California Unemployment Offices

California Unemployment Offices

The United States Department of Labor provides Unemployment Insurance programs to assist in the finances of workers who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own and who pass certain eligibility requirements while they are looking for another job. If you are one of these workers residing in the State of California, be informed that not all out-of-job workers will benefit from this program. First, you must categorically fit the department’s description of an “Unemployed”.

Unemployment Definition

Basically, a person is unemployed (or out of the labor force) when he has lost his job involuntarily, is looking for opportunities to find a job in the last four weeks, physically capable and is readily available to work when an work offer is presented to him. If you do not fit the definition, then your application will be subject to a longer process. This occurs in cases when a worker quits a job or is fired from work. In this situation the Department of Labor will not automatically reject the application. Rather, a person will be scheduled for a phone interview to address separation issues that should be resolved.

Other California Eligibility Requirements

Other than the conditions mentioned above, a person filing an unemployment insurance claim should have received a sufficient amount of wages during the base period. In economics the base period is a worker’s employment period prior to his losing a job when his employer would have contributed unemployment insurance taxes to the government. The base period covers the first four of the last five concluded calendar quarters before the effective date of the claim. To illustrate, if the unemployment claim is April, May or June of 2012, and the last five quarters are January 2011 to March 2012, then the base period is January 2011 to December 2011. A person filing for unemployment insurance claim should be (1) partially or totally unemployed, (2) must meet eligibility requirements every week that the benefits are claimed, and (3) is approved for training before training benefits can be paid.

With regards to the weekly eligibility for unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, this would pertain to 3 things: the person is physically capable to work, is available for work anytime, and is actively seeking for a job at the time benefits are claimed. These areas are confirmed by the Employment Development Department (EDD) of the State of California through phone interviews or when benefits are claimed personally. Such provision is also applicable with regards to evaluating whether the claimant is partially or totally unemployed.

A claim form should be completed every two weeks with the claimant’s signature and the corresponding date it was filled up before being returned to EDD. Only then will the benefits be processed. The lowest weekly benefit in California is $40, with $450 as the highest weekly benefit amount.

California Training Benefits Program

The department also provides training to individuals interested in increasing their chances of getting hired. This is called the California Training Benefits Program. The main idea is when a person enjoying UI claims decides to enroll himself to this program, he is at the same time obliged to report his school attendance every week. In this case, a claimant is not demanded to look for work, be ready for work, or accept work while in training and still enjoying UI benefits. This is especially advantageous to individuals who need more competitive skills in order to contribute in the labor force as well as get a full time job after training. Any person enrolling in this program is expected to complete the training successfully.

Step-by-Step Guide on Filing for Unemployment Insurance Claims in California

There are 3 method individuals can use in order to file a claim.

First, a person can apply using eApply4UI on the official website of the State of California Employment Development Department. Through the website claimants can easily answer questions by completing and submitting them online. Through the Internet, filing of the claim through eApply4UI any individual can enjoy their benefits in the fastest possible time. Second, a person can contact EDD by telephone; thus a phone interview where a representative will ask a series of questions is recorded. Third, a paper UI application may also be done by using the DE 1101I form. Whether completed online and printed, or printed and completed by hand, the form may be faxed or mailed to the EDD office and is immediately processed once received.

How a California Unemployment Claim is processed

After the Department representative files the claim, he mails several documents to the claimant as well as the employer. In order for the EDD to decide whether a claimant is eligible to get Unemployment benefits or not, the Department representatives conduct interviews to claimants, employers, or their representatives. The statements during interviews are reviewed in writing.

Unless there are any disputes, claimants can now fill up the Continued Claim Form DE4581. This form is completed and submitted every two weeks provided they always meet all eligibility requirements.

Where to Go When You Need Help Filing a California Unemployment Claim

The great thing about living in California even when you are in the state of temporary unemployment is that there are plenty of resources to choose from which provide assistance to support you. There are many parts in California that provide added services according to your needs and all you have to do is dial 2-1-1 to know more about where to go. These agencies can provide the following assistance.

  1. Basic Necessities Assistance
  2. Food Assistance
  3. Low Cost Car Insurance
  4. Human Services Assistance
  5. Medical Care and Healthcare Coverage
  6. Housing Resources
  7. Credit Card Debt Relief
  8. Community-Based Resources