Ohio Unemployment Application
How to apply for Ohio unemployment benefits
CALL: 1-877- (644-6562). Telephone hours are 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Monday – Friday (except holidays).
Peak call times are Monday and Friday. For faster service call on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, or file online.
When you call, please be sure to have paper and a pencil ready. For TTY service dial toll free: 1-888-642-8203
When to apply for Ohio unemployment
If you have recently become unemployed, you can apply for Ohio unemployment benefits right away. The sooner you apply, the sooner you will begin receiving unemployment compensation.
Your Ohio unemployment claim will become effective beginning the first Sunday after you file your unemployment benefits claim. Your first payment will be processed after you receive your confirmation of eligibility determination notice and file your weekly claim.
In Ohio, unemployment benefits are retroactive, so claimants will receive a payment for every week they were eligible before applying for unemployment insurance.
Your claim will only be accepted if you meet the Ohio unemployment eligibility requirements. To qualify for traditional unemployment benefits, you must be unemployed by no fault of your own, have worked 20 weeks or longer, and have earned $315 minimum per week during your base period (four out of the past five full calendar quarters).
If you are an unemployed worker and want to apply for Ohio unemployment benefits, you have two options: apply online or over the phone.
How to apply by phone:
Please note that applying online is the quickest way to start receiving unemployment payments as soon as possible. However, it is also possible to apply for Ohio unemployment insurance over the phone.
To apply for Ohio unemployment benefits by phone, call the phone number 1-877-644-6562 or TTY 1-614-387-8408. The call center is open Monday through Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM (excluding holidays.)
An Ohio unemployment employee will answer and walk you through the application process for UI benefits. It should take about 20-25 minutes.
How to apply online:
The easiest and fastest way to apply for Ohio unemployment compensation is over the internet. To apply for Ohio unemployment insurance benefits online, follow these steps:
- Collect all the personal information and documents you need for applying (as detailed above.)
- Visit ohio.gov and click “I am an Unemployed Worker” from the web page. Then, select “Apply for Unemployment Insurance.”
- A “Release of Information” message will pop up. Read it, then click “I agree” to move on.
- Click “Register” underneath “Claimant Login.”
- Input your Social Security number once, then enter it again to confirm the number is correct. Then, click “Register.”
- You will be sent to the OH|ID login page. An OH|ID is a single online user account that gives Ohio residents access to several state services and agencies, including unemployment insurance. With an OH|ID, you can use just one username and password across all state programs, instead of having to create a new one for every individual website.
- If you have already created an OH|ID when signing up for some other state agency, you can simply log in. You will be redirected to the Ohio unemployment website after verifying your login.
- If you do not already have an OH|ID, you will need to create one. Input your email address. A 6-digit code will be sent to your email (check your spam folder.) Enter the code on the sign-up page. Then, complete the steps to register your profile. After you create your account, you will receive a confirmation email. You can then log in to OH|ID. After verifying your login, you will be redirected to the Ohio unemployment website.
- Fill out the Claimant Registration boxes if you wish to file a new unemployment claim.
- Using your Social Security number as your username and your temporary PIN, log in from the login screen.
- Select “File a New Claim for Unemployment Benefits.” Then, fill out your personal and demographic information on the next two pages.
- Answer all of the eligibility questions on the next few pages honestly and fully. If you have questions, use the help features and videos.
- Answer the questions to register for job matching to help you find suitable work. Select two occupations you would like to be matched for in your career profile.
- Choose your payment method. You can select to be paid to your bank account by direct deposit or debit card.
- Choose your correspondence preference. You can choose to receive information about your unemployment claim by mail or email.
- The final application page will ask you to certify that all information you provided is correct. Click “Agree” to submit your Ohio unemployment application.
