There will be times when you will be intimidated by that letter you receive by mail or a notification sent via e mail or call. The messenger from the state informs you about a temporary suspension or disqualification from receiving unemployment insurance. This will be a testing phase for you and your family if you’re dependent on the weekly benefits provided by the government.
First of all, do not panic. There is absolutely no point in expressing anguish which will worsen the situation. You must sit down and discuss the reason for suspension or disqualification.
Any time benefits are denied or suspended, the state will send you a letter explaining:
Why was it denied/suspended
for what time period
how to requalify
procedure to appeal if you disagree
Common Reasons for Denial of Unemployment Benefits
The most common (the list is not exhaustive) grounds for disqualification of benefits are given below (Source: Maryland department of labor, licensing and regulation)
1. ABLE AND AVAILABLE – If you are not able to work or not available for full-time work without restrictions.
2. ACTIVE SEARCH FOR WORK – Benefits are denied until you begin making an adequate active search for work.
3. ALIEN STATUS – If you are not a citizen of the United States and your alien status must be determined as required by the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service.
4. ATTENDING SCHOOL OR TRAINING – When you filed your initial claim or your weekly claim certification (request for payment), you indicated that you are currently attending school or training that may interfere with your availability for work.
5. DISCHARGED FROM EMPLOYMENT – Depending on the reason you were discharged, there are three levels of misconduct in the Maryland Unemployment Insurance Law.
6. FRAUD – If you knowingly made a false statement or failed to give important facts in order to obtain or increase benefits.You may be disqualified for one year and must repay all benefits you have received, plus interest. In addition, you may be prosecuted for fraud.
8. MEETING REPORTING REQUIREMENTS – If you fail to report to the Division of Workforce Development when required to do so, or fail to be available for a telephone fact finding interview with the Division of Unemployment Insurance.
9. MILITARY BENEFIT ENTITLEMENT – You are recently separated from the military and it must be determined if you are eligible for unemployment insurance benefits under the Federal Law.
10. MONETARY ELIGIBILITY – You worked full or part-time during a week and you earned more than you reported, or you received holiday pay, vacation pay, special payment, bonus or severance pay, OR there is a question concerning your monetary eligibility for benefits or dependents’ allowance.
11. NOT UNEMPLOYED – You worked full-time during a week and earned more than your weekly benefit amount; or you worked full-time during a week and earned less than your weekly benefit amount; or you were self-employed on a full time basis, regardless or whether you earned any money.
Benefits are denied as long as you are working full-time.
12. OVERPAYMENT – If you received benefits for which you are found to have been ineligible.Benefits are not payable to you until the over payment is repaid.
13. PENSION – You are receiving, have received or will receive a lump sum pension or monthly pension.Your weekly benefit amount may be reduced by the amount of pension you are receiving.
14. REFUSED JOB OR JOB REFERRAL – If you fail to apply for available, suitable work or if you fail to accept such work when offered to you.
15. SEVERANCE PAY – You are receiving, have received or will receive severance pay, dismissal pay, [or] wages in lieu of notice.
16. VOLUNTARY QUIT EMPLOYMENT – You have voluntarily quit your employment.
Do I Re qualify?
After scrutinizing the reason for suspension or disqualification you may decide to reapply on amended terms if it is not severe. Follow the procedure laid out in the enclosures provided (that may come along with the letter of suspension/disqualification) that will provide instructions to reapply to re qualify for unemployment insurance and other benefits.
If you have met the re-qualifying requirements, and have stopped filing weekly claim certifications you must reactivate your claim.
A review of your claim will be done to establish that you have met the requirements. You may be sent requests for information to establish that you have met the re qualifying requirements. Complete the requests and return by the due date.
Workers’ compensation, also known as Workman’s comp, is a state-mandated insurance program that is administered by the federal government for federal and certain other types of employees. Each of the 50 states has its own customised programs for its citizens.
An employee with a work-related illness or injury can get workers’ compensation benefits regardless of who was at fault. In exchange for these guaranteed benefits, employees usually do not have the right to sue the employer in court for damages for those injuries.
The Department of Labor’s OWCP (Office of Workers compensation programs) administers disability compensation programs for workers (or their dependents) who are injured at work or have acquired an occupational disease. A wide range of categorical benefits are extended to workers in need.
The company you are/were working for must carry workers’ compensation insurance or be legally required to do so.
