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  • benefits calculator
  • apply for benefits
State: Pennsylvania (PA)
Phone Number:Please contact 888-255-4728. Each UC service center is open from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Mondays are traditionally a heavy call day. Please note - If your SSN ends in an odd number — 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 — please call the service center for assistance on Monday. If your SSN ends in an even number — 0, 2, 4, 6, 8 — please call on Tuesday. The UC service centers will continue to accept calls from claimants with any SSN on Thursdays and Fridays.
Major Towns:Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Allentown, Erie, Reading, Bethlehem, Scranton, Lancaster, and Levittown
Current Unemploymnet Rate in Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Unemployment Questions

I was told by my employer that I may be laid off intermittently during the next several months. Am I eligible for unemployment benefits?

To be eligible for UC benefits, you must meet certain requirements-

  • You must be financially eligible.
  • You must have a qualifying separation from employment.
  • You must continuously maintain your eligibility for benefits, by satisfying the UC laws.

If your hours of work have been reduced or you otherwise continue to work less than your normal full-time work week, you may be eligible for partial benefits.

What happens after I’ve applied for UI benefits?

You will receive a total of three mailers from the PA Department of Labor after applying for UI benefits. The first mail will contain an official Notice of Financial Determination. The second mail will contain a Claim Confirmation Letter (which is form UC-360) and a PIN (Personal Identification Number) for PAT, filing over the telephone. The third mailer will have a printed copy of PA UC Handbook which is sent to you within a span of 10 days after you’ve applied for UI Benefits.

What are the registration requirements after I file my application for benefits?

You must register for employment search services with the Pennsylvania CareerLink® system within 30 days after you file your application for benefits. If you are not already registered, create a Keystone ID and Password, using your complete Social Security number. Use your Keystone ID and Password to login and to update relevant information.

I am currently in another state, do the registration requirements affect me?

Yes. You must register for employment search services in your local labor market in that state within thirty days after your Pennsylvania application for benefits is filed, but you must also register in the Pennsylvania CareerLink® system by the same deadline.

How do I request to receive my benefits by debit card?

You do not need to sign up to receive your payments via debit card. If you do not have direct deposit, a debit card will be mailed to you automatically after you have been determined financially eligible for benefits.

If I run out of unemployment compensation benefits, would I qualify for extended benefits?

No, Pennsylvania is not currently in an Extended Benefit period. Extended benefits are only applicable during an Extended Benefit period. Under the Extended Benefit period, it is payable only if the qualified individual has exhausted the regular benefits under the Pennsylvania UC Law.

What is the PAT number and what are its operational hours for filing a teleclaim?

PAT Toll-Free number is 888-255-4728 and the operational hours are from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Sunday, and 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Monday through Friday. If the number is busy, hang up and try again after sometime.

Will receiving a pension make me ineligible for UC benefits?

When filing for unemployment compensation (UC) benefits, you are required to report all pensions, including retirement, retired pay, annuities or other similar periodic payments and lump-sum pension payments. Pension and retirement payments are deducted from UC benefits if a base year employer maintained or contributed to the pension plan and if the base year employment affected your eligibility for, or increased the amount of, the pension. If the base year employer alone contributed to the pension, 100 percent of the prorated, weekly amount of the pension is deductible. If you contributed in any amount to the pension, 50 percent of the prorated, weekly pension amount is deductible. Pensions are deductible from weekly benefits on a dollar-for-dollar basis. The partial benefit credit is not applicable.

A lump-sum pension payment is not deducted from UC, unless you had the option of taking a monthly pension. In addition, a lump-sum pension is not deductible if you "roll over" the lump sum into an eligible retirement plan such as an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) within 60 days of receipt.

Social Security and Railroad Retirement pensions are not deducted from UC benefit payments.

May I collect UC benefits while attending school?

You may not be eligible for UC benefits if you quit your job to enroll in an academic credit training program. There is no requirement that you must be available for full-time or permanent work. Your work history can be full-time, part-time, or seasonal. However, you must not refuse suitable work when offered. You may also be ineligible if you refuse a referral to a job opportunity.

What is the PREP and RESEA program and why must I attend?

