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Connecticut Unemployment Job Search Requirements

In order to remain eligible for the Connecticut unemployment insurance program, it is required that you actively seek full-time employment. This involves reaching out to potential employers every week, even if you are currently working part-time.

Work search requirements for Connecticut unemployment insurance

The Connecticut unemployment insurance program requires claimants to complete a minimum of three work search activities per week, with at least one of them being contacting an employer about a job opportunity.

For instance, you can either make three employer contacts, or have two employer contacts along with one additional work search activity, or have one employer contact combined with two other work search activities.

Starting July 7, 2021, individuals filing a weekly claim will need to input their work search activities online. It is mandatory to answer specific work search questions as part of the weekly filing process.

The CT Department of Labor has provided this work search log for claimants to keep track of their efforts. You will be asked for information about the employers you contact, including:

  • Date of activity
  • Employer name and address
  • Type of work sought
  • Phone number
  • Contact person
  • Method of contact

The CT Department of Labor will review and confirm your work search activities as part of their unemployment fraud prevention efforts.

What is a work search activity?

A work search activity refers to any action you take to find a new job. In Connecticut, there are a variety of acceptable work search activities, including:

  • Applying for a full-time position that matches your skills and qualifications. This is considered an “employer contact” activity.
  • Attending a job interview or following up on a previous one (Note: interviews and follow-ups do not count as employer contacts).
  • Participating in reemployment services provided by your local American Job Center. This includes workshops or job fairs.
  • Attending job fairs or networking events organized by formal organizations

Invalid work search activity

Here are a few examples of activities that are not considered acceptable when searching for a job:

  • Applying for a job you are not qualified for
  • Just looking at job listings without applying
  • Failing to follow the employer’s instructions for applying, such as not submitting an online application when instructed to do so.
  • Attending the same workshop over and over.

Work registration

When you apply for unemployment benefits, you agree to share your information with the Connecticut Workforce Development System and its partners. This means you will be automatically registered with CTHires, the Connecticut Department of Labor’s Employment Services System.

To improve your chances of finding a new job, visit CTHires and complete your job seeker profile, including uploading your resume. This action will count as one of your work search efforts.

Do I have to accept any job?

When receiving Connecticut unemployment compensation, you are required to accept any suitable job offers. However, the concept of “suitable employment” can vary based on factors such as your skills, qualifications, previous work experience, and current labor market conditions.

If you refuse a suitable work offer without a valid reason, it may affect your eligibility to continue receiving UI benefits. It’s important to comply with the job search requirements and carefully consider job offers to fulfill your obligations as an unemployment benefits recipient.

Connecticut unemployment job training programs

The state of Connecticut offers a wide range of job training benefits to help you fulfill the state work search requirements, including:


CareerConneCT is a comprehensive online platform that provides valuable resources and tools to help you explore and plan your career path. It offers a wide range of information on various industries, job profiles, educational programs, and training opportunities. It allows you to assess your skills and interests, match you with potential career options, and access relevant job market data. Additionally, the platform assists with resume writing, interview preparation, and job search strategies.

The platform serves as a valuable resource for individuals of all ages, from students exploring career options to professionals seeking new opportunities. CareerConnecCT can empower workers to make informed decisions about their future and how to achieve their career goals.

Connecticut Apprenticeships

Connecticut Apprenticeships is a structured program that combines on-the-job training with classroom instruction to provide people with valuable hands-on experience and specialized skills in a particular trade or occupation.

Apprenticeships are available in a wide range of industries, including construction, healthcare, manufacturing, and information technology. Participants in apprenticeship programs work under the guidance of experienced mentors or trainers, allowing them to develop practical skills while earning a wage. These programs often lead to nationally recognized certifications or licenses, enhancing employability and career prospects.


CTHires is an online job portal and career development platform provided by the Connecticut Department of Labor. It serves as a centralized resource for job seekers, employers, and workforce professionals in Connecticut.

Through CTHires, individuals can search for job opportunities, upload their resumes, and apply for employment positions. The platform also offers tools and resources to help users enhance their job search skills, including resume builders, career assessments, and job market information. Additionally, CTHires provides workforce professionals with tools to assist in career counseling and job placement services.

Employment for Individuals with Disabilities

Connecticut is committed to providing employment opportunities for people with disabilities, recognizing their valuable contributions to the workforce. The state offers various programs and initiatives aimed at supporting and empowering individuals with disabilities to achieve meaningful employment.

These initiatives include vocational rehabilitation services, job training programs, and job placement assistance. Connecticut also promotes inclusive workplaces by encouraging employers to provide reasonable accommodations and create an accessible and inclusive work environment.

