How To File For Unemployment

Losing one's job due to a layoff is hardly a positive situation to experience. Worries and fears over loss of income are accompanied by worries about how the rent will be paid and how food remains on the table. For those workers who have paid into unemployment insurance, means of drawing a weekly payment exists. Anyone who is not an independent contractor and is paid with a W-2 sees a small amount of money taken out of a check to cover unemployment compensation. Those who lose their jobs under qualifying circumstances may file a claim for benefits. The process of doing so is not all that complicated, but the process is deliberate. In other words, there are some key steps that must be followed.

Filing with the State
Unemployment compensation is a state-based benefit. The person who wishes to file for a claim must follow the process established in a particular state. The means of applying could include one or more of the following:
  • Filing online
  • Applying via the phone
  • Mailing in an application
Most applicants are sure to have their own personal preferences. The key to applying is following all the requirements necessary for the submission of a proper form. Omitting details leads to delays or denials or worse.

Be aware that an in-person interview is sure to be required before any determination is made. The "easy part" of the application is not the only part.

Moving From State To State
Depending upon the applicant's situation, he/she may need to move to a new state after a job loss. The applicant would need to file in the state in which he/she worked. Filing for a claim in New Jersey after working three years exclusively in New York leads to an automatic rejection. The claim was filed in the wrong state.
Circumstances Associated With Unemployment
In order to be approved for unemployment compensation, the job loss must be the result of no fault of the applicant. A person cannot just quit and collect unemployment compensation. The termination must be the result of circumstances outside the individual's control.

Those who were fired may find collecting unemployment very difficult. Other factors that come into play regarding unemployment compensation approval. Is the applicant under suspension or taking a leave of absence? Is the individual physically unable to work or can he/she easily perform the tasks of a new job?

An application will be reviewed in a thorough manner. Ultimately, the representative from the unemployment agency makes a determination on approvals or denials. Those who are approved simply need to follow the steps required to receive a weekly check or direct deposit. Anyone who is denied should not feel the initial declining of the application means all is over. Appeals are allowed under the rules of the various agencies.

Properly Applying For A Claim
Consider it important to have all the necessary information required for the in-person interview. Proper identification, W-2 and employment documents, social security card, contact information for the applicant and the previous employer.
Requesting The Funds
Those who are approved for unemployment compensation need to follow all requirements to receive a weekly payment. This may require calling on the phone and answering recorded questions by a certain time. All questions must be answered truthfully. Otherwise, the receipt of any payment may be deemed fraud. Always be honest and thorough with all dealing with the state agency.