Pennsylvania Unemployment Eligibility
If you’ve lost your job in Pennsylvania due to no fault of your own, you may be eligible to receive unemployment assistance. Unemployed workers are welcome to apply for unemployment benefits. The state of Pennsylvania will review your claim to ensure that you meet the qualifications.
Before you submit an initial claim, it helps to understand what reviewers will look for as they evaluate your application. Ultimately, whether your unemployment claim is approved will depend on the information you provide within your application, along with the information your employer will supply.
Pennsylvania Unemployment Eligibility Calculator
Are you willing and able to work?
How did you lose your previous job?
Have you been affected by coronavirus?
Were you offered telework with pay by your employer?
Were you fired for no fault of your own?
Did you quit your last job due to unsafe working conditions, not being paid, discrimination and / or health and safety risks?
Do you have paid medical leave?
Do you have a family member you are caring for?
You May Be Eligible
You May Not Be Eligible
Do you have paid family leave?
You May Be Eligible
You May Not Be Eligible
3 Eligibility Requirements for PA Unemployment Benefits
- Financial Eligibility
- Job Separation Eligibility
- Maintaining Eligibility
There are three important components you should understand about your eligibility for Pennsylvania unemployment compensation. We’ve outlined them for you below.
The first thing the state will consider when reviewing your PA unemployment benefits claim is whether you meet financial eligibility requirements. This means that you’ve previously worked enough hours and earned enough wages through covered employment to meet the state’s minimum qualifications.
Once that decision has been made, you’ll receive a Notice of Financial Determination from the Office of Unemployment Compensation. This notice will outline whether you are eligible, and if so, the amount of unemployment assistance you can expect to receive.
Job Separation Eligibility
In addition to determining your financial eligibility, the state will consider the circumstances of your separation from work. Keep in mind that unemployment compensation exists to help workers who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own, so your claim will need to show that.
Workers who are laid off or had their hours reduced generally qualify for unemployment assistance. In cases where work environments are toxic, hostile, or dangerous, even workers who voluntarily quit their jobs can be eligible. If you’re unsure about your specific situation, this information about how to apply for unemployment benefits in PA may help.
Both you and your employer will be asked about the circumstances of your separation from work, and if you submit differing stories, you’ll be allowed the opportunity to fully present your side of the situation. For instance, you may be asked to complete a follow-up questionnaire that helps provide details about your former work situation.
You will receive notification of whether your situation entitles you to unemployment compensation, and if your claim is denied, you also have the opportunity to appeal the determination.
When it comes to unemployment compensation, it isn’t enough simply to have your initial claim approved. To maintain your eligibility for PA UC benefits, you must file a weekly claim. The state of Pennsylvania lets you file weekly or biweekly. For purposes of certification, a “week” is defined as a calendar week that begins on Sunday and ends the following Saturday.
Maintaining your UC eligibility requires you to submit information each week regarding any work activity, wages earned, severance pay received, or jobs offered during that time period. This weekly filing information helps the state verify that you continue to be eligible for the unemployment compensation you are receiving.
To maintain eligibility, you must meet certain conditions with each weekly or biweekly claim. For example, you must show that you are able and willing to accept suitable work when it is offered. You also must not refuse any suitable work when it’s offered without a reason constituting good cause. In some cases, you might be asked to participate in the state’s re-employment services.
You will also be required to register for reemployment services at PA CareerLink within 30 days of submitting your initial claim for UC benefits. You must show that you are actively seeking work during each week for which you claim unemployment compensation. To do so, you’ll need to keep a log of weekly work search activities.
You can choose to file weekly or biweekly. It’s very important to submit your weekly or biweekly claim in a timely manner – this submission is what determines the timing and amount of your weekly compensation. You can file your weekly certification through your online account, over the phone, or by mail, though the easiest and most timely certification method is through your online account.
Common Eligibility Questions
I was fired from my last job, can I still qualify for UC?
To be frank, your chances are slim. Typically in PA, folks who get fired from their jobs are rarely considered eligible for UC. This means that claimants who lost their reason due to no mistake of yours alone get to receive UC benefits. So it is unlikely that you will qualify for UC.
However, we still recommend that you file a claim for UI. There are some cases where even fired claimants were deemed eligible for UI, so you should not refrain from filing for UI just because you were fired.
If you feel that firing you was uncalled for and that not justified, bring that to the attention of the authorities at the Unemployment Insurance Agency. If your claim was denied because you were fired from your last job, you may get the chance to appeal .
I was laid off from my previous job as the company was shutting down. Will I qualify for UI benefits?
Laws vary from state to state in the U.S. In general, claimants who were laid off from their jobs because there was no sufficient work or because the company was shutting down are usually eligible for UI. As long as there is no mistake of yours behind your job separation, you should be okay.
However, keep in mind that it is not the only criterion for qualifying for UC. You must have earned minimum wages and worked minimum hours during your base period to be eligible.
I wish to quit my job for a very genuine reason. Will I be able to collect UI benefits?
That would depend on the reason that compelled you to quit your job. However, in general, claims are denied to claimants who opted for a voluntary resignation as this is a direct negation to the rule that applicants must have lost their jobs due to no fault of theirs.
That said, the state of Pennsylvania does understand that there could be reasons outside of your control that compel you to leave your job. Hence, some applicants are considered eligible if the reason behind the decision to quit was one of the following.
- Unavailability of suitable transportation
- Harassment at work
- Unfriendly working environment
Want to know about how much you will receive? Calculate your benefits here
Watch this video to know more about unemployment eligibility requirements in the state of Pennsylvania –