Millions of Americans apply for unemployment each month after becoming separated from their jobs. The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the number of unemployment claims throughout the last year due to widespread government shutdowns. Learning how to get unemployment benefits after losing your job is an important part of staying financially afloat during tough times.
Wondering how to apply for unemployment benefits in your state? Not sure if you qualify? Learn everything from how to apply for unemployment benefits to how much money you could earn each week by reading through the slides below.
Unemployment insurance, or UI, is a federal and state benefit program that helps millions of Americans afford their bills after they lose their jobs. You can apply for unemployment if you meet the qualifications set by your specific state.
To file an unemployment claim, you must generally have lost your job through no fault of your own. Each state may define this a bit differently, but in general, you must have separated from your job for a reason that was beyond your control.
This means that you do not qualify for unemployment benefits if you separated from your job for any of the following reasons:
- You were fired from your job due to misconduct.
- You quit your job voluntarily.
- You quit your job without sufficient cause.
- You left your job because you no longer wish to work and are not willing to find another job.
In some cases, you may qualify to apply for unemployment benefits if you experience reduced hours or were placed on furlough. At the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, many jobs were forced to temporarily shut down in accordance with state or local shutdown orders. Even now, millions of Americans no longer have the same hours or pay they once did prior to the pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic also changed how some states pay unemployment benefits to self-employed and contract workers. These workers may now be able to apply for unemployment benefits (depending on their state) due to relaxed qualification measures in an effort to help more Americans get back on their feet.
Another qualification factor for how to get unemployment depends on how much income you earned prior to becoming separated from your job. Most states have minimum income amounts you must meet before you can earn any benefits.
In Florida, for example, anyone applying for unemployment benefits must have earned at least $3,400 (before taxes) in the base period. This is defined as the first four quarters of work beginning 18 months prior to applying for benefits. Keep in mind that states may define the base period differently.
If you are eligible to apply for unemployment in your state, you must typically file a claim each week. Additionally, most states require you to actively search for a job in order to continue receiving benefits.
Learn more about how to file unemployment claim status in your state and how to maintain eligibility for benefits.
By Admin –