You must be on rolls of that person or company.
The nature of injury or illness must be related to the work and not a personal ailment.
In addition, there are some special regulations for domestic workers, agricultural and farm workers, leased or loaned workers, casual or seasonal workers, and undocumented workers.
Types of Benefits
Workers’ comp benefits can include medical care, rehabilitation expenses, and disability coverage to compensate for lost wages. If you’ve been injured on the job or become ill through your work, you may have already been told that you can receive some or all of these benefits through your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance.
If you are a dependent family member of someone who was killed on the job, you might be entitled to death benefits through workers’ compensation.
Medical benefits available through workers’ compensation include hospital and medical expenses. Workers’ compensation generally covers doctor visits, medication and surgeries and other related expenditure. In some instances, workers’ compensation will also cover services like counselling, pain therapy, and acupuncture.
Rehabilitation benefits cover medical and therapeutic care (such as physical therapy) necessary to help you cope with and recover from your injury or illness. They also cover the care and training necessary for you to regain the skills and abilities you need to return to work.
A temporary total disability is one that prevents you from working at all, but only for a limited amount of time. In other words, you can’t work now, but you will be able to work some day. The vast majority of workers compensation disabilities fall into this category.
A temporary partial disability is one that prevents you from doing some of the duties of your job for a limited amount of time. In other words, you can do parts of your job now, and someday you may be able to do all of the duties of your job, just as you did before your injury.
A permanent total disability is one that prevents you from ever returning to work. You don’t need to be totally helpless or medically incapacitated to fall into this category, just unable to work at your job or a similar one.
A permanent partial disability occurs when the damage is permanent, but it only partially impairs your ability to work.
Most states’ workers’ compensation programs provide death benefits to people who were related to the deceased worker (for example, a spouse, child, parent, or sibling) and were financially dependent on that person. Although most states provide funeral and burial expenses as part of this benefit, the main purpose of the benefit is to compensate dependent family members for the loss of financial support.
Filing a Claim
Get immediate medical care if your injury requires it. You must then inform your employer of your injury as soon as possible. This is a tricky part of processing a workers’ comp claim, since states have wildly different limits on the number of days you have to notify your employer; in most states, the limit is one month, but the range is from a few days to two years.
Your employer will have claim forms for you to fill out and submit or can obtain a form quickly. It then becomes your employer’s responsibility to submit the paperwork to the relevant insurance carrier.
If your injury is not permanent and does not cause you to lose income, getting payment for your medical bills will probably be the extent of your claim. If you are temporarily unable to work because of your injury, you will also begin receiving checks to cover your wage loss—typically within a week or two after your claim is approved. Your employer will notify the insurance company to stop sending you wage-replacement checks as soon as you recover and return to work.
Adjudication is the legal process for settling the dispute between employee and employer.
An unemployed individual applies with the state for weekly unemployment insurance. The state’s labor department begins the process by contacting the last employer to verify the reason for termination of employment. The last employer can question the claim and based on this, the claim may be denied. The claimant may appeal a denied claim. The adjudication hearing or fact finding interview gives the applicant an opportunity to present his case for a contested claim or denied claim.
Once a valid claim has been established, it is then reviewed to determine if you, or a former employer, have provided any information that could come in way of unemployment payments.
If an issue is raised, an adjudicator will review any information that you have already provided, and if additional information is needed, you will be contacted. An adjudicator may contact you by telephone, e-mail or mail. If contacted, you must be prompt and sincere in providing a response at the earliest so that the adjudicator has all information in hand to help him decide.
An issue is a condition or circumstance that could result in the denial of benefits as required by the eligibility and disqualification provisions in law of a particular state.
Potential Reasons for Denial of Benefits
An array of issues as provided below can potentially result in delay or denial of claims filed by the applicant.
You were terminated (fired), you quit, or you are on a suspension or leave of absence from your last employer or other recent employers.
You are a school employee or worked providing services for an educational institution while in the employ of a private employer holding a contract with a public or non-profit educational institution and you are not working because you are between terms or on a vacation or holiday.
You are unable or unavailable to work or to accept work or you are not looking for work or you have failed to report the required contacts with prospective employers for work during a claim week.
You are currently attending school or training(subject to exceptions)
You are currently self-employed, seasonally employed or working as a freelancer.
You are receiving payments of some kind from a recent employer that includes severance.
