lined up to come back home. Am I eligible for Unemployment benefits?

    • Hayden,

      You can contact the local Unemployment Office for details. If you’re schooling full-time, it hampers your time to work a full-time job, making you ineligible.

      • My tracker says , account being reviewed we will notify you ONLY if we need additional information. Then below says pending issue halt for two weeks now on the benefit part. I called and without the lady knowing any of my personal info ,all I did was read to her what it said and she told me I had to verify my identity. Well that took a few days to even get a hold of anyone. I never received a letter or anything my benefits just stopped last week ,even though I have been getting them since may 2020. I sent in my identity info like she said through last week and faxed them as well. Im just wondering if thats what it truly is just my identity needs to be verified? This has got me so sick ,2 weeks of no payment this is the only way I’m surviving right now. Is anyone else going through this? Is this a normal process ? And if it is identity how long does that take?

        • Carrie,

          I am guessing you’re a victim of endless paperwork. Please be patient and continue following up at regular intervals.

  2. I am 67 and started receiving Social Security this year to help pay off bills, but I remained employed for a local bank. I was notified that my employer was cutting some positions, and mine was one. Would I qualify for unemployment under these circumstances? I am looking for another job since I can’t live on SS alone.

    • Dot,

      You might be eligible if the retirement age in your state permits the application. You may contact the Unemployment Office for assistance.

  3. If you certainly drawing unemployment your job just recently called you back and you suppose to start back on the feb.25 Monday but they biweekly so their pay day was today feb 21(thrusday)do you still file since you not getting paid for two weeks

    • ASH,

      You should be able to continue receiving until your first paycheck. I suggest you get this clarified by calling the Claims Center.

  4. I have been filing for 3 weeks straight and i found a job and work 1 day out the week. My question is while wainting on a aprovable can you still work for less than your check would be a week and still get aproved

  5. We worked in Florida and have come back home to Alabama can we file our unemployment through Alabama or do we file in Florida?

    • Nesha,

      It simply means that the claim you made has been accepted. It’s being processed further. Please call the Claims Center for details.

    • Shay,

      Unless they explicitly express through written communication, please do not assume it was denied. Please call the Claims Center for an update on claim status.

  6. Since nobody seems to be answering this 800 number for answers to questions (800-361-4524), can someone direct me to somebody that I can talk to? I’ve been dialing the 800 number for three weeks at various times and it is always busy and to call back again. I personally think someone is lazy on the other end of the line and is refusing to do their job…. I would like to talk to someone with a heartbeat instead of getting the old machine hang up call. Frustrating to know this is happening….

    • Well, the only option left is to visit an Unemployment Office in the vicinity. You will find the locations on the official website of the Unemployment Division in your state.

  7. My salary is being reduced by 19.5%. This is due the company being in a bad financial situation and trying to reduce the parole. What is the percentage for reduced pay that allows for quitting the job and drawing unemployment compensation.

    • One can draw partial unemployment benefits for a reduction in the standard work hours. However, I am not sure if you can draw for a reduction in pay.

      Please call the Unemployment Office for further details.

    • The first claim should not take more than 7-10 working days to be processed and credited.

      Please call the Claims Center on the phone numbers provided for an update.

  8. Ive been apapplying for three weeks and i havent received any notification if i was approved for unemployment

  9. I have been getting unemployment for about 6 weeks, actively looking for a job. I had a very small 401k plan at myour previous job that I received. I just called to file for the week and am a little confused at the question, we’re you eligible for retirement plan? I answered no, because I am not of age. Was that wrong?

  10. My initial unemployment claim was denied because I voluntarily resigned the position at a job I held for 6 years. It has been 4 months and I have yet to find work. Can I reapply for unemployment benefits due to the lack of work?

  11. I was fired from my job because I had no choice but to call in(it was due to the water companies error-cut my water off even though I paid the bill!they reviewed camera footage and saw I did pay and finally cut it back on).I had called in prior because after I started working there my 9 yr old was diagnosed with a brain question is..any chance I can get unemployment? I filed already… Praying I get em!!! I Had NO choice but to call in to get it fixed..

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

      Please inquire further with the Unemployment Office in your state by calling them.

  12. I quit my job because my mother got sick and I told my manager that I couldn’t work until she got well. He told me I was eligible for re-hire and told me when I could come back to let him know that my job would be waiting for me. When I could come back I called him and he told me to meet him at the store and I did but he never showed. I called the nxt day and he told me to call him another day and I did but he never answered or hired me back. Am I eligible for uc?

    • You should be able to collect UI.

      Please call the Unemployment Office in your state for confirmation.

      • How do I get a copy of my wages of how much I am getting never received a letter of how much I received weekly,

        • Michael,

          You should be able to download a statement after you login. Please explore the options or call the Unemployment Office for clarification.

