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Arizona Unemployment Eligibility

Arizona Unemployment Eligibility

Arizona Unemployment Eligibility Calculator

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How to qualify for Arizona unemployment benefits

The Arizona unemployment insurance program has eligibility requirements you must meet to receive benefits. These requirements include meeting specific wage and employment history criteria, actively seeking new employment opportunities, and being physically able and available to work.

In order to qualify for Arizona’s unemployment insurance benefit program, you must:

  1. Be unemployed through no fault of your own
  2. Be a resident of the United States or be legally authorized to work in Arizona
  3. Be able to work
  4. Be available to work
  5. Be actively seeking work
  6. Register with the Arizona Job Connection
  7. Participate in the Reemployment Services and Eligibility Assessment Program
  8. Meet the wage requirements

Monetary eligibility requirements

To receive Arizona unemployment insurance benefits, you must have earned enough money during your base period. Your base period is the first four out of the past five completed work quarters.

You can add wages you earned in other states to qualify. Combining wages from different states can help you increase your weekly benefit amount.

Use the Arizona Unemployment Calculator to determine whether you are financially eligible for UYI benefits and estimate your weekly benefit amount.

Wage credits

A wage credit refers to any income that an individual earns while working, which is used to determine eligibility for certain benefits or programs, including unemployment insurance. Your employers will report your wages to the government every three months. All the wages you earned during your base period will be added up from all your employers to determine the amount of unemployment benefits you might qualify for.

In Arizona, you must have worked for an employer who paid unemployment tax while earning:

  • At least 390 times the Arizona minimum wage in your highest earning quarter, with the other three quarters combined being worth at least half that amount. OR
  • You need to have earned at least $7,000 over two quarters in the base period, with at least one quarter’s earnings being $5,987.50 or more

Non-monetary UI benefit eligibility requirements

In order to receive UI benefits in Arizona, there are a few non-monetary requirements that you must fulfill. First, you must be actively searching for new employment opportunities and be able and available to work. This means that you should be actively applying for jobs and attending job interviews.

Second, you must register with the state’s job matching service, Arizona Job Connection. This is normally done for you after you fill out the initial application for benefits, but you may receive a notice with instructions to complete registration if more information is required.

Third, you must make work search contacts on at least four different days of the week.

Finally, you must attend any job search assistance or reemployment activities required by the Arizona Department of Economic Security.

How many weeks of Arizona unemployment do I qualify for?

The number of weeks you can receive benefits depends on the unemployment rate in your area.

If the average unemployment rate in the previous three months is 5% or more, you can receive up to 26 times the amount of money you would get each week. However, if the average unemployment rate is less than 5%, you can only receive up to 24 times the weekly amount.

If anything changes during the time you are receiving benefits, you will be given a new statement that shows how much money you qualify for.

Maintaining Eligibility

Filing Weekly Continued Claims

If you are applying for unemployment compensation benefits, it’s important to know that you need to file a continued weekly claim every week, even if you don’t think you are eligible for benefits for that week.

If you work or earn any money during the week, you must report the total amount you earned before taxes when you file your unemployment claim, even if you haven’t been paid yet.

You also must actively search for work. This means that you should make contact with potential employers at least four days each week. Your search for work should focus on finding jobs that match your experience, education, and training.

What is considered suitable work?

Suitable work means a job that matches your training, skills, and experience. The job should also pay a similar amount to what you earned before.

If you turn down a job offer that fits this criteria, you may not be eligible to receive unemployment benefits anymore.

What does being unemployed through no fault of my own mean?

Being unemployed through no fault of your own typically means that you were laid off because of a business closing, a reduction in work, or some other economic reason.

However, if your separation from your last job was due to a different reason, a decision will be made about whether you are eligible to receive benefits. The decision about your eligibility will be made according to the laws that apply in Arizona or at the federal level.

In general, quitting or being fired for misconduct does not qualify for unemployment insurance.

Can I receive benefits while self-employed?

Self-employed wages will not be counted toward your base period earnings because they are not considered wage credits earned by someone working for an employer that pays unemployment taxes.

However, if you are engaging in self-employed activities while receiving unemployment compensation, you must report any work you do or income you receive on your weekly continued claim.

What would disqualify me from the Arizona UI benefit program?