You refused a suitable job offer or you refused a referral.
The reason for separation from your last employer usually determines whether you are eligible to receive unemployment benefits. If you have not earned the minimum amount as prescribed by the state, then there can be a roadblock that will stop you from qualifying. The adjudicator is required to investigate your separation(s) by finding out why you left the job(s) in case the claim is contested by either of the parties involved. The adjudicator must determine if you were separated from the employer(s) under conditions that might disqualify you from receiving unemployment compensation.
Upon completion of investigation, the adjudicator will issue a written determination(s) which is mailed to you and the employer(s). If there are multiple determinations, all must be favorable in order to receive benefits. For example, if you worked with three different employers and two determinations are favorable and one determination is not, the entire claim is denied and payments cannot be made until that disqualification has been satisfied.
Note: You will be contacted only if information is needed in addition to the information you provided when you filed your claim. Please note the adjudication process can take two to six weeks from the time an issue is raised until a determination is made.
You may request an appeal whenever a determination is not favorable to you. Instructions and procedure for filing an appeal are provided on the website of the state. Assistance is also provided over the phone by the customer service/claims helpline of the labor department.
You must complete the form and submit the appeal using the Internet or you may request an appeal in writing posted to the relevant office in your state.
It’s imperative that you keep self updated on the appeals mechanism available in the state labor unemployment laws. If you think your unemployment will last for a longer duration/believe that the claim filed by you may not easily pass through the regular approval process, you must have sound acquaintance with the basics to face any surprising encounters.
Stopping your unemployment benefits is usually a step that follows retirement, vacation or securing a new job. Unemployment Insurance programs provide monetary benefits to eligible people so that they have temporary financial assistance until they find another stable source of income.
Unlike filing for the benefits, filing to stop the benefits is an easy task. You do not even have to inform the authorities about a new job/ whatever the reason is why you are stopping, you simply have to stop submitting weekly claims. The payments will stop on its own.
How to stop filing for claims
If you don’t submit your weekly claim, you automatically get dropped from the program. You can chose to discontinue the payments any time during your benefit year. Likewise you can also resume claiming your remaining benefits for that benefit year, provided you are still deemed eligible.
Keep in mind that if you stop filing your claim for even a week, your benefit claims become inactive. If this happens, you may have to reopen the claim again during the 1st week of your eligibility.
Once your retirement pension starts arriving, you will have to inform the same to the authorities involved. Trying to receive both payments may land you in trouble. Pension benefits are subject to taxes, if the officials cross check this with your unemployment benefits, they may deem you over-paid and may even ask you to refund the benefit amount that you received.
This is not a rule in all the states. Some states let you collect both the unemployment benefits and the pension benefits, without reducing your benefit amount for U.I. Also, if this is your social security retirement pension, which is quite different from a private employer’s pension, your benefit amount will not be reduced. You need not report about your social security pension benefits to the authorities at U.I.
If you are discontinuing your benefits because you landed a new job, all you have to do it pick true in the field asking you if you are back to work. This is a field that is there on each weekly claim filing form. Once you do this, your benefits will automatically become inactive and you will stop receiving payments.
Whatever the reason may be for discontinuing your unemployment benefits, please ensure that you have enough money to meet necessary expenses. If you receive a new job offer and is unsure if you will like the job or not, do some research about the job before you discontinue your benefits.
If you had a UI claim through a previous employment and received weekly payments, later secured a job and then unfortunately became unemployed again, you may want to consider re-applying for UI benefits if your previous benefit year expired. Most states allow you to reopen your existing claim if it is still in the same benefit year.
Unemployment benefits terminate the moment you stop qualifying for it and the primary reason for becoming ineligible for the benefits is securing a new job. However if the new unemployment does not last long, you can start receiving benefits again by simply reopening your claim.
How It Works
People who lose their jobs a second time, fall into two different categories. This first one being a case a where a person loses his job within 52 weeks of filing for UI. The second, a person who was laid off post expiration of the 52 week period.
For people in the first category, things are pretty easy. You can simply start claiming your benefits, if you have any remaining benefits ie. If you are in the latter category, you may have to reapply for unemployment insurance.
The benefit amount that you will receive and your eligibility criteria may depend heavily on the time duration between your previous unemployment compensation and recent unemployment. It is likely that your previous claim won’t be affecting your new claim in anyway, also your current benefit amount will be calculated from the wages you earned in your most recent employment. In most cases, the amount you receive will be smaller than what you received in the first benefit year.
