Six Steps to Claim Unemployment Benefits

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.

Steps to Claim Unemployment Benefits

How to get your unemployment benefits

Step 1

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.

Still not clear? Use our online tool to check if you qualify for unemployment benefits.

Once you have made sure that you indeed passed these criteria, you can proceed to step 2.

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.

You can use our online unemployment calculator to get an estimate of weekly benefits amount.

In general, the amount you receive will be approximately half for the average weekly wage you earned during the base period.

Step 3

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.

Step 4

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.

Step 5

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!

Step 6

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!

  1. I have been working as an hourly employee for the last 4 months. Currently the board of the nonprofit agency came to me and told me that I had to file a 1099 or go to part time or find a new job. I have a scheduled time that I report to work. What are the laws here in Florida about who can receive a 1099

  2. I am unemployed and currently going to a community college. How can I apply for federal assistance?

    1. Carol,

      If you’re able and available for full-time employment, you can directly go to the website of the Unemployment Office and apply.

  3. I have worked in AZ since March 2016. However, I moved lived and worked for my employer in CA since 08/02/1982. Can I apply for Cali unemployment benefits?

    1. Robert,

      You should be applying from the state where your employment was based. Employers generally remit unemployment taxes to the state where the employee is based.

  4. I have been trying for over a month to file and I still do not seem to be able to do it, but I finally got to the correct place, I think.

  5. Cumberland NJ Unemployment Center kept me on hold for 2 hours; I finally had someone answer my call, after providing my information and question regarding the status of my NJ Unemployment Claim the representative disconnected my call.

  6. Excellent list of things to help execute better. Even taking 3 or 4 of these that one does not currently utilize could help immensely.

    1. How did you calculate the total weekly Illinois benefit of $1495? Also, why isn’t Washington and Minnesota listed in your top 5 states with the highest paid unemployment insurance compensation?

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