New York Unemployment Eligibility
New York Unemployment Eligibility Calculator
Are you willing and able to work?
How did you lose your previous job?
Have you been affected by coronavirus?
Were you offered telework with pay by your employer?
Were you fired for no fault of your own?
Did you quit your last job due to unsafe working conditions, not being paid, discrimination and / or health and safety risks?
Do you have paid medical leave?
Do you have a family member you are caring for?
You May Be Eligible
You May Not Be Eligible
Do you have paid family leave?
You May Be Eligible
You May Not Be Eligible
There are two categories of eligibility criteria for UI benefits. They are:
- Monetary eligibility
- Non-monetary eligibility
- Claimant must have earned minimum wages during base period
- This means that claimants must have worked for at least 2 out of 4 quarters of the base period
- A total of $2,200 or more must be earned by the claimant during the base period
- Total wages earned by the applicant during the base period must be 1.5 times the highest quarter earnings
To determine whether a claimant meets monetary eligibility requirements, New York state will verify that they earned sufficient wages during what’s known as your base period. This base period consists of the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters before the quarter in which you apply for unemployment benefits. A claimant must have worked during at least two calendar quarters included in the base period.
For claims filed in 2023, a claimant must have earned at least $3,100 during the base period to be eligible.
- Claimant must have lost his/her job due to no mistake of theirs
- Should have worked minimum hours during the base period
- Claimants should be available, willing and physically capable of doing full time work
- Applicants should actively seek new job opportunities
New York state also considers non-monetary eligibility requirements when reviewing your unemployment claim. To be eligible for UI benefits in New York, a claimant must show that they’ve worked in New York state during the last 18 months and that they lost work due to no fault of their own. This typically is the case with a layoff or reduction in force, and also in cases where companies are restructured and positions are eliminated.
In some cases, a claimant may be eligible for New York unemployment compensation if they quit a job for good cause. To show that you quit for good cause, you must provide documentation that your workplace had become so toxic or dangerous to either your physical or mental health that you had no choice but to quit. If you claim that you quit for good cause, remember that your former employer will be consulted and may refute your version of the story. This is where having good documentation is key.
Other non-monetary eligibility criteria include being ready, able and willing to work as soon as suitable employment is offered to you. This means that you must be physically and mentally healthy enough to work and that you have things like child care and/or transportation covered to be able to work immediately. In addition, you will also be required to actively search for employment while you collect unemployment insurance benefits. You’ll need to provide information about your New York unemployment work search activities each week as part of the certification process for receiving your weekly benefits.
Ongoing Eligibility Requirements
For each week that you receive unemployment insurance benefits, you are required to submit a New York unemployment weekly certification. As part of this process, you’ll be asked a series of questions about your compliance with New York unemployment work search activities.
This entails participating in at least three work search activities per week, which may include anything from submitting resumes and completing job applications to meeting with a career counselor and interviewing for potential positions.
Some claimants may be required to attend mandatory meetings with a career counselor at a NY Career Center. If this requirement applies to you, you will be notified of your appointment dates and times. You also must certify that you remain unemployed and eligible for unemployment compensation when you complete each weekly claim.
If you performed any part time work or freelance work during a particular week, you will be asked to report how much you worked. You can still receive unemployment benefits, even while working part-time, but your weekly benefit amount will be reduced to account for the wages you earned during that week.
Quitting a Job for Good Cause
Will I be eligible for UI if I was laid off from work?
In some cases, you may voluntarily quit your job, yet still be eligible for New York unemployment benefits. If you can show that you quit for good cause, you may be able to collect unemployment assistance. In New York, “good cause” for quitting your job typically means showing that your previous employer had created a working environment that was unsafe, unhealthful or dangerous – to either your physical or your mental health. In other words, your reason for quitting must be so compelling that it’s easy to conclude that you had no other choice but to quit.
Keep in mind that the burden of proof is on you, as the employee, to prove that your situation gave you good cause for separating from employment.
In some cases, there are legitimate reasons to quit that are not the fault of your employer. For example, you can quit with good cause if you are a victim of domestic violence, and you quit your job to move away from a violent partner. Or if you are a military spouse and that spouse is transferred, you can remain eligible for unemployment benefits if you must quit your job to move with your spouse.
If I voluntarily quit my job, will I qualify for UI?
These situations are reviewed on a case-by-case basis, so you will need to complete a questionnaire outlining the conditions of your quitting your job, and you’ll be assigned to a claims examiner, who also may interview you. The examiner will make a determination about whether your job separation was for good cause.
Reasons for UI Disqualifications
Can I collect UI benefits if I was fired?
You could be found ineligible for New York unemployment benefits for several reasons, all related to the state’s monetary and non-monetary eligibility criteria. For example, your unemployment claim might be denied if you didn’t earn enough money during the base period to qualify.
You can also be found ineligible if you continue working part-time and don’t report that work activity, or if you fail to meet New York unemployment work search requirements. Other reasons for UI disqualification include failing to appear for appointments or respond to New York Department of Labor outreach, not being able or available to work, refusing work when it is offered to you, and criminal misconduct.
What to do if your claim is denied
If your claim for New York unemployment insurance benefits is denied, you do have options. When you receive your determination letter, you can file a New York unemployment appeal within 30 days of receiving that notice. At that point, you will be scheduled for a hearing before an administrative law judge, where you may provide more information about your situation.
When you receive the administrative law judge’s determination, you may further appeal to the New York Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board if you still disagree with the decision. After the appeal board reviews your claim, your final course of appeal is to the Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court. At this stage, you should enlist the help of an experienced employment lawyer.