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Qualifying for Benefits

Step One: Financial Eligibility

Are you financially eligible for benefits? You must have enough wages and weeks of work in your employment history to qualify for UC. This is known as "financial eligibility." You will receive a Notice of Financial Determination (Form UC-44F) from the department that will state whether you are financially eligible and, if you are, the amount of benefits you may receive. Your Notice of Financial Determination will be accompanied by an insert that fully explains financial eligibility. Read these documents carefully and follow all instructions that apply to you.

Step Two: Your Job Separation

Why are you unemployed? To qualify for benefits, you must be unemployed or working reduced hours through no fault of your own (a qualifying separation).

There may be times when a department representative will contact you and your employer to discuss the reason for your separation from your job. If you and your employer disagree on the reason for your unemployment, or any other issues arise that may affect your eligibility for benefits, you will be given a chance to explain your side of the story. For example, you may receive a questionnaire to complete and return. If benefits are denied, you will receive a written determination, which you can appeal. (See Your Appeal Rights)

REMEMBER! Promptly complete and return all forms you receive from the UC service center to avoid delays and to explain your side of the story.

Working Part Time: You may be eligible for benefits if (1) your regular hours of work are reduced, (2) you are separated from your job and have obtained part-time employment with fewer hours of work, or (3) you are separated from one job but continue to have part-time employment with another employer(s). If you are working your normal, full-time hours in any job during a week, you are not eligible for benefits for that week.

Step Three: Maintaining Eligibility

Have you met the continuing requirements? If you are financially eligible and your separation from employment is qualifying, you must satisfy certain requirements on a continuing basis in order to remain eligible for benefits. The following chapter will explain those requirements.


UC Introduction

UC Handbook home page

Maintaining Your Eligibility for Benefits.