How to File for Unemployment if You Lose Your Income
How to file for unemployment if you lose your income
As COVID-19 continues to spread across the state and businesses react to mandated closures, some are worried they may lose their jobs.
If you find yourself in that situation, here’s what to know about filing for unemployment benefits in Texas.
How to apply for unemployment benefits
Those filing for unemployment can submit an application on the Texas Workforce Commission’s website or by calling 800-939-6631.
Here’s what information you will need to apply, according to the commission:
Last employer’s business name and address
- First and last dates you worked for your last employer
- Number of hours worked and pay rate if you worked this week
- Information on your normal wage
- Your A-number, if not a U.S. citizen or national
After filing your claim, electronic notifications related to your unemployment benefit application are available.
Those in need of work can search for jobs at WorkInTexas.com.
How much of your income will be covered by unemployment benefits varies from person to person, according to the commission. You can estimate your unemployment benefits online.
Who is eligible?
The Texas Workforce Commission on its website has a list of scenarios related to the COVID-19 outbreak for those seeking unemployment benefits. It addresses situations like being in quarantine (self, employer or government ordered) as employers closing businesses or laying off staff.
Here are a few of the possible scenarios:
- If you’re laid off because you employer has to close the business or reduce staff, you may be eligible.
- If you self-quarantine and have COVID-19, you may be eligible.
- If an employer keeps a business open, but you’re placed on reduced hours, you may be eligible for partial unemployment.
“If you get paid your regular pay or sick leave while you are out of work, you may not be eligible or it may affect how much you receive if you are,” according to the commission.
According to the commission, unemployment benefits claims will be evaluated based on past wages, the type of job separation (layoff, a reduction in hours, being fired but not for misconduct, etc.) and ongoing eligibility requirements.
Texas Workforce Commission waives waiting week
On March 17, Gov. Greg Abbott instructed the commission to waive the waiting week for unemployment benefits.
“Under normal circumstances, TWC cannot pay for the first week of a claim until an individual receives 2 times their weekly benefit amount and returns to full-time work or has exhausted their benefits,” a news release reads. “However, by waiving the waiting week, Gov. Abbott has provided the opportunity for TWC to provide relief to Texans who need it.”
The commission is also waiving unemployment insurance work search requirements. Typically to be eligible for unemployment benefits, applicants had to register for work search on WorkinTexas.com and meet a number of search activities each week, according to the release.