Here are a few examples of issues that may affect your eligibility for unemployment benefits and prevent you from receiving payment:

  • Quitting your last job without good cause
  • Losing your last job due to misconduct
  • Refusing an offer or referral to work
  • Providing false information on your claim
  • Failing to make a sincere effort to find suitable work
  • Being sick or injured
  • Attending school full-time
  • Failing to search for work
  • Being away from the area
  • Not being ready or willing to work
  • Missing a Re-employment Services Orientation appointment
  • Failing to return necessary UI claim documents within specified timeframes
  • Refusing or not responding to a referral for suitable work by the Arizona Department of Economic Security Employment Service
  • Receiving retirement pay (other than Social Security)
  • Receiving severance pay
  • Receiving vacation or holiday pay during the period for which benefits are claimed.

It’s important to note that this list is not exhaustive, and all eligibility determinations are subject to Arizona law and the Arizona Department of Economic Security.

When do I no longer qualify for Arizona unemployment insurance?

You will no longer qualify for Arizona unemployment insurance once you return to work full time, earn more than your weekly benefit amount + $160, or exhaust the number of weeks that you’re eligible to receive benefits.

If any of these situations apply, you do not need to notify the Arizona Department of Economic Security—you can simply quit filing your weekly continued claims.

  1. my husband worked for USNAVY 25 years and relocated to Arizona October 2018, he tried a few different jobs and they just weren’t the job he is used to doing. If he leaves this current job he is trying out but not within his job description can he get unemployment and look for a job? Would he apply in WA? even though he wasn’t fired but moved to AZ due to his mom in a serous roll over accident and he needed to live closer?
    thank you

    • Stacy,

      If he is exiting his current job due to voluntary reasons, he will not be eligible. A claimant should be applying from the state where the employment was based.

    • Shannon,

      That is a weird reason to fire you! Unless its an issue with your performance/behavior and other voluntary reasons, they cannot just fire you. Please go ahead and speak to the Unemployment Office. You might be just eligible.

      • Hello ~ I am applying for Unemployment in Arizona. The questioner asked Do you ha e a physical condition or disability that would limit your ability to work now?
        I am on a 20 pound weight lifting restriction by my doctor due to a previous work injury.
        Is that a limit I need to tell Unemployment about? It isn’t limiting my ability to work now. And will that disqualify me for unemployment? Thank you.

        • Im being fired from my place of employment due to attendance because I have been sick would i be eligible for unemployment

        • Josh,

          Please note UI benefits are only available to claimants who lose employment due to involuntary reasons such as “Layoffs”.

        • Drew,

          If that hampers your prospects of applying for a job in your field, it might be an issue. Please speak to the Unemployment Office for clarification.

  2. My position was grant funded and our renewal was not approved so my position will be eliminated. If the company offers me an interview for a lower paying position and I deny being interviewed (due to the low pay), will that disqualify me for unemployment?

    • Allen,

      If you decide not to accept the new position, it may be considered voluntary on your part. Please call the Unemployment Office for a detailed discussion.

  3. I moved from Nevada a few weeks ago due to loosing my home I worked in Nevada but haven’t had any luck yet here finding a job. I also don’t have an az license yet can I file an unemployment claim in Arizona or do I have to file in Nevada?

    • Miranda,

      If you lost the previous job due to involuntary reasons, please apply from the state where your employment was based.

      • I relocated and was able to work remote due to schools being closed , school is back in session now but I have relocated so cannot return . Am I eligible for Unemployment from Arizona while I look for work ?

  4. I was involuntary terminated from my job after 11 years at the hospital. am i able to apply for unemployment

  5. I have been employed by the same company since 1994. I was laid off in Feb. 2017. I did not apply for unemployment, because I thought with my experience I could find another job.
    I am still employed in Oct. 2017. Am I still eligable to file for unemployment or am I disqualified because of the time lapsed?

    • Ken,

      Please use the “Benefits Calculator” available on this website. I am guessing you should be eligible. Please consider applying.

  6. I’m starting school in two weeks and my job is starting to tell me they won’t work around my school schedule. Am I eligible for UE while in school?

    • Since your schooling affects eligibility to work and draw compensation, you may not qualify.

      Please call the Unemployment Office for further details.

      • I was charged with a dui while camping in my car at the grand canyon. I wasnt driving.
        Due to it being federal lands, I was held in detention until my court date. As a result my employer terminated my employment. Am I eligible for unemployment benefits?

        • Hi, Dana – one of the key criteria for unemployment benefits is that you are unemployed through no fault of your own. When you file your claim, the Arizona unemployment office also will reach out to your former employer to verify the reason for your separation from employment. If they report that you were fired for cause – like breaking company policy, etc. – it’s very unlikely that your claim would be approved.