You must also be able to prove that your recent unemployment is not voluntary or a result of your mistakes.
Details Required To Claim UI Benefits Again
You may need to submit all relevant details again irrespective of whether you are still in the same benefit year. Before you start filing, it will be handy to keep the following information ready.
Personal identification number (PIN)
Motor vehicle card no. / driver’s licence
Complete mailing address with zip code
Names and contact details of all your previous employers
Employer Registration Number or Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) of your latest employer
If you were a federal employee, copies of SF8 and SF50
For military service, your most recent separation form (DD214)
Lastly, your Alien Registration Card no. if you are not a citizen of the U.S.
How To Re-apply For UI Benefits
Should you find yourself unemployed again, you will have to submit a fresh application to restart your old claim. Remember, your claim does not start until you apply for it. So you may want to consider doing that at the earliest. Follow these steps and you’ll be ok soon.
Submit a new claim. You can do this via telephone/internet/mail. We recommend using the internet because that is the fastest way to file a claim.
Wait for a response. Once your claim is taken up, the the State Unemployment Agency will check you remaining benefit balance and examine if you still continue to qualify for the benefits.
I Need Help To File My Claim
If you are disabled or unable to file the claim yourself, you may seek help from a trusted person. It is not mandatory that you have to file your claim yourself. However, no matter how much you trust the person you chose to aid you, we strongly recommend that you be present each time they help you and use your PIN
Also, do keep in mind that you will be held responsible for the actions of your helper. And also you will be subject to penalties and you may even forfeit your benefits if you are NOT PRESENT when a helper aids you.
Extension of Benefits
As you may already know, benefits are usually awarded for a fixed time, typically up to 26 weeks. Once your benefits expire, you will have to reapply for it. The unemployment agency usually sends you a notice informing you that your benefits are about to expire, the notice usually contains information regarding how you can reapply to enjoy continued benefits.
Unfortunately, claims can be denied sometimes. Several reasons could lead to this. The most commonly seen reason for claim denial is when the unemployment agency fails to determine that you lost your job through no error of yours. Or if you have not earned sufficient wages during a base period. Whatever the case is, the agency holds the right to deny your claim if they find you ineligible.
However, if you claim gets denied, you can always request the agency to reconsider your application. To do so, you will have to file an appeal. Directions on how to do so are usually enclosed within the letter you received from the agency stating that your claim has been denied. In most cases, there is a specific time-frame within which you must reapply if you want to send an appeal.
I Don’t Think I Will Qualify
Has reading so much has lead you to believe that you won’t qualify for the benefits? If so, we still strongly recommend that you still proceed with filing your application. This article is only of an informative nature. Only the State Unemployment Agency has the absolute authority to decide if you qualify or not. Apply all the same, we’ll think of the rest later. You can also refer to our Unemployment Q & A section for more information.
Hunt For Jobs
Not Steve Jobs, the ones that pay you for the work you do. You know that you can’t go on depending on your UI benefits forever. Also, it is imperative that you actively search for a new job because it is one of the requirements that you must fulfill in order to qualify for the benefits.
A Word of Advice
We understand that you are going through a very difficult stage. Worrying about it too much is not going to help in any way, in fact it will only lead to adverse effects on you. Try to stay positive, spend time with your loved ones and search for new employment opportunities. Update your social media profiles so that they become more employer- friendly and never give up faith! Good luck guys!
Partial unemployment insurance programs are meant for full time employees who fail to work the stipulated full-time due to lack of work. Such claims are filed by the employers for employees who do not work full-time during the pay period owing to lack of work or by the employees themselves. This is usually done when employers want to retain employees even though there isn’t sufficient work.
You still have to be on the payroll of a company in order to receive benefits. The eligibility is often determined by the state law, hence you may notice variations according to the state where you file your claims. In general, the following are the criteria that you must satisfy in order to qualify for the program.
You must be able to work and you should be available for work.
The time you worked or are working in a week must be less than what is by law decided as full time. i.e., If x number of hours per week is considered as the full-time work duration, you should have worked less than x hours in order to qualify.
The only reason that makes you work less than the standard full-time duration should be lack of work and nothing else.
You should be working for the employer and your weekly earnings should be less than the weekly benefit amount.
You must establish monetary eligibility.
