If you are laid-off, then you are not receiving any money to survive on. Many people start fearing, particularly if they are having a tough time finding a job. That’s why there is unemployment compensation, which pays off you for a certain amount of time while you are seeking another job. However, there are certain eligibility requirements and standards to be met to collect this compensation and each state has its own.
Here’s what you have to do to collect unemployment benefits in Florida.
First of all, you must qualify monetarily. A laid-off worker can be eligible for benefits provided that the individual has worked in covered employment and earned a lowest amount of wages in the base period.
- The claimant’s base period is the 1st four of the last five completed calendar quarters
- There should be wages in two or more quarters in the base period
- There must be a minimum of $3,400 in the base period and the claimant must have 1.5 times the high quarter wages in the base period
- The weekly benefit amount is 1/26th of the high quarter wages (the minimum is $32 and the maximum is $275).
- The maximum amount to be paid on a claim is 25% of the total wages in the base period. However, for claims filed before January 1, 2012, the utmost benefits cannot go beyond $7,150.
- Beginning January 1, 2012 the benefits to be paid in an claim are decided depending upon the average unemployment rate in Florida during the third calendar quarter of the year before the effective date of the claim. Claims filed during a year ranging from 12 weeks, when the jobless rate is 5% or less, to 23 weeks when the jobless rate is 10.5% or higher. The maximum benefits owed on a claim will thereby, range from$3,300 to $6,325.
Qualifying for Benefits
In order to be eligible for benefits, the worker must claim for benefits for each week. Apart from this, he/she must:
- Be totally or partially unemployed.
- File an initial claim for benefits and report as directed to file for succeeding weeks.
- Have the necessary wage credits for work in covered employment during the base period.
- Have worked and earned three times the current weekly benefit amount since the filing date of the previous claim, providing the individual received benefits on the previous claim.
- Be able to work and available for work, and be registered for and keenly seeking work.
- For claims filed on or after August 1, 2011 complete an on-line initial skills review.
- Take part in reemployment services, such as job search assistance services.
- Serve a waiting week, for which no benefits are owed, after filing an initial claim.
A claimant may be ineligible because of the reasons for separation from work. The facts concerning the circumstances causing the separation must be clearly established.
The following may disqualify an individual from receiving benefits:
- Voluntarily quit without good cause attributable to the employing unit.
- Suspended or discharged for misconduct connected with work irrespective of whether the misconduct occurs at the workplace or during working hours.
- Suspended or discharged for misconduct related with work consisting of drug use as evidenced by a positive, confirmed drug test.
- Failed without good cause either to apply for suitable work or to accept anywork or to return to customary self-employment when directed by DEO (Florida Department of Economic Opportunity).
- Unemployed due to a labor dispute in active progress which exists at the place of employment; and the individual is participating in or financing or directly interested in such labor dispute. In some cases, unemployment due to a lockout may not be disqualifying.
- Furnished false information or made a fake representation for the purpose of obtaining benefits such as not reporting earnings or job refusals. Willful misrepresentation is also cause for fine and imprisonment.
- Obtaining a retirement income from a base period employer.
- Receiving or seeking unemployment benefits under an unemployment compensation law of another state or the United States, unless the appropriate agency of such state or of the United States finally decides that the individual is not entitled to such jobless benefits.
- Alien, unless such alien has been lawfully admitted for permanent residence or otherwise is permanently residing in the United States under appearance of law.
- Terminated from employment for violation of any criminal law punishable by imprisonment or for any dishonest act in connection with the individual’s employment.
- Getting wages in place of notice or severance pay applicable to a claim week, which is equal to or greater than the claimant’s weekly benefit amount.
- Incarcerated during a week of unemployment.
Once you have passed the obstacle of determining your status, you must also consider other qualifying conditions as summarized by Florida Statues 443.091. The Agency for Workforce Innovation should find that you made a claim for benefits for the week, you are listed with the agency for work and you report to the one-stop career center.
Exception to Benefit Eligibility Conditions
If you are for the short term laid off because of lack of work, you still have to register and make a claim, but you will not be needed to report to the one-stop career center. If you are a union member who normally gets employment through a union hiring hall, you also do not have to report to the one-stop center, as per Florida Statutes 443.091.
So once you recognize that you’re eligible, you have to file a claim for unemployment compensation benefits. You can do this online at www.fluidnow.com or at the toll free number 1-800-204-2418. You can also file by mail. For detail check filing for Florida unemployment benefits article.
After you file your claim, then you need to wait and see how much your unemployment compensation pay will be. You will be sent a wage transcript clarifying what your wage credits and how long you may obtain benefits.
That’s how you get unemployment benefits in Florida State. You must first meet the eligibility requirements. After that you must file a claim and wait for your transcript determination. Then you can anticipate weekly unemployment pay to aid you and obtain another job.