The Unemployment Insurance in Oregon is designed to compensate a part of the wages lost by the applicants for no fault of their own. You may apply for unemployment benefits if you were laid off from work or if your working hours.
Know more about the Unemployment Insurance (UI) policy in the state of Oregon and all the important information you need to know while filing for unemployment benefits.
Eligibility To Apply For UI Benefits In Oregon
To be eligible to receive unemployment benefits in the state of Oregon, you must display qualifications in wages earned during the base period, the reason for separating from the previous organization and the manner in which eligibility is maintained throughout the benefit period.
In order to gain monetary eligibility in Oregon, you must have earned a sufficient amount of wages in the base period.
A base period is a one year period divided into the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters. The calculation of the base period will depend on the date on which you file for unemployment benefits.
Also, a quarter is a three-month period, wherein a base-year will consist of four completed calendar quarters. A calendar quarter usually ends on March 31, June 30, September 30, or December 31.
To be qualified for unemployment benefits in Oregon, the following conditions must be met:
You must have received a minimum of $1000 in subject wages during the base period. Subject wages are the earnings of the applicant on which your employer has paid UI taxes
The total wages earned during the base period must be at least 1.5 times more than the wages earned during the quarter in which you earned the highest amount of wages
You worked for a minimum of 500 hours and received subject wages in your previous job.
The state of Oregon uses two approaches to calculate wages to find out if you are eligible for benefits or not. As per the standard base period, the wages you earned during the first four of the last five calendar quarters will be considered.
If you do not meet the requirements using the standard base period, your wages will automatically be calculated using the alternative base period. In this, the wages you earned in the previous four calendar quarters from the date of your application for benefits will be considered for qualification.
In the state of Oregon, the weekly benefit amount will be 1.25% of the total base year gross income you earned. The Weekly Benefit Amount (WBA), however, will not exceed the minimum and maximum limit set by the authorities. The maximum WBA provided in Oregon is $538, and the minimum WBA is $126.
It is important for the applicants to promptly disclose the reason for separating from the previous organization. The laws in Oregon dictate that you will only be eligible for unemployment benefits if you lost your previous job due to no fault of your own.
The state describes various types of work separations to help define the nature of job-separation clearly:
Lack of Work: You were laid-off from your employer due to a shortage of work, and that the employer had no work to give you. This may arise due to the closure of business, downsizing the staff, or temporary shutdown due to maintenance.
Leave of Absence: You are considered to be on a leave of absence if your employer is given you some time away from work, such as maternity leave, medical leave, or leaves granted for any other personal reasons.
Voluntary Leaving Work:You voluntarily decide to part ways from your previous employer without any good cause. This implies that there was no shortage or stoppage of work and that you were separated from work based on your own volition.
You were terminated or discharged from work if the employer did not face shortage or stoppage of work, but yet wouldn’t allow you to continue to work in your organization.
The primary rule in Oregon is that you must not have lost your job as a result of your own fault, and there must be a good cause attributable to the employer. Failing to meet this requirement may lead to your candidature for UI benefits being disqualified.
Also, providing false or misleading information regarding job-separation may lead to the stoppage of the benefits to you, and you may also have to pay the benefits received with interest and penalty. The state of Oregon considers such misleading attempts as a fraud.
You will gain eligibility for Oregon unemployment benefits once you establish that you’ve earned the stipulated amount of wages in the base period and you lost your last job for no fault of your own. Receiving your weekly benefit amount, however, will depend on you fulfilling the following conditions:
You must be physically and mentally able to work throughout the benefit period
You must be available for work in the entire duration of the benefit period. If at any time you become unavailable for work, you must intimate the concerned department promptly
You should be actively seeking employment opportunities
You must consult at least five prospective employers each week as a part of the job-search requirement
You must submit a report on the job-search requirement exercise, whereby you inform about – date of contact, name of the company, contact details of the company, online job posting ID number (if applicable), type of work applied for, mode of contact (phone, email, online resume submission etc.), and the result of the contact
You must not reject any job offers made to you with a ‘good cause’. You must explain the cause to the concerned department, which will make a decision if the reason for rejection is good or not
You must submit all this information every week when you apply for weekly benefits. Failure to submit any of the necessary documents will lead to discontinuation of the benefit amount. The concerned department will also conduct audits to verify if your documents and explanations are genuine. If it is found that you’ve submitted false or misleading information, you will face consequences ranging from non-payment of benefits to facing fraud charges.