Information needed to apply
No matter which method you use to apply for Ohio unemployment benefits, you will need to provide certain information relevant to your residence and employment history. When filling out your Ohio unemployment application, be sure to have the following information ready:
- Social Security number
- Driver’s License number (if you have one) or State ID number
- Alien Registration number and expiration date (if you are not a United States citizen)
- Your Contact Information (name, current address, email address, and phone number)
- Contact Information (name, address, email address, and phone number) for every employer you worked for in the last 6 weeks
- Dates of employment for every employer you worked for in the last 6 weeks
- Reason why you lost your job with every employer
- Name, date of birth, and Social Security number of every dependent and your spouse, if claiming dependents
- SF-8 or SF-50 form copy (if you were a federal worker)
- Form DD-214, member 4 copy (if you were in the military)
When you apply for Ohio unemployment insurance, you should also be prepared to provide copies of documents that prove your identity and personal information.
Here is a list of examples of documents you may need to have on hand:
- Photo ID: a copy of your driver’s license, passport, state ID card, military ID, student ID, or permanent residence card.
- Proof of Full Legal Name and Date of Birth: a copy of your valid driver’s license, birth certificate, United States passport, foreign passport with visa, military ID, certificate of citizenship, certificate of naturalization, or some other official legal document proving your legal name. If your current legal name differs from the name on your documents, you must also give proof of your name change, like a marriage certificate, divorce decree, or court order name change.
- Proof of Social Security Number: a copy of your Social Security card, pay stub, 1099 tax form, or W-2 tax form from the previous full year.
- Legal Presence in the United States: a copy of your birth certificate, certificate of citizenship, certificate of naturalization, United States passport, or another official legal document.
- Proof of Street Address: a copy of a pay stub, bank statement, 1099 tax form, or W-2 tax form from the previous full year.
- Proof of Bank Account: bank statement from within the past 12 months or copy of a voided check.
Information needed to verify your identity
The Ohio Department of Job and Family Service uses a Personal Identification Number (PIN) system to keep your information secure and confidential. Your PIN acts as an electronic signature to keep your identity safe.
When you first fill out an Ohio unemployment application, you will be given a temporary Personal Identi?cation Number (PIN). After this, you will be required to create a PIN that will be used for verification purposes. You will also be prompted to select a “hint” question and fill out an answer in case you lose your pin.
Be sure to write down both your PIN and the answer to your hint question. Keep them somewhere hidden and safe or store them in a secure Password Manager. Never give your PIN to anyone, not even an ODJFS employee. It is against Ohio law for anyone to use your PIN except you.
When you file your weekly claims and access claim information online or by phone, you will need to provide your PIN to verify it is really you.
After you apply
What happens after I apply for Ohio unemployment benefits?
After you submit your Ohio unemployment application, it will be sent to a processing center, based on the last 4 digits of your Social Security number. Depending on the method of correspondence you chose while applying, you will be mailed or emailed information about your unemployment claim in the form of a “New Claim Instruction Sheet.”
Sometimes you may be required to provide more information about your reason for unemployment, how many weeks you worked, or your wages. Depending on the type of additional information needed, you will get a Monetary or Eligibility Issue Affidavit.
You must follow all instructions and send the requested information by the deadline given on the affidavit or risk having your claim denied. You can submit your information by email, fax, or mail. When you send the information requested of you, be sure to include your name and Claimant ID or the last 4 digits of your Social Security number.
An unemployment worker may also call you with follow up questions regarding your unemployment claim. If they can’t reach you, they will leave a voicemail. Make sure to call back in a timely manner so that your claim will not be refused.
While you wait to get your determination notice, you should file an initial claim. This will speed up the process of receiving your first unemployment payment.
To continue receiving unemployment insurance payments, you will need to file a weekly claim every week you are unemployed or earning less than your weekly benefit amount (you can estimate your payment by using the Ohio unemployment calculator). You can file continued claims by visiting unemployment.ohio.gov and logging in to your account.
If your Ohio unemployment claim is denied and you disagree with the decision, you can file an appeal. You must submit your request in writing within 21 days of receiving your determination notice to begin the appeals process.