  13. I’ve been working at this company for 8 years.we have a automatic schedule we are supposed to go my department I am the only one working all midshift.I have a child in school.if I turn in my notice can I still file for my unemployment.not being treated fair at work

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

  14. I trying to file my weekly claims on my phone it’s asking me did i have any other reportable earnings which i don’t but it’s telling me i should for work i performed

  15. I am still considered employed by the same company I have been working for, but due to the fact that my last client passed away, I haven’t been working for the past 3 weeks.. I am hoping to be working again soon with the same company, but as of now don’t know how long it will be.. I have not been laid off or fired from company, nor have I resigned my position and do not intend to.. I have been looking for other income in my area of work, but so far have not found anything.. Can I receive unemployment benefits temporarily until I either have a new client assigned to me by my current employer or I find another job??

    • I guess you should be able to apply and receive.

      Please call the Unemployment Office in your state to confirm and apply accordingly.

  16. We have been claiming for 3-4 weeks now, I know there is a waiting week, but for the past 4 weeks it has told me it is a waiting week. I can not get ahold of anyone on the phone. (We are in Alabama) I am assuming because of the layoffs that happen during the holidays. Everytime I call, there is either a busy signal, or a recording telling me there is a high call volume to call back! HELP! What can I do to contact them! I have been calling this number. 1-800-361-4524

    • Please try to find other phone numbers on the official website.

      You can also try to check online by logging in. I guess, the delay is due to the holiday season.

  17. 600 people are being layed off December 31, 2015. I knew about the lay off so I started working a part time job just in case we were layed off earlier. My question is – can I apply for unemployment benefits just like everyone else that will be layed off. If not, can I take advantage of the other benefits that everyone else is entitled to i.e. job placement, job training – if not, why. I make 350 a week and bring home maybe 260 or so from the part time job. I have been working in my present position for over 6 years.

    • You should be able to, without any hassles.

      You may want to check with the labor authorities in your state and apply accordingly.

  18. ok please help I am freaking out because we have bills to pay and are on the verge of loosing everything. I checked the status of my weekly claim and it says that I have qualifying weekly and a max benefit amount. I qualify for 265 a week for a max of 5640.00…… my first week under the status it says that it is the waiting week and gives me a certification date on the next week it also gives me a certification date however the status says “not paid”….. can someone please tell me what this means other than the obvious, like am I denied for benefits? or is this a waiting thing? please help

    • It simply means that it is still being processed. Once approved, there is no way it can be denied.

      Instead of panicking, please call the claims center to get details of the actual payment date.

  19. i haven’t received payments but once since filing and missed one week calling in…how can i recover the weeks missed from 11-7-15?

  20. My plant is scheduled to close permanently on 10-30-15, I am eligible for social security, can I draw social security, and unemployment concurrently.

    • You will not qualify since personal reasons like pregnancy is not considered.

      Please inquire further with the labor dept in your state.

  21. I quit my job at the beginning of august. they have no safeties on their machines. I know I qualify for unemployment, but I really dont want to face my employer again to prove unsafe workplace. I have pictures of the machines with the safeties broken off. Will that be good enough?

    • Yes, definitely. As long as you can prove if there is a dispute, you can receive.

      Please go ahead and consider applying. If they deny based on employer’s feedback, you can ask for an adjudicator.

  22. I was laid off from my job on June 30th. I immediately started application for unemployment seeing that I didn’t know for how long I’d be out of work It’s now 4 weeks and the same job asked for me to work one day. I worked 8 hours, can I still draw my unemployment? I know it varies state by state, but I figured I was damned if I do damned if I don’t. Please let me know because as of yet I still haven’t received any unemployment.

    • Working just a day should not affect your claim.

      Please follow up with the claims department for an update. It does not take 4 weeks unless they have notified you advance.

  23. Due to K-mart closing stores many people are losing there job one of the main question is can the employee start there pension and draw unemployment while they look for another job?

    • Depends.

      Pension may be a hurdle in some states. Please speak to the customer service of the labor dept in AL for more information.

  24. I have worked for this construction company for the last 8 years. We are between jobs and they say it may be 6 weeks before we start another one can I receive benefits for those 6 weeks?

  25. if you are penalized for 8 weeks but file weekly claims every week for those 8 week do you have to reopen your claim or file all over again?

  26. It has been a month since i applied for my unemployment and i have called in every sunday and have received nothing. I call the 1-800 number multiple times a day and all it says is that they cant take calls. How can i find out it i will be receiving my benefits or if i have been denied?

  27. I am receiving a retirement check from the Teachers Retirement System of Alabama. I am currently working but my job may be phased out. Can I draw unemployment if receiving a retirment check from the state of Alabama?

  28. I work through elwood staffing at nse new south express and I applied for unemployment for the week of july 4,2013 because the plant was shut down and I have not received my unemployment check as 8/11/2013! could u please review my case and inform me when I will receive my unemployment check because I would have worked if the plant had not shut down for the week. I would greatly appreciate a returned email informing me when I will receive my check thank u jonathan bragg

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