To apply for unemployment benefits in Oregon, you must possess the following documents:
A valid social security number
A driving license or any other ID provided by the state
Recent paystubs received from your last employer during the base period to determine your WBA
Name and contact details of your previous organization and your previous employer
SF08 and SF50 along with your Federal Employee Identification Number if you were a federal employee
DD-214 along with the start date and end date of employment if you were ex-military personnel
You may apply for benefits in Oregon through the following means:
Claiming for benefits on the Online Claims System is the most convenient way in the state of Oregon. This online portal not only allows you to claim for weekly benefits but also provides other services.
You can restart a previous claim, update your address, change/reset the PIN, view up to five years of your 1099G forms, and pay the overpayments if due using the Online Claims System. The Online Claims System is functional on all the seven days of the week. The service is available round the clock, except from 12:30 AM to 2:00 AM every day due to system maintenance.
If you are looking for another way to apply for benefits, you may do so by placing a phone call to connect with the Weekly Claim Line.
You may contact Weekly Claim Line centers that are closer to you from the following:
Once you submit your application, you will receive The Wage and Potential Benefit Report through the mail. You must go through the document carefully and verify all the information provided in the document.
If there are any discrepancies in the report’s information, instructions regarding rectifying the mistake will be given within the form, which you will be expected to follow.
The report will also contain Customer Identification Number (CID), which is a unique number assigned to you. This number will be used on all the documents concerning your application to safeguard your identity. You will need CID while using both online and telephonic services.
You will also be asked to create a four-digit Personal Identification Number (PIN) at the time you file a claim application. You will need to sue the PIN when you make use of any automated systems.
The Unemployment Insurance Benefits Calculator assists you to find out the approximate UI Benefits amount that you may receive in the state of Oregon.
Disclaimer: The estimates are good in faith and accuracy is not guaranteed. We are not liable for any loss and damages caused by using the tools on our website. This calculator is here to assist you in evaluating what you might obtain if you are entitled to receive benefits. We make no promises that the sum you receive will be equal to what the calculator illustrates.
You must be aware of certain information as they begin to receive their weekly benefits every week. Lack of information may sometimes lead you to situations where break rules inadvertently or miss opportunities that may have helped you in your career.
Overpayments and Fraud
The state of Oregon stresses on distributing the resources among the applicants fairly and without any malpractice. If you happen to receive benefits amount that wasn’t intended for you, you will be affecting the fair distribution of the funds.
When you receive a share of benefits that was not intended to you, this will be considered as an overpayment. Note that if you receive an overpayment, you are liable to pay the excessive amount back.
When you receive an overpayment, you will receive a notice from the concerned department, which will contain repayment details and your right to appeal. The notice will also contain the administrative decision ascertaining the reason for the overpayment.
Some of the reasons that can result in an overpayment:
Incorrectly reporting the wages you’ve earned during the base period
Providing a false reason for job-separation
A decision reversed by an appeal
Payments made by the department to you prior to coming across an issue with your application
Your WBA is reduced due to a correction imposed on your base period based on your base period wages
In the case of overpayment, you may choose the following ways to pay back the excessive amount in Oregon:
Interception of state and federal income tax refunds
If an applicant willfully provides false information or misrepresents facts in order to get UI benefits, it will be considered as fraud. The state of Oregon takes the cases of fraud seriously, and it will be dealt with severely, where the repercussions range from paying high penalties to facing prosecution.
Some of the examples of fraud are:
Presenting false/fake documents to gain eligibility for unemployment benefits in Oregon
Providing false information or withholding information on turning down jobs during the benefits weeks
Misquoting the wages you’ve earned during your base period
Providing false/misleading reasons for job-separations
Filing for benefits when you were not able to or available to work
Filing for benefits when you were in jail
The state offers benefits extension only when the unemployment rate is high. Visit or call the concerned authorities to know more about the current available Oregon Reemployment Assistance plans.