The Profile Reemployment Program (PREP) and Reemployment Services and Eligibility Assessment (RESEA) Program are Pennsylvania’s version of the federally mandated Worker Profiling and Reemployment Service system. PREP and RESEA are designed to identify claimants who are most likely to exhaust unemployment compensation (UC) benefits and may need assistance to find a new job.

You may be ineligible for benefits for any week in which you fail to participate in reemployment services to which you have been referred through PREP and RESEA. If selected, you must participate in these mandatory programs unless there is justifiable reason for your failure to participate.

Questions & Answers

275 thoughts on “Pennsylvania Unemployment Benefits”

  1. As a W2 worker for a furniture moving company, my hours can vary greatly week by week. Some weeks I may work 60+ hrs, some weeks during the slower season, I may only work 10 hrs. Say I have a busy week 1… 50 hrs, then a slow week 2… 10 hours, then busy week 3… 60 hours. Am I eligible to collect partial unemployment for the slow Week 2? Even though the three week average is 40 hrs per week? Thank you!

    1. Ryan,

      Firstly, we need to ascertain if your employer remits Unemployment Taxes into the system on the basis of which you can be eligible to claim partial UI benefits. Please check with your HR team.

      1. Sam, I was not asking how many weeks of employment you can get (26), rather I was asking the time frame the UC center has to make a decision after you file a claim for benefits? How many days does employer have to respond to UC Service Center’s request for information?

        1. Margaret,

          Thank you for the clarification. I am not sure of the timelines employers’ are allowed to respond. Perhaps, a phone call to the Unemployment Office might help you access the right information.

  2. I gave 2 weeks notice to my last job because I was moving to Florida. And I try to contact the uc services to explain me about my appeals. Any number or place that I can reach to answer my questions here in Florida?

  3. we are a retired military family and draw a monthly pension. My husband recently lost his job and is filing for UC. My question is does PA UC take dollar for dollar out of the UC that he is to receive?

  4. My husband was terminated from his job on August 2nd and has been unable to access a computer or phone to try to file for unemployment. When is the latest he can file and would I be able to file for him if he is unable to file himself?

    1. Jessica,

      If your husband was terminated due to involuntary reasons, he can claim UI benefits. With regard to your question, I suggest you call the Unemployment Office in your state to inquire about filing on his behalf.

  5. My company has eliminated my position within the company. They are giving me a small severance package ( $1547 plus $2000 towards healthcare benefits ). How will this effect my UE benefits. Right now I am illegible for 393 a week.
    Thank You

    1. Elaine,

      Please wait until the severance payout ends. You can apply towards the end of it. The actual weekly benefit amount depends on multiple inputs. Please call the Unemployment Office for additional info.

  6. I am currently making $23/hr as a contractor and my assignment will end in four weeks. They are offering me another position for $16/hr. Do I have to take the lower paying position? If I don’t, can I collect UI?

    1. Janis,

      Contract workers are generally not eligible since employers’ do not remit Unemployment Taxes. Please call the Unemployment Office for clarification.

  7. I recently got hired full time while I was waiting on UC , I work close to 30 hours a week maybe less which sounds like part time , can I still collect UC benefits ? I reported the income and was approved for partial payment which is fine w me as long as I’m not braking any UC law, please advise kindly? Just want to make sure that is ok to collect. Thanks

    1. Yes, you should be able to collect partial UI benefits for the hours lost. Please consider applying for the lost hours until full-time employment is restored.

  8. I received a letter 07/12/18 saying that i was financially eligible for unemployment and i got the reliacard the same day but i still haven’t received a payment yet, and online it says i haven’t been issued one yet either. Should I be expecting one soon or has something gone wrong?

    1. Hayley,

      Have you been making a weekly claim by phone/online? You will only receive weekly payments if you do so. Please call the Claims Center for further details.

  9. I work full time now, I asked to work part time because my husband is having health issues and can not watch my son. They will not give me the part time hours. Told me to use FMLA. I don’t want to use it. Our company policy is if we are an employee, we can not work any where else. I can’t be on FMLA and work part-time somewhere else. I would have to quit to be able to work part-time somewhere. Can I quit and file unemployment? I really do not know what to do.

