Filing for Unemployment

Easy steps to help you file for unemployment

Thanks to the Coronavirus, the unemployment rate has risen a lot. Thousands of Americans have to figure out how to file for unemployment and receive benefits while trying to stay healthy, warm, and safe. Fortunately, filing for unemployment in Indiana can be accomplished in 3 steps.

The first step is to fill out the application form for unemployment insurance. Before you click the link to fill out the form, you will need the following information in order to fill out the form,

●   You will need a valid email account – your email address will become your Uplink username.
●   You will need a driver’s license or valid ID, an address, your Social Security number, your date of birth, and a phone number.
●   You will need the name of your last employer, their mailing address, their phone number, the dates for when you were employed by them, and the reason you are currently unemployed.
●   You will need your bank routing number and account number IF you are choosing to receive payments through direct deposit.

You can click here to start the application form for unemployment insurance. If you haven’t already, make sure to register for a new account to get started. Tip: pay attention to details and instructions! If you fill out everything to your best ability and correctly, the whole process will move more quickly and smoothly.

If you are an independent contractor, a self-employed individual, or you are not eligible for regular unemployment insurance benefits, you can still be eligible for Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. You still have to file a regular claim for unemployment benefits and be denied for those benefits before you can be considered for the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. Once you are denied the regular unemployment benefits, you should see the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) application on your claimant homepage as a TODO task.

The second step is to file weekly vouchers. There is an online filing system called Uplink, it is the same system used to apply for unemployment benefits. Through Uplink, you will submit your vouchers, starting with the week you first submitted your unemployment application. You should submit a voucher every week through Uplink. These vouchers will cover the previous week, it will not cover the same week that it is submitted.

It’s important to note that the week starts on Sunday at midnight and ends on the following Saturday at 8:59 pm EST. Additionally, you should always submit your vouchers even if you are having an issue delaying your benefits or if you are appealing a decision. It’s very important to continue submitting the vouchers weekly and, when a decision is made, all eligible payments will be available to you.

The last step covers what happens after you file for unemployment. Within 10 business days after filing for unemployment, you will receive a Monetary Determination of Eligibility form. This will not tell you if you qualify for unemployment insurance. This form will only tell you the possible amount you could receive for weekly benefits and the overall maximum amount of benefits you could receive IF you are considered eligible for unemployment insurance.

You should find out within 21 business days after filing for unemployment if you are eligible for unemployment insurance or not. Most payments occur around 21 business days, so patience is important. However, it may take longer if there are any issues with your application.

Common problems that result in delayed results may include the following:

● Some types of incomes that you have received must be deducted from the benefit amount (for example, severance of vacation payout), resulting in a delay. If you enter your income information into the form correctly, payment will only be delayed for a specified amount of time. However, if it is entered into the form incorrectly, it will take longer to process, resulting in a longer delay of benefits.
● Quitting voluntarily without a good reason will result in delayed benefits. If you or your employer claim that you quit voluntarily, it may disqualify you from receiving benefits. They will take time to look into this to determine whether your reasoning to quit is good or not, and they may contact your employer.
● If you, an employer, or an internal records search indicate that you are working, there will be a delay as they investigate this situation. Benefits are only for those who are unemployed or partially unemployed. Part-time work may result in only partial payment.
● Making mistakes and errors in the application form will also result in a delay. However, this is usually resolved within days of the submission.
● Not being a U.S. or Indiana resident may also disqualify you from eligibility in Indiana. If you were working illegally or if it is illegal for you to work while claiming benefits, you will not be eligible for benefits.
● If the Indiana Department of Workforce Development (which is in charge of the unemployment claims) believes you are committing fraud, there will be a delay while they investigate your claim. If you have been convicted of fraud in the past, there are additional requirements you must meet in order to qualify for benefits again.

Finally, you can appeal determinations of eligibility. Meaning, you can reapply for unemployment benefits if you were previously denied. However, this will cause a delay when processing the application and appeal.

You will be contacted if there are any issues found in your application. Additionally, because Indiana (and the rest of the nation) is experiencing higher than normal unemployment rates due to the pandemic, there is a chance that you will experience a delay in your claim. As of right now, most applicants are receiving their payments within 21 business days after filing an unemployment claim, but it is not a guaranteed timeline.

If you’d like to learn more about the resources Mary Rigg may have to help you, connect with someone on our Family and Financial Resource team by calling 317-639-6106.