Job Training Assistance
The state of Oregon provides various avenues to look for jobs and apprenticeship programs to help applicants land on their feet at the earliest. The state also provides opportunities for the applicants to improve their skill sets through various training programs to make them better in their area of expertise.
WorkSource Oregon (WSO) is a network of local and state service providers which helps those who are looking for jobs by helping them find appropriate jobs or by providing training services.
The WorkSource Oregon does not charge any fee and all services are provided free of cost. Some of the services provided by WSO are:
WSO provides assistance for military veterans
WSO provides resume and cover letter resources
You can also prepare for future interviews in a WSO center
You can receive regularly updated job-opening information
WSO provides skill and career assessment services
You can seek help with WSO if you lost your job due to foreign trade
The centers also provide specialized services for migrant workers, seasonal workers, and people with disabilities
You can also access materials such as books, self-help guides, and videos relating to career building activities
The WSO center also hosts local training providers, which includes skill building and job training
The state of Oregon also provides services such as the Career Information System (CIS), which allows you to take assessments to let you know what occupation suits you best.
The state of Oregon also provides an online tool called iMatchSkills, wherein you can use this tool to find out which potential occupation will suit you best. The tool uses your skills and work history to determine what kind of job will be more suitable for you.
Q. How do I get my Personal Identification Number (PIN)?
You can select a Personal Identification Number (PIN) when you first submit your initial unemployment application - online or by telephone. You will have to use the same PIN throughout your claim.
You will need it whenever you access the Online Claim System and to claim weekly benefits whether online or by telephone. If you forget it, you will be asked to reset the PIN. Make note that you are responsible for the security of your PIN, so do not share it with anyone whatsoever.
Q. How do I get my Claimant Identification Number (CID)?
Your Claimant Identification Number (CID) is a number assigned to you at the time you submitted the application for UI benefits in Oregon. You will need to use it on the documents sent to you by the concerned department as a way to safeguard your claim and Social Security number from identity theft.
Your CID will be asked when you intend to change your address or apply for direct deposit through the Online Claim System. The labor department will not give out your CID, even to you if you call, so please keep a record of it.
Q. What is a Waiting Week?
The Waiting Week is the first week on your claim in which you meet all eligibility requirements. You do not receive payment for your waiting week. Every unemployment account must have a Waiting Week before the unemployment department can start making benefit payments.
Q. Does retirement pay affect my benefits?
Retirement pay could reduce your benefits, make you ineligible, or have no effect at all. If you are not eligible for periodic payments, it has no effect. If an employer for whom you worked during the base year of your claim either contributed to the retirement fund or maintained it, then your retirement pay is deducted dollar for dollar.
Q. What is the procedure to start or stop tax withholding?
Applicants can choose to have state or federal taxes, both, or neither withheld from the amount they receive. They can change their withholding after filing for the claim. Tax regulations, however, require changes to tax withholding be made in writing.
Complete an Authorization for Tax Withholding, Form 1040WH, and mail your request to the Employment Department at PO Box 14135, Salem, OR 97309 or fax it to (503)-947-1335. Be sure to include your name and either Social Security number or customer ID number (CID).
Q. Can the Department reduce the benefits for child support payments?
The department can reduce the benefits for child support payments. In the event, you owe child support payments and there is a court order requiring deductions, a percentage is deducted from your benefits each week. The deductions continue until the court notifies us to stop.
Q. How is my weekly benefit amount calculated?
Your weekly benefit amount is 1.25% of the total base year gross earnings. The state of Oregon mandates that it will not be less than the minimum or more than the maximum amounts you can receive.
Q. How long do benefits last?
Your benefit year is a 52 week period that begins the first week you file. You may receive total benefits up to 26 times your weekly benefit amount. You can’t file a new Oregon claim until your benefit year is up, even if you’ve received all of your benefits.
Q. Will I be eligible for UI benefits if I started my own business?
Running your own business will stand as a direct contradiction to the condition that you must be available for work. You must report any self-employment activities to the UI Center, even if you don’t have earnings from it. Failure to report such details to the department will result in overpayment and penalties.