  7. I was laid off with a salary of $52,000 annually. I received benefits for 6 months ending in Feb 2017. I have not found a job paying nearly that amount
    If I take a position for far less and am eligible to reapply for benefits?

    • Unemployment Insurance benefits are not revolving in nature. You would only be able to claim them for one full cycle.

  8. I was allowed to resign in lieu of being involuntary terminated. The reason verbally given was due to “performance issues”. The employer and I agreed that I would remain on payroll for 3 months after my last physical day working and receive compensation for the purpose of finding other employment during this time. My compensation for the 3 months has come to an end (as of last week) and during this time I have applied for two other jobs. I was not extended a job offer. Would I be eligible for unemployment benefits?

    • Well, personal reasons such as performance are not considered. You may not qualify for Unemployment Compensation.

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

  9. I recently moved here from out of state because my husband got transferred. Had to quit my job and haven’t had any luck finding work here so far. Am I eligible for AZ unemployment even though I’ve never worked in this state before?

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

    • Please call the Unemployment Office in the state to confirm eligibility.

      Not sure if contracted workers would be eligible.

  10. I work at a hotel. We are busy except in the months of July, August and September. Can I collect unemployment during those months?
    Because we are busy again October thru June.

  11. I applied for unemployment and was denied because I made less the 390 times the minimum wage and it was a voluntary quit due to me moving across state (3 hours away)…I’m going back to school soon.but I need some sort of income. ..what do I do?

  12. I was on unemployment and was offered a job as an independent contractor, this job is ending after only working for less than months, would i be eligible from my previous claim?
    thank you,

  13. I work per diem but I still work 18hrs a week. If something should go wrong would I be eligible for unemployment until I get another job?

    • Not sure what you mean by “Go Wrong”. Please elaborate.

      If your job is on the rolls of the company and if you’re laid off, you can be eligible.

  14. I broke my leg and had sugery and will not be able to work for 6 months. Im have no short term disability ins, will I be able to get anything to help me out.

    • Unfortunately, UI is extended only to those who are able and available to work.

      You may be eligible for benefits under the workers comp scheme.Please check with your employer.

  15. I am unemployed and getting benefit. I have been out of work again for 2 months. Both of my kids will be in school soon so i thought i might go to school part time and still be able to work. My question though and i cant get through on the phone lines, they keep hanging up…Will my benefits stop if i goto school in the day for 4 hours a week.

    • So, I work for company that pays off of ticket work. I do not get paid for being in the office, however I do get paid for the ticket work I do. This job went from providing me 40 hours a week (making about 40k a year) to no available work, because the company is failing. The owner has kept all the employees on however he has no work for us to do, there for we are not making any money. Can I qualify for unemployment even though I technically have a job?

      • Your job looks like more of a freelance. You may not qualify.

        Please check with the labor dept in your state.

    • I understand that there will high call volumes at certain time of day or specific days in a week.Try calling them during non-peak hours.

      In some states,you can go to school and qualify for UI benefits as well.I don’t think 4 hours in a week should really have any impact.

    • You can, if you meet the eligibility.

      Please consider applying from the state where you were last employed.

  16. I applied for unemployment last Oct 2013 and was denied because I could not look for a job due to having had surgery on my foot. I’m now healed and ready to find a job. Can I re-apply for unemployment benefits??

  17. My husband works in Laughlin Nevada but we live in Bullhead City Arizona…his work hours went from fulltime (40) hrs p/wk to 24 hours….is he eligible to file for partial unemployment and if so does he file in Arizona or Nevada?

  18. I have been with my company since March of 2013 and and two weeks ago was told that I did not have the skills in their opinion to keep doing my job. This was after I had recieved a $4.00 an hour pay raise and told that I was doing great. I have been running two hotels maintenance department with no assistant in the second hotel. They asked me to pick a day I would like to leave and so I picked the 20th of December and then the next day my company asked me to stay until January 1st because the new guy could not start until then. I agreed because I need the money, however, was told that there is no more opportunity for me here after the 1st. Do I qualify for unemployment in AZ? I have already been looking for jobs, submitting my resume and have done 1 interview already.

  19. I am currently ADHD voc rehab did the testing. In march 2013 was given a written warning about a unhappy customer and because I had issues before finding this out. Was told if it happens again I could be let go. I just had a glowing annual review and due to a call shortly my fathers passing and before his birthday, I agree it was a bad call today and was put admin leave without pay until they decide if I come back. My supervisor is to call me. Would that stop me from receiving unemployment.?

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