How to file
As mentioned before, partial unemployment insurance claims are filed by the employer for an employee. To do this you must first ensure the following:
He/she is a full time employee
He/She is a citizen of the USA
He/She is laid off temporarily due to insufficient work
Is not on vacation
Has accepted and done all the work given out to them so far
Is without earnings for no more than six weeks post layoff
Is not receiving retirement pension
Earned stipulated wages during the base period
The application procedure is not very different from the procedure for total unemployment. Claims can be filed through the Internet or via telephone. If you have to do it via the Internet, you will need to obtain a password by submitting an Employer Internet Password Application. Filing via Internet is by far the fastest method.
As of October 2012, if you weekly earnings are $500 or above, you will not be eligible for the program, no matter what your weekly benefit rate is.
Okay, so this is how you calculate the benefits you may receive. You have to report the sum total of wages earned during a week, this includes tips or any other source of income. These wages you report will then be reduced from your partial benefit rate which is around 20% higher than your weekly benefit rate. In any case, the benefit you receive will never be higher than the weekly benefit rate.
Consider this example. Assume you earn $100 a week. Your partial benefit rate as mentioned is 20% higher so that becomes $120. If you earned $50 during a week, you will receive $120- $50 = $70. Hence, $70 will be the amount of benefit you receive.
Your partial unemployment benefits are either received via direct deposit or debit.You can check with your state unemployment insurance office for further information. You will receive benefits until you receive full weekly benefits or until the benefits year end.
Financial constraints can be difficult for every human being. Try to stay calm and positive. Actively search for new and better opportunities and always remember, a healthy attitude can solve most problems!
We have created an awesome Infographic that tells you how Unemployment Program works and how to claim your Benefits. We have explained the claim process in 6 easy steps.
How to get your unemployment benefits
Ensure that you qualify for the benefits. The standard criteria for making you eligible are as follows.
You should have lost your job due through no fault of yours.
You must have worked in the last 4 to 5 calendar quarters.
You must be physically capable of doing work.
And last but not the least, you must be an active job seeker.
Once you have made sure that you indeed passed these criteria, you can proceed to step 2.
Let’s figure out how much you probably will receive as benefits. The weekly benefit amount you will receive is directly dependent on your earnings during the last four calendar quarters. This is however a state dependent matter and therefore the amount you receive will vary from state to state.
In general, the amount you receive will be approximately half for the average weekly wage you earned during the base period.
Decide on how you plan to file your claim. You can do it via the internet, phone or visit an unemployment office in person to file your claim. Filing online is the fastest way to get it done, we’ve noticed.
Once you’ve done all the previous steps, you are ready to file an initial claim. You will have to keep your SSN, name, address, contact numbers and employment history ready. You may also need some paperwork to prove that you lost your previous job due to no fault of yours.
Register with the state unemployment services. This is compulsory in some states. It is done to make sure that you will actively search for a job. Such unemployment agencies offer job hunt services free of cost!
Continue filing the claim each week or bi-weekly. Yes you read it right! The unemployment insurance office does not simply send you benefits each week if you register with them and file your claim just once. You have to do it weekly/ bi-weekly. This lets them know that you are indeed continuing to meet the eligibility criteria.
That’s all folks. Good luck with filing your claim and may you land a killer job soon! Do visit us often!
If you lost your job recently and are crestfallen and confused, here’s a list of things you should do immediately. We understand that it is a difficult situation and we have collected all the information you will need and summarized that into this article. You might be considering the option of signing up for the Unemployment Insurance, but there are a few things you must do before that.
Step 1: Reflect on Your Situation
Reflect on the circumstances that led to you losing your job. Was it because you under-performed or was it simply because your employers decided to let a few employees go for cost cutting purposes. Evaluate all aspects and come to a fair conclusion.
Find an alternate way to insure your health. Often your employer provides you with health insurance and if you are no longer working with them, it means that your medical bills are not going to be covered. Even if you are in the pink of health, this is a necessary step. We humans have very little control over matters related to health.
Step 3: Embrace Frugalism
Rework your budget and cut unnecessary expenses. As your primary source of income is gone, you may have to cut back on a few luxuries. Make list of things you spend money on and try to figure out what are the things you can live without. For our female readers, try to cut down on your salon visits, you can survive without weekly clean-ups and manicures but you cannot survive without food and shelter.