By fostering equal employment opportunities, Connecticut strives to ensure that people with disabilities have the chance to showcase their skills and abilities, leading to greater independence, financial stability, and a sense of belonging in the workforce.


Connecticut JobCorps is a government-funded program that provides education and vocational training to young adults between the ages of 16 and 24. It offers opportunities for people to gain valuable skills and certifications in various fields, such as healthcare, construction, information technology, and more.

Connecticut JobCorps aims to help young adults overcome barriers to employment and achieve self-sufficiency by offering academic instruction, hands-on training, career counseling, and job placement assistance. Participants in the program can earn a high school diploma or equivalent, and develop practical skills through on-the-job training.

Office of the Unemployed Workers’ Advocate

Connecticut’s Office of the Unemployed Workers’ Advocate is a state agency that serves as a resource and support system for people who are navigating the unemployment insurance system. Its primary role is to provide assistance and guidance to unemployed workers, ensuring they understand their rights and responsibilities and helping them address any challenges they may encounter during the claims process.

The office acts as an advocate for unemployed workers, helping them resolve issues, appeals, or disputes related to Connecticut unemployment benefits. It also offers information and resources to help workers re-enter the workforce.

Rapid Response/Dislocated Worker Unit

Connecticut’s Rapid Response/Dislocated Worker Unit is a specialized division that provides comprehensive support to workers who have been affected by layoffs, plant closures, or other significant employment disruptions. The unit collaborates with employers, labor unions, and community organizations to deliver timely and targeted assistance to affected workers.

The unit’s primary goal is to mitigate the impact of job loss by offering a range of services, including job search assistance, skills training, career counseling, and access to unemployment insurance benefits. The Rapid Response team works closely with employers to develop customized plans that address the specific needs of displaced workers, helping them transition into new employment or retrain for in-demand industries.

Shared Work Program

Connecticut’s Shared Work Program is an initiative aimed at providing an alternative to layoffs for businesses facing temporary slowdowns or reduced work hours. The program allows employers to retain their skilled workforce by reducing hours across a group of employees instead of laying off a portion of the workforce. Participating employees receive partial unemployment benefits to supplement their reduced wages, helping them maintain financial stability during the temporary work reduction.

This program not only helps businesses maintain their workforce and avoid costly rehiring and training processes, but also supports employees by providing them with some income security during challenging times. The Shared Work Program promotes economic stability and fosters a collaborative approach between employers, employees, and the state to mitigate the impact of economic downturns on businesses and workers in Connecticut.

Trade Adjustment Division

Connecticut’s Trade Adjustment Assistance program, administered by the Trade Adjustment Division, provides support and assistance to workers who have lost their jobs or experienced reduced hours due to increased foreign imports. The program aims to help these workers transition to new employment opportunities by offering a range of services, including job training, reemployment services, and income support.

The Trade Adjustment Division collaborates with various partners to assess eligibility, provide counseling, and deliver relevant training programs to equip affected workers with the necessary skills for in-demand industries. By assisting workers affected by trade-related challenges, the Trade Adjustment Division plays a vital role in supporting the workforce and promoting economic resilience in Connecticut.

Veteran Services

Connecticut’s Veteran Services are dedicated to providing comprehensive support and assistance to veterans and their families. The state recognizes the sacrifices made by veterans and aims to ensure their successful transition into civilian life. The Veteran Services offer a wide range of programs and resources, including employment assistance, educational benefits, healthcare services, housing assistance, and mental health support.

  1. What happens if I was hospitalized due to having a stroke and was not able to actively look for a job for 2 weeks? Will my unemployment benefits be cancelled or can I file an appeal as I was in the hospital and under doctors care.

    • Hi, MaryJoe – you’re probably going to want to talk to someone either with the Connecticut unemployment office or who has the legal knowledge to assess your situation. In general, you must be able and willing to work in order to receive unemployment benefits, so you may not be eligible if you are hospitalized or otherwise unable to work. You also may check into whether disability benefits may be more appropriate for your situation.

  2. Hi i dont have a drivers liesence i would have to walk to the places i put applications in they are5 miles or more

    • John,

      I tried looking up for that info on the department’s website and could not get clarity. Please call the Claims Center or check your account online for more info.

  3. What constitutes a “work search effort”? Does this only include sent applications or can it include researching potential jobs, negotiating for a contracted job, drafting applications and going on interviews?

    • Patrick,

      It includes all of it and perhaps more. I suggest you speak to the Unemployment Office (Phone Center) to get more clarity on your question.

  4. I was laid off but received a severance pay package. Can I file for unemployment right away or do I need to wait until the severance ends? does the severance effect the amount of unemployment money amount I will receive?

    • Firstly, please apply when the payout ends. Yes, the severance pay will have a say when you apply for UI benefits.

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