    1. Kate,

      Unfortunately, personal reasons are not generally not considered. Please call the Unemployment Office for clarification before making a decision.

    1. Leo,

      You may not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons. Please call the Unemployment Office for clarification.

  10. I applied on 1/22. I received a letter dated 2/15 saying that I was eligible to receive benefits. the first payment has been made my account 3/5/18, but it only for the two most recent weeks. I know there is a waiting week. I was expecting to be paid for 5/6 weeks for which I filed claims. Why was I only [aid for two?

  11. Got notice saying attendance is mandatory at resea meeting..I belong to the painters Union and can only get my jobs through Union hiring hall.. I thought my attendance is not required because of this condition….can anyone help ty

  12. I filed my claim in Feb 2017…my salary at my new job was not included and I make 3 times as much. Am I able to cancel my claim and file an initial claim in April, changing my base year and including my new salary?

    1. Mike,

      Short-term disability will be a bearing on unemployment insurance claims. For specific details, please contact the unemployment office.

  13. I have been on short term disability due to back surgeries for the past 4 months. I have been at my job for 9+ years. I got a phone call today stating that since my short term disability is now changing over to long term disability he is being terminated. Can I file for unemployment benefits until my long term disability gets approved and begins? I need to pay bills and was not expecting this. any help is appreciated 🙂

    1. David,

      You may not be eligible since unemployment insurance is only extended to those who become unemployed due to involuntary reasons. Please call the Unemployment Office for further details.

      Hope you get well soon!

  14. I am working as a substitute teacher now after not working and getting unemployment from Feb-June 2016 will I be eligible for benefits after the school year is over?

  15. I work in a retail corp. I am a key carrying supervisor. I deal with western union transaction. A fraudulent transaction was done using my I’d and password on a day I was not on the clock.. the person who is responsible for the transaction was to be set up by the HR office. Because she wasn’t and we were us I allowed 2 people to use my information to do there job. So I was terminated because of a security violation. Am I eligible for unemployment

    1. Joann,

      You should be able to claim since it looks like it’s not your fault. Please make sure to keep supporting documents handy in case of a dispute.

  16. I have a 2 weeks notice to my employer for office politics and being harassed. I did break several rules that I was comfusdd about. The office was a toxic environment and started to affect my health. I only worked 2 more into my documented 2 week notice and was terminated. Am I eligible for benefits?

    1. Sue,

      Your employer may raise a dispute when you file. If you’re able to prove your innocence with documentary evidence, you can be eligible.

  17. I have filed a claim over 6 weeks ago and it will not let me file a biweekly or let me call the 888 313 7284 always busy. What is going on cant pay my bills or get food.

  18. i am working the same job for 11 years but my boss is at me every day sometimes insulting and i cant take it anymore. can i quit and collect checks until i find something else?

    1. You can be eligible to quit under hostile working conditions and draw UI benefits.

      However, it can be considered voluntary separation. Please call the Unemployment Office to inquire about the limitations.

  19. Still employed but due to lack of work, hours, and pay, I need to file for Partial Unemployment. Doing this online, there is a section where the questions don’t fit my needs as it asks “What is the reason you are no longer employed?” The next question: “Yes or No, Were you told by your employer that you would be recalled to your job?” If Yes, I need to enter a date. The lack of 40 work hours will go on for awhile. How can I receive partial benefits while still employed?

    1. Partial UI benefits are available for workers who lose hours. Please call the Claims Center to find out how these questions can be answered.

  20. Looking for experienced middle aged male to do temporary field work. person would travel to site with one or two other field technicians. Person must be mechanically inclined and able to work with power tools such as a concrete core drill, able to lift up to 50 lbs

  21. I work a full time and a part time job. What if you are laid off from your full time job, how will that affect your claim with still working the part time job?

    1. You will be probably asked to declare the income from the part-time job. Please make sure to let them know about your part-time job when you file.

  22. If your claim has been appealed twice by the employer and you have won both appeals does UC pay you back pay? Initial claim was filed in January.

    1. They should if you were asked to file regularly during the disputed weeks.

      Please speak to the Claims Center for an update.

    1. If the reason is involuntary, you should be able to claim until you’re hired back.

      Please call the Unemployment Office for clarification.

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