New York Unemployment Weekly Claims
NY Weekly Certification Requirements
Once your claim has been approved for New York unemployment insurance benefits, you are required to submit weekly claims that verify for the state your continued eligibility for benefits and compliance with New York unemployment work search requirements. As part of this process, you’ll be asked to answer a series of questions about your work search activities, any payment you’ve earned, and whether you were offered and/or accepted suitable work during the claim period.
In order to receive benefits every week, you must continue to file for UI, this is called weekly certification or continued claim. The purpose of filing weekly claim is to let the state know that:
- You are still unemployed
- You are available, willing and physically capable of doing full time work
- You continue to meet the eligibility requirements laid down by the state
- You did not have any income during that week
You may also see this process referred to as certifying for UI benefits – because when you submit your information, you are certifying for the state of New York that the information you’re providing is accurate and complete. This is generally a fairly simple process, especially if you’re diligent about documenting your activities throughout the certification period. You just need to ensure that you’re providing complete and accurate information. Knowingly providing erroneous information in your weekly claims constitutes NY unemployment fraud.
When to file your weekly NY unemployment claim
For weekly certification purposes, a week begins on Monday and ends on Sunday. It’s typical for claimants to submit their weekly claims on Sundays for the week ending that day. However, you have until the following Saturday to submit your claim for the previous week. Generally, the sooner you submit your weekly claim, the sooner you can expect to receive your benefit payment.
One thing it’s important to be mindful of is that in the state of New York, your first week of unemployment is considered an unpaid “waiting week.” But that doesn’t mean you’re off the hook for filing a weekly claim during that week. You are required to file a claim for your waiting week, and doing so establishes documentation that your waiting week has been fulfilled. This New York unemployment calculator can help give you a good idea of what your weekly unemployment benefit amount should be.
How to file your weekly claim in New York
The state of New York recommends that you file weekly benefits claims through its online service, which is the quickest and easiest way to do so. You may submit your claim at www.labor.ny.gov/signin, using the NY.gov account you set up. Setting up this NY.gov account also allows you to check the status of your claim, change your address or other personal information, register for direct deposit, change your tax withholdings, and more.
In some cases, you may receive your NY UI benefits payment more quickly if you submit your weekly benefits claim online. But if online submission isn’t available to you, you also may call 888-581-5812 to submit your claim through New York’s Tel-Service platform.
Those who are deaf or hard of hearing also may submit phone claims by calling a relay operator at 800-662-1220, and those who require video relay services may contact a relay operator and ask them to call 888-783-1370.
Sample unemployment certification questions
The process of submitting your weekly benefits claim includes answering a series of questions about your work search and earnings activity for the week you’re certifying. This process is vital for maintaining New York unemployment eligibility.
Here’s one important thing to remember: Listen to or read each question carefully and think about your answer before submitting. When you answer these questions, you are legally certifying that the information you’re providing is accurate and complete – so don’t take your answers lightly. Your responses will be cross-referenced against information provided by employers and federal agencies. It’s important to make sure you’re providing the most accurate information available to you.
Knowingly providing false information in your weekly benefits claim constitutes unemployment fraud, which carries stiff penalties, including having to pay monetary penalties and having your unemployment benefits cut off.
Below are some of the kinds of questions you can expect when you are certifying your weekly claim:
What days, if any, did you work during the week of (dates)?
It’s perfectly acceptable to collect partial unemployment benefits in New York while also augmenting your income through part-time or contract work. But you must report that work activity for the state to confirm that you’re still eligible for unemployment benefits, along with how much your payment for the week should be reduced based on the work you completed.
The New York State Department of Labor uses an hours-worked approach to determine how your work affects your benefit payment. For example, if you worked less than four hours per week, your weekly benefit rate won’t be affected. If you worked five to 10 hours, your payment will be reduced by 25%, and if you work more than 30 hours, you will not receive a benefit payment for that week.
Please note that the NYS Department of Labor defines work as any activity performed for an organization or individual. This can include self-employment or freelance work, even if you weren’t paid for it.
How many days were you NOT ready, willing and able to accept suitable work?
If you were not available to work at any point during your certification week, you are required to say so. You should report any days during which you were not ready to begin work immediately.
Did you refuse any job offers during the weekly claim period?
If you were offered suitable employment and turned it down, you will report it here. Knowing that you refused an offer for work substantially weakens your claim – the NYS Department of Labor likely will re-evaluate your claim to determine whether you are still eligible for unemployment benefits.
Excluding earnings from self-employment, during the weekly claim period, did you earn more than $504 in wages?
This is an important question because $504 is the maximum weekly benefit in New York – if you earned more than this amount through work you completed during the certification period, you will not receive a benefits check for that week. For this question, you may exclude any payment you received through self-employment.
Have you returned to work?
If you accepted a job offer and returned to work during the weekly claim period, you should let the New York State Department of Labor know immediately. You should answer this question with accurate information and you should not claim unemployment benefits for any day you worked, even if you haven’t been paid yet.