Arkansas Unemployment Benefit Questions
Many people seeking Arkansas unemployment insurance have questions about how the process works. Here are answers to some of the most common questions.
How to apply for unemployment in Arkansas?
You can apply online or in person at a local Arkansas Workforce Center.
The EZARC system makes it easy to apply for unemployment benefits online. The online application process typically takes around 30 minutes. If you don’t have access to a computer, you can visit any local Arkansas Workforce Services office to apply in person. Learn more about applying for Arkansas unemployment.
How much is Arkansas unemployment?
Your weekly benefit amount is based on your previous earnings during your base period. The maximum amount you can receive each week is $451, and the least amount is $81.
The calculation is based on your average earnings during the base period and dividing that by 26. You can collect up to 16 times your weekly benefit amount, or one-third of your total base period wages, whichever is lower. Learn how to calculate your Arkansas unemployment benefits.
Who qualifies for Arkansas unemployment benefits?
To qualify for unemployment benefits in Arkansas, several requirements must be met. Firstly, you must meet the monetary and work history requirements. Additionally, you must have lost your job through no fault of your own and be physically able to work. You must also be available and actively looking for a new job.
Eligible claimants must also be a citizen of the United States or be legally authorized to work in Arkansas. Learn more about Arkansas eligibility requirements.
Can I quit my job and still get Arkansas UI benefits?
You must be unemployed through no fault of your own. If you were fired for misconduct, it is difficult (but not impossible) to qualify for benefits. Quitting your job typically disqualifies you unless it is for “good cause.” You are allowed to quit for reasons like working in a dangerous or hostile work environment, sexual harassment, to escape domestic violence, or if you have to move because your spouse must relocate for their job.
How long can you draw unemployment in Arkansas?
You can collect Arkansas unemployment for up to 16 weeks, unless there are Extended Benefits (EB) due to a very high unemployment rate.
Be aware that on January 1, 2024, UI benefits will be reduced to 12 weeks per Arkansas law.
How long is the waiting period for unemployment in Arkansas?
There is a one-week waiting period. The waiting period ensures that you meet all eligibility criteria. Please note that you will not receive payment for the waiting period week, though you still must file a weekly claim.
What is the Arkansas unemployment work search requirement?
As a part of the weekly claim process, Arkansas work search requirements are a way to make sure you are looking for work each week. In Arkansas, you must make at least one new job contact per week. Depending on your situation, you may be asked to make multiple job contacts per week and provide documentation of each job contact.
Do I have to pay income tax on my unemployment benefits?
Yes, unemployment benefits are subject to federal income taxes. You can have up to 10% of your weekly benefit amount deducted for payment of federal income tax. In January, you will receive form 1099-G from the IRS so you can report any UI benefits from the previous year.
What is an interstate claim?
An interstate claim is for when you worked in Arkansas but live in a different state.
If you’ve worked in more than one state during the time used to determine your benefits, you may not see wages from those states in your first determination. If you have at least one quarter of Arkansas wages during your base period, you can combine your wages from all states into a combined wage claim.
What happens if my unemployment claim in Arkansas is denied?
If your claim is denied, you have the right to file an appeal within 20 days of receiving the decision. The Arkansas unemployment appeals process is meant to provide a fair opportunity for all unemployed workers to present their case for unemployment eligibility. Learn about the Arkansas UI appeal process.