Pennsylvania Unemployment Benefit Questions

I am a resident of Pennsylvania, but I got laid off from a job in a different state, where should I file my claim?

If you worked in only one state during your base period, that is where you should file for UC from. However, if you worked in multiple states during your base period, you should be filing a Combined Wage Claim (CWC). CWC can be filed from any one of the states in which you worked and earned wages during your base period.

If you are unsure about where you should file your claim from, contact UC service center and place a query either through the Internet or through phone call at 1-888-313-7284.

My layoffs are intermittent or sporadic, if so, how do I apply for Unemployment Compensation?

File an initial claim by either visit a One-Stop Career Center or by visiting the website UC service center or by calling them at 1-888-313-7284. Filing online would be the fastest way. Once your initial claim is processed, you may be expected to file bi-weekly claims to get weekly benefit checks. Should you fail to file the claim, the claim will become inactive. If you get a job for a week in between, don’t file for that week. And when you face unemployment again, simply re-open your existing claim and continue with weekly filing to claim your remaining benefits.

Does severance, salary continuation or separation pay affect UC benefits?

Any severance pay, that exceed 40% of the annual wage of Pennsylvania, is deducted from the claimants UC. This holds true only if the claimants application for benefit was filed on or after Jan 1, 2012 and if the severance pay agreement between the claimant and his employer was signed on or after Jan 1, 2012.

Whatever amount is deducted from a claimant’s benefits is allocated the weeks that immediately follow his/her job separation.

131 thoughts on “Pennsylvania Unemployment Benefit Questions”

  1. Brooke says:


    I am reaching out to see what my options are for my current situation. I was laid off from my company approximately 2 weeks ago. My current salary is $57,000. I have been offered a position in order to come back and work for the company. However, the pay I am being offered now is $28,000. If I turn down this new position/salary, what are my rights for filing unemployment? Will I be denied based on the fact that a new position was offered, or am I able to deny and still receive unemployment being that I was offered a position that is $30 less than what I make a year?

    1. Sam says:


      I suggest you call the Claims Center for a detailed discussion and ascertainment of eligibility.

  2. Beverly Cintron says:

    I need verification that I am currently not receiving unemployment. How can I do that?

    1. Sam says:


      Please call the Unemployment Office (Claims Center) for more information.

  3. Beverly Cintron says:

    I left my job in order to retire early with over 20 years of service; however I now find that I have a year and 1/2 before I can start drawing on my 401K. May I put in a claim for Unemployment to gap the time I’m able to retire?

    1. Sam says:


      Please call the Unemployment Office to find out about your eligibility since UI benefits are only extended to those claimants who’re unemployed due to involuntary reasons.

  4. Elizabet says:

    I believe I have a unique situation. A co-worker that has been put in charge of the barbershop I have work in for the past 7 years and have amassed a healthy clientele, a few years ago, after coming back to work, told me that he would no longer be paying into my taxes. When I talked with his accountant he told me that it was perfectly legal for this co-worker that was put in charge of the shop, because the owner lives in another state, to change my employee status to an independent contractor to avoid paying taxes on my behalf to the IRS. This was done without my consent and I don’t know how this will affect me if I were to be dismissed from my job and have to file unemployment compensation. Can you help me with some guidance?

    1. Sam says:


      I suggest you call the Unemployment Office for specific assistance in this regard.

  5. Matt says:

    Does Your initial claim has been processed. Please file your biweekly claims as instructed mean you have been approved for unemployment?

    1. Sam says:


      I don’t think it means “approved”. Please make sure to continue filing biweekly claims and call the Claims Center to know the exact status.

  6. Jen says:

    My claim has been “processed” and I’ve been filing my biweekly claims as instructed the last two periods, but I have yet to receive compensation. Is this normal?

    1. Sam says:


      Ideally, there the first week is considered as the waiting period. You should have received the payments by now. Please call the Claims Center for assistance.

  7. Lynn Heckler says:

    I filed a claim for the week ending March 24 for just one week. I could not work because the county closed the park where I work. I never received the one week amount.

    1. Sam says:


      For dispute with your claim, please call the Claims Center at the phone numbers provided.

  8. cj says:

    A friend is currently on unemployment. Beginning next Monday he will be on house arrest with permission to leave for work. Will he be able to continue to collect?

    1. Sam says:

      If your friend is being employed, he will not be able to collect UI benefits.

  9. Lauren says:

    I recently filed for unemployment, and when asked for the names of my dependents there was only 2 spots. But I have 3 children. So now I am approved with the 2 dependents, but how can I change it to 3? I can not find this questions anywhere, and the telephones are busy. Thanks, Lauren

    1. Sam says:


      Please visit the website of the Unemployment Office to log in to your account and find an option to edit your profile. Here is the link

  10. Patricia Monk says:

    If i file on sunday, when will i receive my compensation? already approved, didn’t receive my first check

  11. Tierney Simmons says:

    I was an employee of Armstrong County from January 2, 1992 through January 2, 2018. My position was as the administrative assistant, judicial secretary, and law librarian under Judges Valasek and Nickleach. I was terminated by the newly elected judge who wanted to select his own assistant. I was offered a position roughly 50% of my salary. My income for 2017 was $45,721.60. I am now employed by a Kittanning law firm. My salary is $33,000.00 My question is whether I am eligible for unemployment compensation for the loss in income.

    1. Sam says:


      Unemployment Insurance benefits are only offered to claimants who’re completely jobless. Please inquire further by calling the Unemployment Office.

  12. Debra strunk says:

    I have been filing my unemployment claims for 6 weeks and have not received a payment. I was told that payments were processed. I would like to know what is going on please reach me at 5708801824

    1. Sam says:


      Please note this is a private website and we do not have access to your claim file. Please chase the claims center by phone until you get a concrete update.

  13. Lorri says:

    I hold a full time job that as of 1/1/2018 will be eliminated and I will be filing an initial claim for this job but..I also am an independent contractor for the local newspaper company ( I deliver newspapers) As an independent contractor which does not pay unemployment compensation taxes, do I claim these wages?? Please advise

    1. Sam says:


      Contract type of employment does not generally qualify. Please call the Unemployment Office for clarification.

  14. Barbara P says:

    I have been at my job for 20+ yrs and broke my leg and had surgery in Sept. I was unable to work from Sep 4th through Dec 4th. When I went back to work was told I could have collected. Did this qualify me to collect and could I now submit a claim and collect for the time I was out. Thank you

    1. Sam says:


      Please call the Unemployment Office to inquire further.

  15. amy mufferi says:

    the store I was working at closed they offered me a job 33 miles away. with no compensation for the travel. I cant afford to drive that far. Am I eligible for unemployment?

    1. Sam says:


      If you decide to to accept the new location, it may be considered voluntary. Please call the Unemployment Office in your state to ascertain before making a decision.

  16. barbara says:

    can you get unemployment if you also get social security

    1. Sam says:


      Most of the states allow the provision of both. Please contact the Unemployment Office for further details.

  17. ronald rutkosky says:

    after 37 years at the same company I am being let go at the end of the month. I am 65 and was going to retire in February When do I file? I am very hard of hearing and unable to use a telephone My wife cannot get any info as they want to speak to me which is impossible

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