Step 4: Hunt for Jobs (Not Steve Jobs, the ones that pay you for your work!)
Look for a new job. Don’t consider resting for a while before you look out for another job. Find the job first and then you can peacefully enjoy your break. Make use of programs organized and sponsored by the State or local agencies to speed up your job search.
Step 5: File for Unemployment
This is the most important step. File for unemployment. Do not waste time thinking if this is necessary. Unless you are certain that you will land another stable job within the next two days, it is highly recommended that you look into applying for unemployment benefits, it will cover your temporary financial needs.
This step needs further elaboration about how you should proceed with registering yourself for unemployment and about what benefits you will receive.
What is Unemployment Insurance or the Dole ?
They are social welfare payments made by the State or other Authorized bodies to unemployed individuals. The amount disbursed depends on various factors that includes earned income, reason for being unemployed etc. They are usually small and are intended to cover the basic necessities. You have to register for unemployment compensation if you want to receive the cover payments and you will also have to prove that you have registered yourself to find another job and that you lost your previous job due to no fault of your own.
The Department of labor along with state partners work to identify various strategies to help deal with the unemployment issues effectively. Here are the things you should know if you want to apply for Unemployment insurance.
Usually, the benefits are calculated based on the person’s performance over a recent 52-week period.
Benefits are paid for a maximum of 26 weeks in most states.
You can avail additional weeks of benefits during crisis periods like times of High Unemployment. Certain states provide benefits for specific purposes too. Speak to a representative from the customer service or claims department of the Labor Department in your state.
The money you receive are subject to taxes and the same must be reported to the Federal Income tax department.
You have to be determined to have lost your previous job due to no mistake of your own. There a few other eligibility criteria. It varies with the state.
State requirements regarding your wages or time worked during a specific period ( often called as the base period) must be met. The base period is usually the first four out of the last five completed calendar quarters prior to the time that your claim is filed. You can also check your eligibility online.
How to apply?
Contact the State Unemployment Insurance agency (affiliated to the State Labor Department) at the earliest post becoming unemployed. You can even do this via a telephone call.
While you file, you will be asked to provide certain information like your address and dates of your previous employment. Provide accurate and authentic information to avoid unnecessary delays.
It is customary that you file your claim in your native state. However if your last employment was in a different state, the agent at your local Unemployment Insurance agency will guide you with the same.
It takes around 15-20 days post filing your claim for your first benefit cheque to arrive. Certain states have a one week waiting period and the second week is claimed as the first week of payment.
If you wish to extend the eligibility period, you must file weekly and biweekly claims ( after your eligibility time period ended) and respond to the questions your agency asks you.
You will be expected to report to your local Unemployment Insurance Claims office or the One-stop/ Employment service office on the date and time specified by the authorities. Failing to do so may conclude in your claims being denied.
You must continue to meet the eligibility criteria as laid down by your state.
Register yourself for work
Claimants may be directed to register with the State Employment Service. They shall assist you with finding a new job.
If job offers in your field are limited, the staff at the Employment Service will help you take tests and counselling that will determine alternate sectors for you in which you are likely to perform well.
Should you believe that you have special needs and other considerations, the staff will refer you to institutions that will help you accordingly.
Grounds for claim denial
If you lost your previous job for any reason other than “lack of work”, an enquiry will be conducted to determine if you are genuinely eligible for the Insurance.
The enquiry will be conducted by authorized state officials to see if you fall under the criteria laid down by the State or Federal laws.
You can file for an appeal if you have been deemed unqualified. If you wish to file appeal, you must do so within a specific time period.
It can be difficult to stay calm during such times. Try to remain positive, never let your current state dishearten you or shatter your confidence. Do not get discouraged, take steps in the right direction. Update your resume, make your social media profiles more employer-friendly and spend quality time with family and friends to maintain a healthy state of mind. Finding a new job must be your top priority activity. We’re sure something will come up soon, Goodluck!
For those of you proverbial with unemployment benefit programs funded and administered by the federal and state governments, you may be one of thousands of vexed citizens worried about the roadblocks in extension of the EUC (emergency unemployment compensation) which expired as of 28th December 2013. The end of festive season has brought despair to thousands actively looking for jobs.
About Emergency Unemployment Compensation(E.U.C)
EUC is a 100% federally funded program that provides additional weeks of benefits to individuals who have exhausted regular state benefits. The EUC program was created on June 30, 2008, and has been since amended several times. Most recently, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (P.L. 112-240) extended the expiration date of the EUC program to January 1, 2014. To date, Congress has not passed any further extension.
