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California Unemployment Benefit Questions

How do I reopen my claim?

If you stop filing your weekly claims (even possibly for one week), your UI claim becomes inactive. If you want to start claiming again, you must first reopen your claim by re-applying for UI benefits. You can reopen your claim any time during your 52-week benefit year for regular UI claims. If your benefit year has ended, you must apply for a new claim.

You may be eligible to reopen an existing federal extension claim if you have a balance remaining and do not monetarily qualify for regular UI benefits.

You may reopen your claim or file a new claim using the EDD’s online application, eApply4UI, or you may call our toll-free phone number and speak to a claims specialist who will reopen your claim or file a new claim. The process for reopening your claim is the same process used to file a new claim. Once you submit your UI application, the EDD will determine whether you will be reopening an existing claim or filing a new claim.

A new or reopened claim takes effect the Sunday of the week you contact the EDD. This means you must contact the EDD during the first week you want to claim benefits. Once you reopen your claim or file a new claim, a Continued Claim form for the following two weeks will be issued to you.

What are holding fees?

Holding fees are payments made to an individual with respect to the filming of a commercial. It is separate from the compensation paid for the hours or days of actual work performance. Holding fees are usually paid at the beginning of each cycle during which the commercial will be used.

The Department considers holding fees to be wages since they are compensation for personal services.

Do federal civilian employees and ex-military personnel qualify for UI benefits?

Yes, federal civilian employees and ex-military personnel qualify for UI benefits. Federal civilian and ex-military personnel are required, however to provide additional documentation.

Federal civilian employees will be required to mail copies of the Standard Form 8 and Standard Form 50 to EDD. These documents are mailed to the employee at the time of separation.
Ex-military personnel will be required to mail a copy of Member 4 of their DD214 to EDD. The DD214 is mailed to the servicemember at the time of separation.

If you do not have your DD214, The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) can provide you with information on your military service and copies of your DD214.

Does work in another state, for the military, or federal government qualify?

Yes, work and earnings from another state can be used to establish a claim. If an individual works for the federal government, or is in military service, work and earnings from overseas can also be used to establish a claim.

Questions & Answers

  1. Jennifer S says:

    I have been working as an independent contractor for the past 15 years. Recently started a salaried position
    n and will be laid off soon. Can I collect unemployment

    • Sam says:

      Jennifer,

      Contract positions do not generally qualify since employers do not pay taxes into the system. Please inquire further with your employer.

  2. Tracey says:

    Is the unemployment benefit retroactive? I stopped working mid June 2017 but did not file until Sept. My last date of work was listed on the unemployment application but I only received benefits based on the date I filed. If it is possible to receive retroactive pay, how do I go about filing for that?

  3. Barbara says:

    Can you collect unemployment benefits and social security at the same time?

  4. Arleen says:

    I worked from May 26 2016 till June 15 2017. I was let go can I fill for UI?

  5. Denise says:

    I quit my job today because the work conditions have been so horrible that I could not stand to do my job properly and effectively. I have picture documents. Most is against food and health regulations. Among other things. I also traveled 35 miles one way on my application I stated I could work any hours after 7 am. But that changed I was expected to work in regular unscheduled hours. Anywhere from 2am on. When I was scheduled to be there at 7 am.. do I qualify for unemployment? Plus mentioning I live in Nevada but worked in California.
    Thank you for your time.

    • Sam says:

      Yes, you can be eligible if you quit due to hostile work conditions.

      Please consider applying and provide documentary evidence in the case of a dispute.

  6. Michael says:

    I’ve seen comments regarding UI eligibility following expiry of a severance package. What exactly does that mean in terms of how the time frame is determined?

  7. Erin McCloskey says:

    I was laid off and applied for benefits on Jan 1, 2017. Then I got a full-time job which lasted during the tax season, until April 18 and now I am jobless again. I applied for a New Claim with a more recent time period as base period but I got a letter saying they simply re-opened my old claim. I didn’t know if I MUST use the old claim or if I can open a new one. There was no explanation provided why they didn’t open a new claim for me. Is this the way things always work or was the EDD person being lazy…? Thank you, Erin

    • Sam says:

      Erin,

      I can understand your frustration. Please call the Claims Center to understand further and to check if any action is required from your end.

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