Kentucky Unemployment Application
How To Apply for Kentucky Unemployment Benefits
You can file your initial claim either online or by telephone.
CALL: (877) 369-5984 or (502) 875-0442.
If you’ve lost work through no fault of your own, you may qualify for unemployment insurance benefits in Kentucky. Before you start the process, it’s important to understand the eligibility criteria and how they apply to your specific case. Having a good understanding of Kentucky unemployment requirements, and gathering all of your documentation in advance, can help set you up for success when applying for Kentucky unemployment benefits.
Before You Apply
Before you submit your Kentucky unemployment benefits claim, it’s important to make sure you’ve collected all the proper documentation in advance. First, you’ll need to make sure you have appropriate personal documentation – this includes your Social Security number or alien registration number, your birthdate, complete mailing address, and a valid telephone number.
You will also need to provide information about your former employer. This may include the full name, address, and telephone number of the former employer, plus your dates of employment and the reason you no longer work with this employer.
Some claimants may need supplemental documentation. For example, if you worked in multiple states, you’ll need to be prepared to list those. You also should be prepared to provide the name and complete address for any temp agency you may have worked with, plus the name and complete contact information for any agency of the federal government for which you have completed work.
You’ll also need to provide a copy of your Standard Form 8 and Standard Form 50 if you previously held a government agency position. And if you have separated from the military, you should have on-hand a copy of your DD214 form. Finally, you should be prepared to provide the contractor name if you are affiliated with a skilled trade union.
Apply by Phone
If you are exempt from any work search requirement related to your UI benefits, you may claim your weekly benefit amount over the phone. To do so, you’ll need to call 877-369-5984 and, using a touchtone phone, claim your benefit weeks. It’s important to use a touchtone phone rather than a wireless or mobile phone in order for your responses to be recorded accurately.
You may access the state of Kentucky’s Voice Response Unit Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
You’ll need to make sure you have your Social Security number, your PIN, the date you returned to work if that is your situation, the number of hours (if any) that you worked during the benefit week, and the amount of wages you earned for that work. You’ll need to submit all of this information over the phone to qualify for your UI benefits for that particular period. If at any point during a call via the VRU system you are asked to report to your local Kentucky unemployment services office, you must do so before your UI benefits for those weeks will be released.
Unemployment Insurance claimants who do not have access to the internet or who speak Spanish can call 502-875-0442 Monday through Friday between 7:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m., Eastern Time, to file their initial or reopen claims by telephone. This is not a toll-free number.
If you have Unemployment Insurance questions, you can call at 502-564-2900.
To file a claim, you will need:
- Your Social Security number
- Your complete mailing address
- Name, address, and phone number for each of your employers over the last 18 months
- The exact day you began work at each job
- The last day you worked at each job
Once you file your initial claim, you’ll be required to wait 15 days before you can submit a weekly claim via the VRU system. Your first phone call will certify your information for both weeks you would like to claim.
It’s important to refrain from calling the system twice in one day – unless you experienced a technical issue and were advised by the system to call back later. If you call the VRU system more than one time per day, it will flag your request as a duplicate. You will receive a call from your local office to recertify and your benefits payment may be delayed.
Overall, it’s important to follow the system’s instructions carefully and accurately to make sure your UI benefits can be processed as quickly as possible. If you hang up your phone before being prompted to do so by the system, your claim will not process and you will not receive your benefits payment for that period.
Individuals may file for unemployment benefits through this link.
The Kentucky UI claims portal is accessible for filing an unemployment claim or requesting your bi-weekly check on-line. The system is available Monday through Friday from 7:00 am until 7:00 pm and Sunday from 10:00 am until 9:00 pm Eastern Time.
The state of Kentucky makes it extremely quick and easy to apply for unemployment online. Once you’ve verified your identity through ID.me, you can log into the state unemployment portal to submit your initial unemployment claim. The system will prompt you to answer questions about your employment history and to upload appropriate documentation where necessary. If you’ve collected all the appropriate information and documentation we’ve recommended, you should have no issue submitting your claim.
In addition to filing your claim, you also can submit your regular biweekly claim certifications via the same online portal. You may make other changes to your UI benefits account as well, including resetting your PIN, updating your mailing address, or changing the method by which you’d like to receive your unemployment compensation.
Verify Your Identity with ID.me
ID.me is an independent identity verification platform that the state of Kentucky uses to verify the identity of any applicant for Kentucky unemployment benefits. Partnering with ID.me helps the state reduce the likelihood of Kentucky unemployment fraud, along with helping ensure the accuracy and validity of every Kentucky unemployment benefits claim.
Before you can submit a claim for Kentucky unemployment benefits, you must go through ID.me verification – and once it’s established, you can use your ID.me credentials on a wide variety of login platforms for both state and federal government programs. Please note that even if you choose to apply for UI benefits over the phone, you still must verify your identity through ID.me before your application can be submitted. ID.me uses bank-level security infrastructure and protocols to protect your data and never shares your data without your permission. ID.me also employs documented, federally compliant practices for protecting your personal information.
The ID.me verification process includes your uploading two forms of identification. One must be a valid photo ID, like a driver’s license, state identification card, or U.S. passport. Additional accepted IDs include a U.S. military card or military dependent card, a permanent resident card, a certificate of citizenship or naturalization, an employment verification document, or a foreign passport. In order to be considered acceptable, your photo identification must clearly state your full name and your date of birth, in addition to your photograph. Your photo ID also must be valid – an expired photo ID will not be accepted. To submit your photo ID, simply hold it beside your face and snap a selfie, then upload it to the ID.me platform.
Your second form of identification may include anything from a birth certificate or pay stub to a mortgage statement or utility bill. But please note that you will not be allowed to submit a Social Security card as your second form of identification. Additional items considered suitable include a W-2 form, a telephone, internet, or cable bill, a bank statement, or a property tax bill. You also may submit a lease or rental agreement, a registration for a P.O. box, a Social Security statement, or other official documentation from the Social Security Administration, including a notice of Social Security number assignment or report of confidential Social Security information.
In some cases, you may be asked to participate in a short video call to chat with an ID.me representative and answer questions about yourself to help verify your identity. In most cases, these calls can be completed in no more than 15 minutes.
After You Apply for Benefits
Once you’ve submitted your initial claim for UI benefits, you will receive a determination from the Kentucky office of unemployment insurance. The day after your claim is submitted, it will be taken under review and a determination will be made about your eligibility as soon as possible.
At this point, all you can do is wait and be ready to respond if someone from the state reaches out with questions about your application. Within 3-12 days, you should receive a letter that outlines your unemployment eligibility status and conveys the weekly benefit amount you should expect to receive. You can use the Kentucky unemployment calculator to make sure the unemployment compensation amount in your determination letter is correct.
After you receive confirmation of your Kentucky unemployment eligibility, you may begin submitting regular weekly claims and work search information for unemployment benefits. Each claimant must serve a one-week waiting period per each benefit year. The waiting week will always be the first payable week after your claim has been approved. You will then request unemployment compensation for a two-week period.
Once you’ve submitted your first weekly claim, you should receive your first UI benefits payment – if you elected to receive your unemployment benefits by direct deposit, you should see the funds in your account almost immediately, and if you’ve elected to receive a benefits check, you should see it within two to five days of your weekly claim being accepted.
Want to know about how much Kentucky unemployment you will receive? —–>Calculate your benefits here
Unemployed in Kentucky? ——>Check your eligibility for unemployment benefits