Unemployment Benefits Coverage and Duration in Pennsylvania
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In order to claim unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania, unemployment applicants must follow a specific process. There is no guarantee that an unemployment benefits claim will be accepted, but unemployment applicants can improve their odds of acceptance by following the application process carefully, and making sure that they are eligible before they apply for benefits. Information about the steps involved can be found below, including:
- Claiming Benefits for Unemployment in Pennsylvania
- Qualifications to Claim Unemployment Benefits in Pennsylvania
- How an Unemployment Benefits Claim Amount is Determined in Pennsylvania
- How Long Unemployment Benefits Claims Will Last in Pennsylvania
- Unemployment Benefits Extension Requests in Pennsylvania
Claiming Benefits for Unemployment in Pennsylvania
Federal unemployment benefits are distributed through the Federal-State Unemployment Insurance Program. The United States Department of Labor works closely with each state’s government to distribute unemployment benefits from that program to those who qualify. Those benefits are then distributed by each state’s governing agency for unemployment. Applicants claiming benefits for unemployment in Pennsylvania must do so through the Office of Unemployment Compensation (OUC), which is a division of the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry. Even though the program is partially federally run, all unemployment applicants must also meet Pennsylvania’s state requirements in order to claim their unemployment benefits.
Qualifications to Claim Unemployment Benefits in Pennsylvania
An unemployment benefits claim in Pennsylvania requires the applicant to meet certain financial requirements. The Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation Law, or UC Law, dictates that each unemployment applicant must have worked in an acceptable field for a certain length of time in order to claim benefits. Claiming benefits for unemployment in Pennsylvania is impossible for applicants if they have recently lost jobs listed due to reasons on the exempt list under the UC Law.
The process of how to claim unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania also includes examining why the job in question was lost. Even unemployment benefits claim applicants who worked in accepted fields may not be able to collect unemployment benefits if they were fired. Only unemployment applicants who lost their jobs due to reasons beyond their control can collect benefits. Some unemployment applicants may have to work harder to prove their cases for no-fault termination than others. It may be a simple matter of sending paperwork, but unemployment applicants may also have to submit to hearings in order to receive benefits.
How an Unemployment Benefits Claim Amount is Determined in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania unemployed benefits claims that are accepted may still vary in terms of the amount dispensed. The exact amount of each payment will be determined based on factors that include how much money the unemployment beneficiary was earning at his or her previous job. That amount is calculated surrounding the base year. The unemployment applicant must calculate gross earnings for each quarter of that year and report those earnings to the OUC. The OUC will then look at the highest-quarter amount and use that to determine the weekly benefits amount that will be paid out to the unemployment beneficiary. Download our free guide to read more about how to personally determine potential unemployment benefits.
How Long Unemployment Benefits Claims Will Last in Pennsylvania
An unemployment benefits claim in Pennsylvania can last for as long as 26 weeks, but it can also end after as few as 18 weeks. The exact length of time that the unemployment applicant can receive benefits will depend on how many weeks he or she worked during the base year, and how much money he or she earned during that time. The maximum benefits amount (MBA) and weekly benefit rate (WBR) will be clearly outlined in the acceptance letter that the unemployment beneficiary receives. Both the MBA and the WBR minimums and maximums are subject to change each year, depending on economic circumstances.
Unemployment Benefits Extension Requests in Pennsylvania
An unemployment benefits extension opportunity is sometimes available in Pennsylvania. However, the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry does not allow unemployment benefits claim extensions on a day-to-day basis every year. Unemployment benefits extensions are only available whenever Pennsylvania is in a state of economic turmoil that causes excessive unemployment rates. Furthermore, not every unemployment beneficiary can qualify for an extension of unemployment benefits, even when such extensions are available in Pennsylvania. To learn more about the terms of Pennsylvania’s unemployment extension options, download our guide.