A little more than 2 million long term unemployed citizens have been affected due to the immobility of Congress on extending the EUC that had become a lifeline for the unemployed, providing additional weeks of relief payment in times of uncertainty. Normally, the regular state provided unemployment compensation could be availed up to 26 weeks. This website receives numerous questions and inquiries from anxious citizens in this regard.
Asks Dan, an infuriated victim of this ordeal, “is congress playing with us as if they were god they are foreseeing us to lose everything that we all worked hard for. When will they pass the extension? Or is this a joke government is playing on us?”.
Like Dan, we receive hundreds of posts from people who are finding forums like this to voice their frustration. People who were dependent on such schemes are now unable to pay their monthly bills, buy grocery, loans seeing foreclosure and so on.
A Renewed Hope
Denizens and lobbyist groups are finding unique ways to protest by using the powerful social media. #RenewUI is their new mantra.
There is mounting hope at the end of this long tunnel that has grown out to exist for more than 75 days now. In what looks like a path breaking move, A bi-partisan panel led by Sens. Jack Reed, D-R.I., and Dean Heller, R-Nev., late last week issued a statement saying they had come up with a deal to reinstate the benefits — and pay for them. The deal is for five months and already has lined up an impressive list of supporters, Sens. Susan Collins, R-Maine, Rob Portman, R-Ohio, Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, Mark Kirk, R-Ill., Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., Cory Booker, D-N.J., Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Dick Durbin, D-Ill.
Whilst things begin to take shape, we urge our readers and patrons to be a little more patient and keep track of national news. You can also consider finding various support and protest groups in your state and joining them which will strengthen them in their cause. Remember, you are not alone. Your ultimate goal should be to find a suitable job and accept any lucrative offers without falling much on these monetary benefits which provides temporary relief.
Unemployment insurance programs are governed by State governments and are funded by state, federal and private companies that pay employment tax. Ultimately, the onus is on the state government to balance the checkbook, so the state has to decide the benefits maximum amount, duration, and eligibility to receive the benefits. For this reason, you notice that unemployment benefits largely vary by state.
Some states like Illinois could pay as high as $1,495 depending on the eligibility criteria. But only a handful of states such as Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Jersey provide such generous benefits. Majority of the states provide average benefits in the range of $300 to $500.
This table provides a complete list of unemployment benefits and duration for all 50 states. It provides the maximum dollar amount per week and also the maximum number of weeks benefits provided by each state.
Comparison of State Unemployment Benefits
Max Weeks of Benefits
Max. DA Allowance
Total Weekly Benefits
Dist of Columbia
Benefits Comparison Chart
The following comparison data provides an overview of benefits and shows which states pay well:
States that pay highest unemployment insurance compensation
Illinois – $1,495
Massachusetts – $1,179
Maine – $855
Ohio – $753
Connecticut – $706
Massachusetts provides the highest amount, but please note that the amount ranges from $769 to $1,537 depending on your eligibility. In terms of the duration, most of the top 5 states provide similar coverage.
States that pay lowest unemployment insurance compensation
Mississippi – $235
Arizona – $240
Louisiana – $247
Alabama – $265
Florida – $275
Mississippi pays the lowest amount in the country, followed by Arizona.
States that provide unemployment compensation for a longer duration
Massachusetts – 30 Weeks
Montana – 28 Weeks
States that provide unemployment compensation for a shorter duration
Florida – 12 Weeks
North Carolina – 12 Weeks
Missouri – 13 Weeks
Georgia – 14 Weeks
Kansas – 16 Weeks
Not surprisingly, the states that provide unemployment insurance coverage for a shorter duration also provide less money. These are the “stingy” states you don’t want to live if you fear unemployment. These states are more likely to be business friendly as businesses don’t have to pay as much employment taxes compared to other states.
State Performance Excellence Awards
Dept. of Labor awards the states based on their performance every year. The awards are given based on management, planning, and oversight resulting into efficient service to workers and employers. This map shows six states that won the Performance Excellence Awards for 2018:
Source: Data was collected from various govt. websites. There may be some minor errors and you are advised to contact the State employment office for most accurate and up-to-date info. Information is current as of December 2017. For further reading on unemployment insurance, please refer to the following articles: