Learn About your California Unemployment Rights

  Last Verified: January 2017  

California’s unemployment insurance (UI) program is aimed at providing financial support for citizens who are temporarily out of work until they find new employment. The program is funded by the taxes paid by employers. Since the UI program benefits the entire community and helps California’s economy, Seal of California employers are happy to see their taxes go to such a noble cause. For those seeking unemployment in California, it is important that you know all of the ins and outs of the program to ensure that you can get the benefits you need without running into any hitches along the way.


To be eligible to receive unemployment benefits in California, you must earn wages from an employer covered by the state’s unemployment insurance law. Such “covered employers” pay the tax that funds the unemployment insurance program. You must have earned a certain amount of wages over a 12-month period. Additionally:

  • You must be able and willing to work
  • You must be actively seeking new employment
  • You must be fully or partially unemployed
  • You must be unemployed through no fault of your own

Eligibility Requirements Explained

Able and Available

You must be physically and mentally able to work. You must be available to accept an offer of suitable employment. “Suitable employment” is a job you’re trained to do at a salary similar to previous work.

Unemployed Through No Fault of your Own

Your actions or decisions cannot be the cause of your separation from work. Workers who lost a job due to layoffs or similar reasons are likely to be eligible for benefits. Those who were discharged are likely to find the state denying their benefits.

Other Issues

You must be a US citizen or have proof you are allowed to work legally in the US to be eligible. You can be partially unemployed (your employer reduced your hours or wages) and be eligible.

Wage Earning Requirement and the Base Period

You must have earned wages from a covered employer over a 12-month period called the “base period.” The base period is the first four of the last five quarters prior to your filing your initial claim for benefits.

unemployment base period

This chart shows the base period.

The Employment Development Department’s (EDD) examiners will look at your wages over the base period to determine your eligibility. To meet the earnings requirement, you must have earned:

  • At least $1,300 in the quarter when you made the most money, or
  • At least $900 in your highest quarter and total base period earnings that equal or exceed 1.25 times your highest quarter earnings.

If you don’t meet the requirement using the standard base period, the EDD will automatically apply an alternate base period. The alternate calculation uses the 12-months immediately prior to you filing a claim.

Your Benefit Amount

The state has not released how it arrives at your weekly benefit amount (WBA); however, we know it is based on your highest quarter base period wages. The EDD provides a chart that shows how much you could receive based on your high quarter wages.

The state maximum WBA is currently $450 and the minimum is $40. Your WBA will never be higher or lower than the maximum and minimum, which is set by law. The maximum amount of weeks you can receive benefit payments is 26 during a benefit year.

How to Apply for Unemployment in CA

You can apply online on the EDD site here: https://eapply4ui.edd.ca.gov/

Alternatively, you may also apply over the phone.You may use the automated self-service numbers:

ENGLISH 1-866-333-4606
ESPAÑOL 1-866-333-4606

Or you may call to speak with a customer service representative. The EDD makes available representatives in various languages recognizing the state’s diverse population.

English: 1-800-300-5616

Spanish: 1-800-326-8937

Chinese: 1-800-547-3506

Vietnamese: 1-800-547-2058

You may also use the paper unemployment application that you can download from the EDD website. The form contains the fax number and mailing address to use to complete your application.

You will need some information when you apply. It is best to have this ready before you apply. The Basic information you will need is:

  • Personal info: Name, phone number, SSN, address, and Driver’s License number
  • The dates that you worked for your last employer and their information (name, phone number, address)
  • Reason you are no longer working for you last employer
  • Information for every employer you worked for in the past 18 months (name, phone number, address)
  • Reason you are no longer working for you last employer

During the actual application process you will be asked questions in order to determine whether or not you are eligible for unemployment benefits. If questions arise regarding your claim, such as separation issues, you may be asked to complete an interview with the EDD. You will receive a notice including the date and time to call.

Benefit Certifications and Maintaining Eligibility

The state requires that workers maintain their eligibility status while they receive benefits. This includes looking for work and being available to accept suitable employment. The state monitors your eligibility by requiring you to file a bi-weekly claim, called certifying for continued benefits.

You may certify online, by phone or mail, just as with filing the initial claim.

To file online, you will register an account with UI OnlineSM . The online portal allows you to perform various tasks online related to your claim as well as your certifications. The system is mobile computing-friendly.

You may use Use EDD Tele-CertSM to certify for UI benefits over the phone by calling the UI self-service number: 1-866-333-4606.

If necessary, you can use a paper form to certify. Your claim will be subject to the normal speed of the postal system. The EDD will mail a copy of the Continued Claim Form that you need to file by mail.

However you certify, you will have to answer several questions to show that you remain eligible each week. These questions intend to ensure you are looking for work and allow you to report any income you’ve earned.

  • Whether you are able to work
  • Whether you are available to accept suitable employment offers
  • Whether you are looking for work
  • Whether you have quit or started a job
  • Whether you have earned any wages or received income

If you are working, you will report your income during the certification process.

Work Search Requirements

As a condition of receiving benefits, you have to show that you are making a good faith effort to find a job. You’ll have to register with CaliJobs, the EDD’s workforce service. Depending on your circumstances, you may have to look for work each week and keep a record of your job search efforts.

  • Union workers may be required to look for full or part-time work on their own, or follow the requirements their union sets forth for dispatch.
  • The EDD may not require some workers to look for work; however, these workers must remain able and available.
  • The EDD may exempt some workers from the requirement.

The EDD will inform all workers of their work search requirements.

Part-time Work and Benefits

California allows you to work part-time and continue to receive benefits even if you earn more than your WBA. When you report your wages, the EDD will calculate the deduction and you will receive the leftover, if any. Your claim may become inactive if you earn more than your WBA. The state will notify you that your claim is inactive and you will have to reopen your claim.

  • If you earn $100 or less, the first $25 will not count.
  • If you earn $101 or more, the first 25% will not count.
  • The EDD will deduct other types of income dollar-for-dollar, like pension payments.

You must report wages earned within the week you earned them, not the week you received payment. The state receives quarterly wage reports and will search for wages benefit recipients may have earned. If you do not report earnings, you may lose your right to receive benefits or face criminal charges.

Unemployment Payments

In order to speed up the payment process and make things simpler for both the EDD and claimants, in 2011 California began depositing payments into individually assigned EDD debit cards. This has substantially improved the speed in which payments are made and citizens have been very happy with the change. In order to activate your card, you can do so online at https://prepaid.bankofamerica.com/EddCard/Pages/Home.aspx or call


If you wish to have your payments deposited into your personal bank account, you can do so by contacting Bank of America and having funds transferred into your account from your EDD card automatically. You can use the contact information above to do this. The EDD does not handle direct deposit transfers. You will need to provide an email address, otherwise, the bank cannot complete the transfer process.

Reasons for Denial of Benefits

If you do not meet the wage requirements, the EDD will deny benefits. You will receive a Notice of Determination in the mail detailing your wage calculation as the reason for the denial. If you have sufficient wages, you may still be denied for other reasons.

Separation Issues

If you quit your job without a good cause connected to your employment, the EDD will deny your claim for benefits. Quitting because of mere dissatisfaction with your job (not to take a new one), quitting to return to school full-time or quitting because you couldn’t find child care all seem like “good” reasons. Yet, these reasons are not connected to work.

If your employer dismissed you, you may be ineligible. The EDD is required to find that your actions constituted misconduct. “Misconduct” can one a one-time violation of a rule or repeated violations and warnings, as long as the act or acts showed a disregard for the employer’s interests.

While the EDD stresses that misconduct be “connected to work,” employers may dismiss employees for certain actions that occur outside work. Drug use is one of the more common examples, especially when such conduct results in an arrest or affects work performance.

Non-separation issues

Your conduct while receiving benefits can result in a denial. If you:

  • Misrepresented facts in your claim,
  • Failed to report to the EDD when called,
  • Failed to report earnings, or
  • Refused suitable employment

the state may deny benefits. This list is not exclusive; other actions or inactions can cause a denial of benefits.

Quit and Still Eligible

You may have decided to quit your job; however, you may have had a good cause. Some acceptable reasons for quitting could be:

  • Finding a new job while still employed
  • An illness at work (if you are now eligible)
  • Your employer required you to work in unsafe conditions
  • Leaving the area because of a domestic violence situation

If you quit for a good cause, the cause does not always have to be connected to work. You will have to show that you tried repeatedly to remedy the problem before quitting.

Fired and Still Eligible

If the act or actions that caused your employer to dismiss you don’t rise to the level of misconduct, the EDD may approve your claim. One-time violations of policy, mistakes or minor errors in judgement might not be misconduct.

What Happens When Benefits are Denied: The Appeals Process

You have the right to appeal any determination the EDD makes. You have 30 days from the mailing date of the EDD’s decision to file your appeal. The appeal hearing itself will be in front of an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). Your former employer will have the right to appear at the hearing and offer relevant testimony.

For more about the unemployment benefit appeal process, please view our page on California Unemployment Appeals.

Appealing a ruling

If your claim for unemployment benefits was denied, you have the ability to appeal the ruling. The first step in filing an appeal is to send and letter to the EDD containing:

  • Your Name, phone, number, and address
  • Your SSN
  • Reason for appeal

However, it may be simpler to fill out this form provided by the EDD, http://www.edd.ca.gov/pdf_pub_ctr/de1000m.pdf. This letter is included in the rejection notice sent to you as well.

Once the EDD reviews the appeal, they will make a decision. If it’s decided that your appeal does have a basis you will receive a letter from the office of appeals containing a hearing date, time, and location. After the hearing, the final judgment by the Administrative Law Judge will be mailed to you. There will be a phone number on the letter to call in case you have any questions.

Before filing your appeal, make sure that you have new information in regards to why you should be approved. Failure to present new information may result in your claim being denied again.

Contact EDD

Employment Development Department
P.O. Box 826880 – UIPCD, MIC 40
Sacramento, CA 94280-0001

Phone Numbers

English: 1-800-300-5616

Spanish: 1-800-326-8937

Chinese: 1-800-547-3506

Vietnamese: 1-800-547-2058


Here are some valuable resources to use for California Unemployment.

Unemployment Forms


California Unemployment Law


EDD Debit Card


How to use EDD Debit card


Assistance for families


General information



  • Kimberly

    I have been receiving UI benefits to subsidize my income while working part time for a couple months as my employer cut my hours. I found another part time job that pays more. So, I quit the first job and started the new one within the same week. Now, EDD wants to have a telephone interview wanting to know the reason I quit.
    Will I still receive my unemployment to subsidize my income? I’ll only be needing
    it for about 2 more months as I’m buying a business.

  • Bianca

    Me, along with many other employees got laid off last week, due to the company downsizing. I have applied for UI today (8/30) (I was FT employee – W2). The company has approached me to discuss the possibility of being an Independent Contractor (1099).
    My UI claim was just filed today, so the company hasn’t received the call from EDD.

    In CA – if I go from being a W-2 employee to 1099 “Independent Contractor” – will my UI claim be denied?

    Your reply is appreciated – I’m expected to accept/dent in two days.

    • Do not commit to 1099 employment until you have been interviewed and have submitted at least one biweekly claim certification. Technically you could accept since you’ve already applied for benefits, but the employer will say you are still employed, you would be denied and need to appeal in order to prove the timeline. Therefore, WAIT until claim is established to avoid the hassle. You might even get unlucky enough to get an ALJ at appeal who will say since you agreed to work on 1099 a day or two after being terminated on W-2, you are not entitled to benefits. Don’t risk it.

  • Brian

    I work freelance in production/film. I do get w-2’s from my freelance employer…I have never worked a 1099 job. My question, am I eligible for unemployment benefits? I have been out of work for two weeks and don’t know when my next job will be. If I do get benefits would I write my previous employer as Freelance/SE? I don’t think I can write my last employers company name since I am technically not an employee of theirs.

  • Hello,

    The Details,
    Unemployment award in feb2016 – feb2017
    received 6 months payments and exhausted the total amount.

    Refilled Unemployment as of 5/20. Got Award Letter but then Denied By section1277.

    Here is my question. After my benefits were exhausted, in 0ctober, I started to drive for uber.

    AM I ABLE TO USE MY 1099 from UBER to satisfy the returning to work section of 1277?

    thanks for your time.

    • No. CA does not consider UBER drivers as employees. You will satisfy the “work” requirement of Sec 1277, but not the earnings requirement. UBER/SE/IC earnings are not bona fide and, therefore, not covered wages for unemployment benefit purposes.

    • Josh wegman

      I have been receiving benefits for 2 months while looking for work. I have been reporting a commission of $18.30 for a Medicare policy I sold 2 years ago that I get paid monthly on. Now it shows my latest payment as pending. Is this going to deny my benefits some how?

      • CA will want to know the source of this money. Your benefits will be suspended while it investigates. You won’t be denied. Since these are commissions earned on work performed before discharge, you shouldn’t be reporting them, at all. Water over the dam now. Talk to interviewer about how to handle going forward.

  • Joe Thomas

    Hello. Question re: CA UI and denial due to Section 1277 Lag Test.

    Facts: Laid off on a Monday, June 13, 2016. Filed unemployed during that week and was given a claim start date of June 12, 2016. through June 11, 2017. On my lay off date of June 13th I was paid for that days work, June 13th AND vacation/sick/severance. Total check was over $5,000 but earnings on Monday was $288 and with total vacation pay I earned about $2,200 in payment on June 13th.

    It’s my understanding to CLEAR the lag test I needed to have earned $1,300 or more during the prior benefit year of June 12, 2016 to June 11, 2017. Well technically I did as my pay was DURING the prior benefit year on June 13, 2016. And according to the Edd website vacation wages DO qualify to clear a lag test rule but NOT to qualify for a claim.

    The next test of the lag test rule I believe I CLEAR as I did have tiny small in the work force being self employed doing tax work during APril 2017.

    So my question is don’t I qualify to have the Section 1277 disqualification removed? If not, can you please explain why. I see NO mention that the earnings or wages needed to have taken place with a NEW job. The website simply says earn $1,300 during the prior claim period, which in my case is June 12, 2016 to June 11, 2017.

    I told the staff agency I want a FULL time job and permanent job. But I just thought it might benefit me to just accept one of the 2 week jobs she has instead of interviewing for the full time jobs as once I’m laid off from the 2 week temp job won’t I qualify to have the Section 1277 lag test rule removed?

    I appreciate this website. I’m bookmarking it.

    • Even though received during your benefit year, you earned that money and were paid for work performed BEFORE your layoff. Earnings for work done prior to the beginning of your benefit year do not clear the LAG in CA unless they are residuals.

      SE work does meet the “some work” test but SE earnings are not bona fide and also do not clear the LAG. If the SE earnings are at least $1,300, you can petition CA to do a wage investigation and reclassify the earnings if you feel you should have been paid W-2. Read this: https://www.dol.gov/whd/workers/misclassification/

      • Francine Garcia

        I would like to ask a question that sort of relates to the one above regarding the lag test:
        Joe Thomas
        August 15, 2017 at 10:29 am
        Hello. Question re: CA UI and denial due to Section 1277 Lag Test.

        My questions are similar, but different in that I returned to school and was approved for the CTB program and TE (initially denied for length of training period, appealed and the decision was reversed). During this process, I have been given contradicting information from the EDD.

        My current claim period will expire at the end of Jan 2018 ( I can get exact dates if needed). My benefits were exhausted on 8/12/17 and the TE has taken effect with a new claim amount that will last me 6 months. From what I have read in the CUIC, Sections 1269, 1269.1 and 1271, I am confused about whether the lag test actually applies to my situation. I have not worked since my last employer under this claim, but had earnings from Q1 (ending Dec ’16) and Q2 (ending Mar ’17) of my claim from my last employer. Further, one EDD rep told me that I had to earn $1300 in order to file a new claim (I also assume this means I have to be unemployed, due to no fault of my own etc…which seems like an odd requirement for someone in an approved training) in order for me to continue to receive CTB UI benefits that will cover my training period.

        I have read the disclosure about the TE being determined by the claim amount not the length of training, but if I am eligible for a new, possibly reduced claim, this will cover the duration of my training. Thus, understanding this is very important to my situation. To add to the confusion, I am in a self certified approved training and have read that there is a Prior CTB Training Three Year Interval Restriction (Section 1269.1(g)) that almost makes it sound like it is impossible for a self certifying claimant to be allowed to continue past 1 year of training if you are allowed one TE per CTB approved training. Say I can earn $1300 by the 9/30/17 deadline the EDD rep gave me in order to be eligible for a new claim, 1. Does the CTB training cover a new claim period? 2. If so, will I need to request another TE? One rep told me that the TE would kick in after my new claim is filed and that it didn’t matter if I had another employer, only prior earnings, that I just needed to file a new claim and the TE would take effect at that point. I am so sorry for the essay, and really appreciate any information you can provide.

  • MDH

    I was laid off from my full time job of the last five years doing Film/TV/Video Game Research last week on 8/1/17. I was paid out for my remaining vacation pay and will be receiving a small one month severance. I have also been working as freelance writer for the last few years as well. Just as I was laid off from my research job I was offered a freelance assignment that will last until mid-October but will not be able to bill out to receive any payment until all deliverable drafts are turned in for the project. I am trying to determine whether I should file for unemployment now, wait until the end of September which would stay within the same wage base period of April 2016-March 2017 or whether I should just wait until the freelance writing job is complete then file in October which I believe would then shift the wage base period to July 2016-June 2017. Or do I run the risk of not even qualifying for unemployment because of the two and half month freelance writing job? Any answers and advice would be incredibly helpful and appreciated.

    Thank You

    • Or do I run the risk of not even qualifying for unemployment because of the two and half month freelance writing job?

      ^^THIS. If your last employment is freelance/SE, you are ineligible for benefits.

      Your eligibility for a claim is determined by your LAST W-2 employment. Do NOT do any freelance work of any kind until you have applied for benefits, been interviewed, and have submitted at least one bi-weekly claim certification. Further, earnings are to be reported when you WORK, not when you are paid.

      Read page 16 of the California Claimant Handbook, here: http://www.edd.ca.gov/pdf_pub_ctr/de1275a.pdf

      • MDH

        Thanks, Daphne. I’ll file immediately. For what it’s worth, I really couldn’t turn down the assignment but I don’t have any signed contracts as of yet. There is only “a deal” in place and we’ve had a meeting but that is all. That said, I really don’t want my former employer get away with not paying unemployment because of how incredibly awful they were leading up to this scenario. We all knew were getting laid off for months but they refused to inform as to when it would happen while lying to the rest of the company about our division.

  • Danielle

    I recently moved to California from Texas for a job opportunity but was laid off after only one week of work. My question is am I eligible to collect benefits for the money I earned while working in Texas and the money I earned while only work in a week in California?

    • You would file in TX because only TX earnings would appear in your base period. That said, because you quit the TX job, TX would require you work 6 weeks and earn wages equal to 6 x your weekly benefit amount at the new job before it could pay benefits – unless you can prove good cause for the quit from the TX job. If you can prove the CA job was substantially better, TX may waive the 6wk/6xWBA requirement, but you would need to appeal to have TX examine the merits of your case. Process will take at least two months.

      Read Section III, here on good cause: http://www.twc.state.tx.us/news/efte/ui_law_qualification_issues.html#dq-mc

      CA’s requirement to purge the quit would be 5xWBA earnings at the new job – unless you can prove good cause. But, again, with no CA wages in the base period (7/2016-6/2017), CA cannot entertain any claim at this time.

  • Carolyn Koontz

    I was laid off from my job of 8 years, due to restructuring and budget cuts. Since I worked for a non-profit church, am I still eligible for UI benefits? I read online non-profit churches are not required to pay into unemployment. But I was also told, I paid into UI my entire working life (always worked in California) and therefore am still entitled to UI.

    Thank you,

    • You didn’t pay into UI in California, the employer did. Only three states require employees to pay a minuscule tax for unemployment insurance.

      That said, in most states nonprofits are not allowed exclusion from unemployment insurance benefits.

      Read this, in particular “Payroll Taxes.” http://www.taxes.ca.gov/exemptbus.shtml

      Absolutely apply in California. One way (via tax) or another (reimburse California), that employer will be paying for your benefits.

  • Heather

    After working a hospital job for 2 years I was terminated from my job in February 2017. I was on unemployment until I got a new job that paid less than my old job in May 2017. I have been working there for 3 month now but I want to quit because I feel I am unfit for this new job. If I quit can I reopen my claim? If so for how long?

  • Patti

    I worked for the County in Ca for over 17 years, I moved to NM and worked there for about a year. I got let go and was able to collect UE for 6 months till my funds ran out from that state. I have not been able to find employment in the past 9 months. So I moved back to Ca. can I collect UE here from my years with the county?

    • No. There aren’t any CA wages on which to base a claim because, filing now, CA will use base period April 1, 2016-March 31, 2017. The time to have filed in CA was when you lost the NM job when you probably still had three-six months’ CA wages in the base period to support a CA claim. When the CA benefits were exhausted after six months, you could then have filed in NM. Essentially, you could have had two back to back claims in different states within the same twelve-month period.

  • Vanessa

    I lost my job because my license was suspended for 30-days due to a DUI. My job description included maintaining a valid California driver’s license. My UI claim was denied. Will an appeal help?
    Also, I had requested a leave of absence from my employer, hoping to avoid losing my job…which was denied….would that help the appeal?

  • Jerald sayson

    I applied for ui on 6/25/17 received benefits for the two week period I certiftied for the next two week period 6/25/17-7/08/17 but I have a phone interview on the 7/13/17 will I still recieve benefits

  • Liz

    The school district I worked for cashed out my sick hours at the end of June and they “laid me off” on the first week of May. I reported the sick leave and now I have an interview to determine my eligibility. I wasn’t aware I had sick hours since I’m a substitute. Any advice for the interview? Anything helps thanks. This is my first time collecting benefits so I’m unsure of any of the process. I have been looking and applying for work every week. My sick pay was over my wba. Also, I wanted to know if I would be able to receive my next payment since the interview is after the next time I certify? Thanks.

    • You were laid off. That’s what you tell CA. CA has an unpaid waiting week which may be put forward because of the sick pay. In other words, the first week of discharge (sick pay) and the following (unpaid waiting week) will not be paid. Thereafter, CA will pay you retro for all weeks claimed when CA approves the claime – usually a week or two after the interview. Keep claiming.

      • Liz

        Even though I already served my first week unpaid (when I first applied and got benefits), because of the sick pay I will have to serve another unpaid week? EDD already didn’t pay me for the week in which I got the sick pay (6/26-7/1). When I certify for the weeks of 7/2-7/8 and 7/9-7/15, I would not get any payments because of the sick pay and a unpaid waiting week? Sorry, its very confusing, I’m not sure if I’m understanding it correctly. Thanks.

        • If you’ve already claimed both weeks and the system states you will not paid for either, those weeks are behind you. CA will pay you for the other weeks claimed when the claim is approved.

  • jessica

    Hi my work permit expired but its still in process, so i had gotten a job a day before my permit expires and then i was told i needed to wait. So unemployment cut me off but i sent them prove showing that im trying my best that i even got two jobs waiting for me when i have my permit i sent in receipts of the immigration process im under DACA program . So i receive a notice saying . Your former employer has appealed the departments decision finding you eligible, ..if the admin law judge who presides over your employer appeal hearing finds you not eligible your benefits will stop”. What can i do im homeless i have bills i worked for almost two years i was always hard working i always stayed overtime ots just some unfair things that happened but unemployment found me eligible and i was receiving my benefits and then this work permit is taking longer than usual. Obviously i sent them all i could to pove that im trying my best and that i even got a job already they are just anxious for me to get my permit too i dong have any more proof to tell the judges what can i say to him for them to understand my situation not trying to say something that isnt in my best interest to tell them but honestly im just saying the truth and i dont have anything to hide that company is just trying to sabotage me im homeless i have three dogs i dont have anything i just fell in a bad with bad people the place where i got a job waiting for me even said to me ” ive heard things about the place before i need help please the state already said they find me eligible

    • It doesn’t matter why you lost your permit. If you don’t have a work permit, you are ineligible for benefits for the period of time you are without a permit. CA is very claimant- friendly and should not stop your benefits entirely, but CA cannot pay you benefits for the period of time you have no permit as you are not Able and Available to work. There must be agencies in CA who can help people in your situation. Try Legal Aid – perhaps they can find you help.

  • Jay


    I took on a new job and after a week they let me go for not being the right fit for them. I think a lot of it had to do with my inability to communicate verbally in Portuguese (Brazilian-founded company). I know was on a 90 day probationary period.

    I’ll be looking for work as soon as possible, but does the “probationary” period disqualify me from being able to apply for unemployment in CA?

    • No. Recently, CA wrongly denied a benefit to someone on a probationary period. That denial was reversed on appeal. If you have a decent work history going back three-six months, you should qualify for benefits in CA.

  • Liz

    I apologize but I have another question. My work cashed out my sick hours. Do I need to report this during certification? The amount is over my wba. Thanks for your help.

  • Liz


    I am a substitute for a school district in California and was able to collect UI benefits because the district laid me off on the first week of May before the end of the school fiscal year with reasonable assurance because I maxed out the number of days I can work for the district. I can begin working for the district again in July but because it is the summer there are very few assignments. My coworker is taking 3 days off in July and has offer me the shifts, I want to take them but I don’t want to lose my UI benefits. If I work those 3 days, I’ll make more than my weekly benefit amount. The reason I’m hesitating because work for the district is not assured and I don’t want to be ineligible for my claim and lose benefits for only 3 shifts. My question is if I can still collect UI benefits despite accepting those 3 days? The total would be only 21 hours.

    • Benefits for educators are tricky. I wouldn’t do anything which would result in the claim closing, requiring you to talk with a rep to reopen. Income in excess of your WBA will result in no benefit paid for that week and CA suspending your claim. You would need to call CA to reopen and explain why the revenue stopped. The fact you are an educator creates issues and extra scrutiny you don’t need. Tell this coworker no.

      • Liz

        Thanks for the quick response I really appreciate it. Also, I wanted to know if I work a temporary job would I still be able to continue collecting UI benefits during the temp job and then afterwards? The temporary job is 3 days in mid July, I’m not sure yet how many hours in total but the pay rate is 13 dollars and assuming I work 8 hours each day the amount would be over my wba. The temp job is a staffing service and I would be working in a convention center. Thanks.

        • No. It doesn’t matter what work you do, the fact you are collecting as an educator opens your claim to all sorts of scrutiny if you need to call CA to reopen because you’ve earned to much or the earnings stop. Risk it if you wish – it may work out – but I wouldn’t chance it. I’m surprised CA has found a way to paying you at all. Leave well enough alone – unless you are willing to risk a suspension and possible appeal in order to get your benefits back.

  • Jennifer

    I’ve been working for a company for over 4 years now and my set schedule has been 7-4 for a while now so I have other commitments at 5 pm (school). They are now trying to change my location of work to where I won’t be able to make it to school on time and they might fire me if I cant move locations or I may have to quit. Would I qualify for unemployment?

    • First, do not quit. Wait for the discharge. When you apply for benefits, cite a material change in your employment contract as to location which prevents you attending school. You will be initially denied and need to appeal. CA ALJ’s are the most claimant-friendly in the country. Even then, if the new location is a reasonable distance, your inability to work at this location may be deemed a personal issue. Your chances are only 50/50, but by all means appeal. CA ALJs issue some surprising rulings.

  • Leyna

    I am in the middle of a divorce and I am going to loose my place to live and so far all I can find is a place out of state. If I have to move out of state because I have no other living arrangements and have to quit my job can I collect unemployment?

  • Calicali

    I just did my phone interview yesterday when should I hear about it being approved or denied? Also when I claimed my weeks while waiting I didn’t know how to list all jobs I’ve searched for and need to edit it. How do I fix that ?

    • You’ll hear in three-four weeks. You only need to list as many jobs as the form allows. Don’t worry about edits. No one looks at this. Just as long as the blanks are filled in. If you’ve searched for more, fine. Keep a personal log on your job searches. In rare instances, CA may call you in for a review of your resume and work searches. You will need your log for that.

  • Angela

    Hi, my 26-week regular UI benefits are expiring in 8 weeks and I’ve been actively searching for a job. Do you know if as of June 2017, California offers any extended benefits? What do I do to apply for any available extended benefits?

  • Ellie

    I read about the severance and unemployment issue but still confused. Recently layed of in CA and will be getting severance, I have signed up for unemployment but not yet activated or received any check from them. Can I wait until:
    my severance is finished ?
    …and then “activate” my unemployment ?
    How long do I have before I lose my unemployment insurance ?
    will my taxes be affected if I took both at the same time ?

    My accountant said I should find these answers on Google. I think I need a new accountant ?
    thank you so very much -Ellie

    • Severance has no effect on unemployment benefits in CA. You can collect severance AND unemployment benefits at the same time. You have one year from the date you apply to collect your 26 weeks. Unless, for tax reasons, you don’t want all 26 weeks in this year’s income, start submitting your weekly claim certifications now. Otherwise, begin claiming 26 weeks before your benefit year expires. Of course, if you find another job before then and can’t claim, you lose those benefits.

  • Jason

    i was employed for 8 years at a company , Started looking for another job while still working . Some time passed and i received a better job offer with a different company . I put in my resignation ( 2 week notice ) and after the two weeks ended the company that had promised the position had lost work and could no longer employee me as previously promised . i was denied unemployment benefits due to this and was told to apply for appeal , In my 30 years of working i have never had to file for unemployment and was unsure if i am able to due to me technically putting in resignation ? Am i able to appeal due to the promise of the second employer ?

  • Violet Lobosco

    Hi, I was working for a company for almost two years and they fired me because I left early almost one hour before end my shit I did the application for unemployment just wondering if I qualify?? Or not??

    • You’ll be denied and need to appeal. At the appeal, you present your reasons for leaving early – family emergency, etc. In CA, one-time occurrences of this type normally will result in the denial being overturned. It ALWAYS pays to appeal in CA, so ignore the denial and file an appeal.

  • Sam

    I was employed for 15+ years, then was laid off earlier this year. My severance is “on hold” and I’m coming up on 4 months of not yet being paid (that’s a whole other story). I’ve also never been on UI benefits before. Long story short, I have a phone interview with EDD scheduled soon regarding why I marked on my form that I refused a job offer. I’m a nervous about it and wondering if a 40% reduction in pay or crappy benefits offered are valid reasons. If not, would telling EDD that the company’s/president’s credibility is questionable? Please advice. I initially accepted the job offer (although 40% less that what I was making) out of excitement, I guess. But later further researched the company and questioned their credibility knowing that the entire staff was new and when they did something shady and used my resume (verbatim) as a job posting AFTER I initially accepted. Disrespectful, don’t you think? I didn’t have the guts to call the president on it, but a few days later, I rescinded the offer. How can I avoid losing my UI benefits? I really need the funds until my severance comes. Thanks, in advance.

    • You are not required to accept UNSUITABLE work. Pay 40% below your previous work is unsuitable. Unsuitable work is defined as work below your previous salary (usually more than 20%), job duties outside your skill set, a location too far away from home, etc. Do not overthink this. The pay was too far below your previous work. Period. Don’t make it any harder than that.

      Per CA:

      While work that pays within prevailing may be suitable under Section 1259, it may not be suitable for the particular claimant. Section 1258 provides that the claimant’s prior training, experience, and earnings shall also be taken into consideration when determining the suitability of offered employment.


  • Hello, I’m in CA and I was wondering if anyone knows what happens when your CTB approved training ends, but there are still benefits available? I have a total of 52 weeks available. I exhausted the first 26 weeks, then got an Training extension of about 6 weeks, now that training is coming to an end. I should have about 21 on my original claim available. Will I still get these benefits?

    Thank you.

  • Nicole

    I live in California and I have been employed full time for 3 years. In December 2016, we had a change in management and by February 2017, my schedule got reduced down to 32 hours. Yesterday, I found out that my schedule will further be reduced down and that I will only be working approximately 18-20 hours a week. My boss assumed I was already looking for a new job when they cut the 1st 8 hrs a week. I honestly feel like they want me to quit since it seems they are trying to fade my position out. I am confused regarding partial unemployment. Am I able to collect partial unemployment payments in my situation? And what happens if I have quit this job because I can’t pay my bills, which would force me to move out of state to live with my Father. Which I don’t want to do, but I I am already struggling and in debt with only 8 hours cut. In a couple weeks, I’m not sure how I’m going to make things work while only making 300/week or less ( and that is before taxes!). I am worried that if I quit, I won’t be eligible for unemployment. I cannot afford to wait months to appeal if it came it to that. I’d lose my apartment by then. Is it better for me to quit and then file for unemployment? Or is it better for me to continue working very part time with present company and file for partial unemployment? I am 41 years old, and I can’t afford any mistake on my part when it comes to filing. I need it temporarily, as much as I wish I didn’t. Thank you, in advance, for any advice that you may be able to offer me.

    • Yes, you can apply for unemployment benefits on the basis of reduced hours. Working part-time won’t help you very much, financially – although it might buy you some time until you can find other work.

      CA deducts 75% of your gross pay from its weekly benefit and pays you the difference. As an example, assume your benefits are based on full-time wages of $7,800 a quarter ($600/wk), your CA benefit would be $300 wk. If you continue to work part-time earning $300 wk, CA will deduct 75% of $300, or $225, from your weekly benefit of $300, and pay you $75. In effect, your gross income for the week between benefits and wages will be $375. If you take this route, change your withholding with your employer so that no federal or state taxes, other than FICA, are withheld. Also, opt out of tax withholding on your unemployment benefits.

      You certainly can quit because you have experienced a material change in your employment contract. You were a full-time worker, have essentially been discharged from that full-time job, and have now been offered unsuitable part-time work. A 50% hours reduction is a material change in the employment contract, imposing serious financial hardship, which will eventually cause loss of housing – which, in CA is another good cause reason for a quit.

      However, nothing happens overnight in CA. If you quit, CA generally initially denies benefits – even in obvious in cases like yours, only to have the decision overturned on appeal. So, from time of application until you are paid would be about two months – unless you get very lucky with the interviewer.

      Read this, II. Eligible – DD:


      Most CA precedent decisions expect claimant to look for other work while working a reduced schedule which is why, if you quit, you may experience a denial initially, although federal labor law is very clear that when a material change in the employment contract occurs – i.e., full-time to part-time – you have been discharged and offered new unsuitable work – should win at appeal. You must be sure to demonstrate financial hardship at appeal – although, generally, that will fall on deaf ears when pleading your case to the interviewer.

      You should also read this:


  • Christi

    I live in CT, and resigned from my job Jan 31, to relocate to CA, where my fiancé recently moved to for his job. Week before moving, his company notified him that the relo has been suspended and they were terminating his employment as of April 1. He will be coming back to CT and searching for a new job.

    Question: Am I eligible to file for Unemployment as I had quit my job to move to CA, but now that he is being let go, I never made it out there. And if so, would I file for unemployment in CT or CA?

    Thank you.

    • NO. For a couple of reasons. Trailing spouse benefits in CT are paid only to military spouses. Second, you weren’t married. Most states require an actual marriage. CA will recognize an imminent marriage. However, you have no earnings in California. You can certainly apply in CT – you have nothing to lose.

  • Anonymous

    What are my chances of appealing my CA UI benefits to the Board if the ALJ has denied my appeal? I was terminated from my job sue to misconduct for data entry errors. My supervisor put me on a 90 day probation which after 86 days, I was terminated due to other errors that I accidentally committed. The errors were not malicious or intentional. The ALJ stated my performance failed to improve during my probation period, resulting in my termination. What are my chances to appeal this for a 2nd time?

    • That is a very unusual ruling for California. Further, it is wrong. Inability to do the work is not misconduct. Your position is I always tried as hard as I could, I did the best that I could, I took extra training/practice (if you can verify this) and still could not improve.

      CA UIBDG on poor performance: http://www.edd.ca.gov/UIBDG/Misconduct_MC_300.htm

      Read that section carefully and craft your argument on and cite the UIBDG. I am *smh* at that ruling. It is wrong – and VERY out of character for California.

      By all means appeal.

      • Anonymous

        Thank you you kindly for your informative response. How do I craft my response to the Appeal Borad? Do I reference the UIBDG in my argument?

        • You quote from the UIBDG and cite the actual section after you’ve quoted the language.. If you need help drafting the argument, visit Legal Aid – or, if you know a paralegal or legal secretary, get their assistance.

          Here is a link to CA predecent decisions.


          Probation period is an issue when there is a violation, but otherwise does not affect benefit eligibility. You need to make that point in your brief, as well.

          If you can, post the actual language of the decision. ALJ should have cited the statute/precedent case for his ruling. I’m interested in the basis for the ruling.

          • Anonymous

            Again, thank you very much for all your help.

            The ALJ written decision is as follows:

            Reason for Decision:

            An individual is disqualified for benefits if he or she has been discharged for misconduct connected with his or her most recent work. (Unemployment Insurance Code, section 1256.)

            “Misconduct connected with the work” is a substantial breach by the claimant of an important duty or obligation owed to the employer, willful or wanton in character, and tending to injure the employer. (Precedent Decision P-B-3, citing Maywood Glass Co. v. Stewart (1959) 170 Cal.App.2.d 719.)

            The legislative declared public policy of the state requires the extension of unemployment insurance benefits to persons “unemployed through no fault of their own.” (Unemployment insurance code, section 100.) Accordingly, fault is the basic element to be considered in interpreting and applying section 1256, and the test for misconduct is essentially volitional. (Rowe v. Hansen (1974) 41 Cal.App.3d 512.)

            The term “misconduct” does not necessarily imply an evil or corrupt motive or an actual intent to injure or damage an employer’s interests. It is sufficient if the act, or the failure to act, was committed or omitted under such circumstances that the employee should have known that injury or damage to his or her employer’s interests would probably result. (Precedent Decision P-B-14.)

            In Paratransit, Inc. v. Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board (2014) 59 Cal.4th 551, the California Supreme Court held that an employee’s refusal to sign a disciplinary warning represented only a good faith error of judgment rather than misconduct because (1) the employee reasonably believed that he was entitled to union representation before signing the warning and that the signing of the warning would constitute an admission of guilt concerning allegations he disputed, and (2) there was no indication that the employee’s refusal interfered with the orderly conduct of the employer’s business or injured , or threatened to injure, the employer’s interest in any consequential of substantial way. It was noted that the employee had received no prior warnings for insubordination, and that insubordination amounting to misconduct generally entails cumulative acts with prior reprimands or warnings.

            In Precedent Decision P-R-279 the claimant was told the employer might be moving the plant to a location where the time and cost of commuting would have been excessive for the claimant. The claimant left the job after securing other work closer to her home. The appeals board held the claimant left with good cause.

            In this instance, the claimant breached a duty owed to her employer for failing to improve her performance after being given written and verbal warnings and counseling and placed on a 90-Day probationary period. The claimant’s performance failed to improve despite being given the opportunity to demonstrate her intent to change her behavior. The claimant was discharged for misconduct as determined under code section 1256 and benefits are denied.

            The departments determination is affirmed. The claimant is disqualified as determined under code section 1256 and benefits are denied.

          • Probation is not the basis for the decision. That decision cites “willful wanton volitional misconduct.” Somehow this ALJ interpreted your inability to do the work as intentional. The UIBDG is very clear on this issue. Very, very bizarre ruling for California unless there were insubordination elements in your separation which led him to believe you intentionally performed below your ability and/or disregarded employer rules.

            Get help writing your response – and focus on the actual definition of misconduct. Good luck.

          • Anonymous

            I wanted to thank you for providing such helpful feedback on my unemployment appeal. I submitted my appeal to the Appeal Board and the decision was reversed. It’s been 7 days since the first payment was supposedly issued, however, I have yet to receive my debit card in the mail. I am owed over $5,000 and I’m so behind financially with my expenses. I made numerous calls the their office only to be told by an automated service that they exceeded the number of callers and I should try my call later. Do You know of another way to get answers on my payment status? Thank you again!

          • Thanks for the update on the decision. It’s always helpful to hear the end of the story.

            You need a debit card. Start dialing 1-800-300-5616 early a.m. starting before 8 a.m., and keep dialing until you get an answer. When you hear the welcome message, press 1 for English, followed by 5-1-1-0. You should be put in a queue and eventually get to a rep who can deal with getting you a card.

            The other alternative, until you get the card, is to visit a local one-stop office with past-due notices on utility or other bills and the ruling in your favor. Sometimes those offices will cut a check – possibly for benefits for a few weeks. I’m not sure how much they can pay you on the spot.

  • Jacquie Van Huss

    I appealed my denial of benefits, based on I was denied for NOT earning over $1300 within the period. I did earn $1864 during the period so I appealed. I had the appeal hearing on March 6th and submitted the payroll registry showing the earnings and dates. I then received a call from a lady on March 9th stating she was from EDD and she received the Administrative Law Judge’s decision, which she felt was wrong and proceeded to tell me that the decision would be forwarded to the Appeals Board, which will definitely be overturning the judges decision BUT she had a question on my earnings. I answered her questions and she then told me that I did not physically work for those wagers as my employer had terminated me on a Tuesday and paid me for the whole week, I said acted yes and she said so I wouldn’t qualify because I did not PHYSICALLY WORK. I then asked her but the hudge reviewed the evidence at my hearing and ruled in my favor. She replied that SHE cannot change the judge’s ruling and it will be input into the system but the weeks that I certified prior to the hearing would be paid but I will have to pay them back once the Appeals Board overturns the judge’s decision.
    After all that said, I have received the judge’s decision but have not received anything else and on the EDD online site my weekly certifications say NOT PAID $0.00. This woman also said that I would be receiving a form that explains the process and an option NOT to receive any benefits until the Appeals Board reviews. I STILL HAVE NOT RECEIVED ANYTHING stating this!!!! And I cannot certify on line for the past 2 weeks but was able to “tele-cert”. Please help!

    • Sounds like you are reapplying for a new claim when your first benefit year expired and are trying to clear a LAG.

      Under Section 1277 of the CA Code, two elements are necessary in order to requalify for a claim in CA. During the prior benefit year, you must have:

      1. Earned new wages after discharge of $1,300 in a quarter, or $900 in a high quarter plus $225 outside that quarter


      2. Demonstrated an attachment to the labor market in the form of WORK – AFTER you have been discharged.

      You don’t meet either of the two criteria.

      Although you were paid $1,864 the week you were discharged, this money was earned PRIOR to discharge. Further, you did not actually work after the date of discharge. Therefore, those are not NEW earnings – and you have not demonstrated an attachment to the labor market after discharge.

      Know that when ALJs make wrong decisions in CA, the Appeal Review Division will initiate another board review. You definitely got a wrong decision.

      You are not entitled to benefits no matter what your ALJ/Judge said. You must have WORKED after date of discharge to demonstrate an “attachment to the labor market” in order to qualify for a new claim on the basis of your LAG one year later and must have earned NEW WAGES per #1 above.

      Don’t expect a positive result here, unless you can prove you (1) actually did work and (2) earned new bona fide (W-2) wages AFTER your date of discharge.

      Read Section D., here: http://www.edd.ca.gov/UIBDG/Miscellaneous_MI_15.htm

  • Andrew


    I was a college student and worked at a company in the bay area over the summer from May to August 2015. I then went to school and got a job, again in the Bay Area, after graduation. I worked there from June to August 2016. They laid me off because they had to make cuts. I applied for unemployment and received about 13 weeks of benefits at a rate of $305 per week, then the payments stopped. I was making substantially more in my last job and would have qualified for the maximum benefits, but I was employed for such a short time that it was still the most recent quarter and so I received benefits based on my summer job the summer prior. It is now March and I tried reapplying since now I should be eligible to receive the highest rate based on my most recent salary. I just received a letter saying “we are unable to process your application because benefits are exhausted on a claim that has not expired. Please contact the department 1-5 days prior to 08/19/2017 to determine if you are eligible for a later claim.”

    Did I mistakenly disqualify myself for future benefits? I thought I was eligible for 26 weeks. Any light you can shed on this would be much appreciated.

    • You are only allowed one claim in any 52-week period, and are given those 52 weeks to collect the benefits awarded under that claim. The amount paid is determined by earnings in the base period used for that claim. The earnings in your base period only allowed for CA to pay 13 weeks benefits, not 26.

      The earliest you can reapply is in August at the end of the 52-week period – and only if you have worked at earned at least $1,300 in a quarter, or $900 in one quarter and another $225 outside that high quarter since you first applied for benefits in August 2016.

      Sounds like you may have new earnings, so you should qualify in August, but no earlier. Otherwise, if you haven’t worked since last August, get yourself any kind of work between now and August so when you reapply in August, CA can establish a claim based on those earnings and any LAG (unused earnings) from the earlier claim.

  • mandu

    My contract work will end next week ( I was working on a w2 as a contractor) can I apply now and indicate my last work day as 03/22/2017. or do I need to wait ? as I noticed it will take process time for couple of weeks …..I am going to apply for the first time so please advice

    • If this is your only job since Jan. 2016, then wait until April 2nd to apply. CA will use earnings through 3/31/2017.

      Otherwise, when you file depends on what other wages are in your base period going back to October 2015. Waiting until April 2nd to apply captures another quarter of wages in your base period, but this may not be necessary depending on earlier earnings. Further, waiting to apply may waste a quarter of wages which could be better utilized in your LAG for a possible 2nd claim a year from now.

      You provide no specific dates or actual earnings history, so a more specific answer isn’t possible.

  • Hal

    I live in California. I had used the UI online successfully to certify for a several months. In December, the UI online program was having problems…it was crashing when I tried certifying. I retried a couple days later and it appeared to complete. However, EDD has no record of the completed certification. Unfortunately, the UI online problem had a domino effect. As a result, the EDD didn’t send me an email reminder for the next certification period. By the time I realized that, the two week grace period passed, and my account was marked inactive. During that grace period, my focus was on caring for my wife who was ill (she has with stage IV cancer).
    When I reactivated my account, it didn’t allow me to go back and certify the weeks missed. After two in person visits to the EDD, they finally set up a phone interview to determine eligibility. Weeks after receiving the call, I received a letter that I was denied eligibility for those four weeks in December.
    I would like to file an appeal with the judge. I have computer history records of my attempts to certify as well as notices published that the UI was experiencing issues.
    What approach do you recommend? Will they consider my wife’s situation as a hardship (I can also present documentation that confirms her illness)? Thanks.

    • As sympathetic as CA ALJs are, they may not allow payment of the two weeks you forgot to claim. However, it always pays to appeal in California, so do so. You may get at least two of those weeks, retro – possibly all of them. You won’t know if you don’t try. More appeals in CA are won than lost. Meanwhile, an easier way, if your benefit year has not yet expired, is to resume claiming now the balance that remains. Good luck.

    • Jen

      Hi Hal;
      My situation is similar to yours and I am wondering what is the result of your appeal? Thank you

  • Patti

    I’m in the middle of my benefit period and got a job. It’s starting out as part time during training. I understand about reporting my wages, but do I need mark that I am available and still looking for work?

  • rocky

    hi , i was terminated because i was supposedly yelling across the room for a supervisor for help , mind you it is not unusual for us to do that (talk over people to get help or have to find a supervisor for help ) or the director to try to advice a room of more than 100 people to get out of a certain extension on the phone.

    when my supervisor arrived to my desk she started asking me why i was so evil and rude and then continued to talk about a previous encounter we had in witch i called in and her reply was you always call in , your just going to make it up in overtime’,

    all i told her that day was that her job was not to attack me of why i was calling in and just take it down and i would just be in trouble for minor attendance issues not firing grounds

    i have no prev warnings , i have complained about it to them before in writing that constantly being ignored there is nobody to help nothing changed

    it also says that when she arrived to my desk i showed anger and frustration that included profanity rudeness and insults to my supervisor ,

    i never started insulting her and i never used profanity

    it states in the paper also that it was overheard by coworkers they said they had three people saying that i did use profanity ,but other people around that were interviewed that told me that they told them i did not use profanity , more than four people can back me up with that ,

    please help me can i fight it i really didn’t do anything wrong

    • Your post is way too long, so I’ve edited it down to the important issues.

      If you haven’t already done so, immediately request an appeal. All you have to say is “I disagree with this decision. I request an appeal hearing.” The hearing will probably be scheduled a month from now.

      At the appeal hearing, if your employer turns up, which they often don’t, you present your case. You didn’t use profanity, it was common to talk loudly, you were merely asking for assistance. You query the employer on exactly what words of profanity were used. If they have no witnesses to support her story, it is hearsay. Which you so state at the hearing. If you have witnesses who are willing to appear at the hearing to support your version of events, try to get them to appear with you. If employer is a no-show, you admit to nothing, and you should win by default.

      Know that CA is a very claimant-friendly state. One-time occurrence, no previous warning – usually always results in claimant getting benefits on appeal.

      • rocky

        thank u for your response i really appreciate it i dont know anything about this :{ , i think she will show up if so how can i present my case i feel like what i just said was nothing but the truth but i dont want to incriminate myself i dont know the right words use ,should i use what i just wrote at the hearing ,? and on the reason part when filing i want to put that i was talking over people to get assistance is that something that they would see as minor and not something to deny me over , thank you , and anyone that helps , this was definitely a lesson

        • I don’t understand – are you talking about the actual appeal hearing or the REQUEST for the appeal. At this point, you don’t put anything in writing other than “I disagree with this decision. I request an appeal hearing.” For reason: The decision is wrong.

          At the hearing, as I said, you question employer on your exact words, if this has happened before, if this was an ongoing issue why weren’t you warned. If she doesn’t bring witnesses, it is hearsay. If everyone talks loudly in your work environment, unless you’ve been warned about it and this warning is documented, it is a nonissue.

          CA ALJ’s look for reasons to grant benefits, so go in knowing you are right and stay calm.

          • rocky

            thank u so much , i havent applied at all i have just been looking for a job

            i dont think ill have them be able to be witnesses for me i think they will think it will jeopardize their job but my coworkers told me that when they were interviewed they asked them if heard me cursing they said no

  • Kay

    My unemployment benefits expired and I filed a new claim. I received a Notice of unemployment award that says my claim beginning date of 01/22/2017, the maximum benefit amount and the weekly amount. I have tried to certify for my benefits i waited for 2 weeks before i tried and it will not let me certify. What should I do? I did not receive anything regarding and interview. Thank you

    • The Notice of Insurance Award is not an approval. Did you work during your first benefit year? CA may need to investigate your wages before it allows you to claim. Two weeks after filing a new clam is a little soon to be able to claim – even for a second year claim established when the first claim expires. If you haven’t worked since filing a year ago, then you will get a letter from CA saying you don’t meet the earnings requirements of Section 1277.

  • Jeremy R

    I had the misfortune of having a mistake in my personal info for the EDD application in California that somehow negated my financial benefits data in my profile, stating that I was qualified to receive $0 per week. So I had to resubmit the data in order to get it all aligned. This had to be done by mail so another two weeks went by before I got another response with my corrected profile in place. Now I’ve gone in there and had to ‘reopen” my claim such that I have to wait another two weeks before filing for my first benefits. Is there any precedent for getting them to pay me for those four weeks that I’ve just lost? I was looking for work that whole time but I don’t think I could make claim because they would just process my benefits value at $0 anyways. Total madness.

    • Unlike most states, CA is pretty flexible on allowing late-claimed weeks. Call and speak to a rep. Unless your claim has an entirely new beginning year benefit date, CA should be able to send you claim forms for those weeks or tell you how to get the claim backdated so you can claim those weeks.

  • David

    Does anyone know how long the edd can take to process the claim? Are they required to give an answer with in a certain time period?

    • Generally, if a straightforward layoff with no issues, you might get an approval within three weeks. If you are fired and/or employer raises issues, approval could take several weeks longer. Three weeks after application is the earliest in most states you can expect to see any money.

  • Martine Kelsch

    My husband’s claim benefit will end soon. But he hasn’t found work yet!! There are no extensions in California??

  • Ryan

    I got this message after my CBT training extension completion. Just want to get clarification if I am still eligible to open a new claim since I am still unemployed? Need some guidance on what I can do while looking for a job after my CBT training. Thank you.

    “Claim Expired

    Your claim has expired and benefits are no longer payable on this claim for week ending dates after 01/21/2017. If you are still unemployed or partially unemployed then you must file a new claim. The fastest way to file your new claim is by using eApply4UI or visit the Ways to File Your UI Claim page.”

    • File a new claim, of course. CA is a very claimant-friendly state and may have special rules for people once these programs are completed. You should speak to a rep if you can rather than file online – and talk to your CBT counselor, if you have one.

  • SL

    Great resource, thank you so much!

    The EDD website says to apply once you loose your job, but what if you know your hours/pay is being cut? I was just put on notice that I would be dropped from salary to hourly with only 25% of my salary wages in March. Can I apply now because I know it is coming? I can not afford to wait a month before being approved/paid unemployment benefits. Thank you!

    • You could try applying now. It may be a bit early for CA to process the claim. Try to speak with a rep and explain the situation. Otherwise, if you apply the week before the hours cut is to take effect, CA should take the claim.

      CA will reduce your benefit by 75% of your part-time earnings. Check out your weekly benefit amount here – and do the numbers:


      The weekly benefit is generally about 50% of your regular pay, from which will be deducted 75% of your part-time earnings. You probably won’t be seeing a particularly substantial net benefit.

      Generally, you have grounds for a quit with a 75% reduction in pay and I assume benefits, as well. This is a material change to terms of employment – effectively discharging from your full-time job and the offer of new unsuitable part-time work (sans benefits), instead.

      Know that you cannot keep this job working part-time and then quit later once the unemployment claim is established and retain your benefits.

      One other thing you can do is immediately change your payroll withholdings so that no taxes, other than FICA, are deducted – even before this hours reduction – and stash the money. That will help mitigate, to a small degree, the financial hit until you have better idea of what to do next. You can review your tax picture again later in the year when things stabilize.

  • Janie

    Nice forum! I will be filing for unemployment due to a significant RIF. About a month later I leave on an out of country vacation. I of course do not want to either miss my call to establish eligibility nor claim for those two weeks I will be gone. How long does it take for CA EDD take to schedule these calls? How do they handle the temporary lapse in availability for work?

    • CA should schedule the interview before you leave. Normally, in CA, interviews take place two-three weeks after application. You do not need to participate in this interview to be approved – especially if there are no issues with your separation.

      While you are out of the country stop claiming. When no benefits are paid, the claim will close. When you return to the US, REOPEN the claim. You may be able to do this online, but CA will still need questions answered, so try to REOPEN by speaking with rep. Your reason, of course, is that you were out of the country and not searching for work, which is perfectly acceptable.

  • paul dubray

    I am doing some research concerning laying off employees for a seasonal time period of 60 days. (2-1-2017 to 4-1-2017), Will they be eligible for unemployment for that time frame with the promise of being rehired April 1, 2017? All the employees have been working for this company for this past year 2016.

    • Promise of ‘rehire’ in April is meaningless. They are unemployed until they begin to work again no matter for whom and are required to search for work in order to claim benefits.

      Of course, they are eligible. In CA, if employer is willing to file a a Notice of Reduced Earnings, DE 2063, work searches may be waived.

      Read this: http://www.edd.ca.gov/unemployment/Partial_Claims.htm

      Otherwise, those laid off will need to do weekly work searches while claiming and be available to accept other work if offered.

      • Shauna Moore

        I was fired due to an error in my jobs computer that managed my hours. I had 17 unpaid time off hours available and within 2 days it was -25 though I missed no time at work since the day I checked and had 17 hours available. My job abruptly took hours from me resulting in me going negative upt and a member in HR said “computer’s make mistakes.” And I was still responsible do I qualify

        • You will be denied and need to appeal. CA ALJ’s are claimant-friendly. Present evidence of these events, and you will get benefits. Process will take about two months.

          I answered an identical situation yesterday. Search this page for “Jones.” Are you that poster? Employer was Amazon.

  • Jennifer

    Hello – I was discharged from my employer on 8/29/2016. I had a previous claim (from 01/2016 after company I worked for was sold). that I reopened on 8/29/2016. Benefits ran out on 12/4/2016, and my account said I could re-open claim on 1/21/2017 (today), which I just did. I worked from 4/25/2016 – 8/29/2016. I know the claim is based on the previous quarters. I am just curious how calculations will work, since I don’t have a full quarter – (ie. April, May, June) or (July, Aug, Sept) since my start date was end of April (beginning of a quarter) and end date was end of August, but I do have a total of 4 months of wages, so how will EDD calculate my base wages. Also, I did not have wage data available, even though I asked previous (Last) employer if they could provide, so I just left all the wage information blank. I just figured that EDD would go to their database and pull the numbers that way.

    • Examine your base period from the Jan. 2016 claim. It will include earnings either through 9/30/2015 or 12/31/2015. The period of time between the end of your base period (9/30/2015 or 12/31/2015) and January 17, 2016 (CA backdates claims to the Sunday of the week you apply) is your LAG (unused earnings).

      The new claim will be based on earnings in this LAG and any new earnings between either 10/01/2015-09/30/2016 or 01/01/2016-12/31/2016, depending on base period used.

      Weekly benefit is based on high quarter earnings in the new base period used INCLUDING LAG FROM THE OLD CLAIM; number of weeks paid is determined by dividing 50% of total base period earnings by WBA.

      CA should have all your earnings through 8/2016 in its database, so you shouldn’t need to provide information on that.

  • Tracy H.

    A question on job search requirements during the initial filing period (filed Mon 01/16/17) ? I assume that I am totally missing this as I am reading through the EDD website info, are there job search requirements during this time…if so, how many jobs per week is required?

    Thank you!!

    • Yes – you must search for work during the waiting week. CA now requires at least three, I believe. To be safe, do five. CA does conduct audits of work searches from time to time, so keep a good log.

  • Sally H

    I wish to stay discreet about my recent lay off. Do all former employers within the eligible base period get contacted? Or just the most recent one? How are past wages actually confirmed?

    • All employers in the base period are contacted. Wages are confirmed by what employers report to California – usually monthly, sometimes weekly. You not listing an employer does not prevent CA from knowing about that employer. If wages don’t appear in its database for employers listed by the claimant, CA will ask claimant for paystubs/W2s if claimant challenges the base period wages.

      • sidney

        Don’t know if this is the right spot to ask, but I’ve got a question. I submitted unemployment today, due to work being slow and boss told me to file. Now 3 hours later he calls and says we have one day of work for tomorrow only, what do I do?

        • You are fine, as is. Don’t do anything. Many people work the week they’ve filed – California makes the appropriate calculations.

          FYI, CA backdates all claims to the Sunday of the week you have applied. Therefore, CA will establish the claim effective Sunday, January 15th, whether you file now or on Saturday.

          CA will then calculate your unpaid waiting week based on earnings this week, which means your unpaid week will be next week. CA will not pay you for at least four weeks, but you will be submitting biweekly claims beginning with week ending January 21, as follows:

          Weeks Ending:
          Jan 21/Feb. 4 – Both Unpaid – work/unpaid waiting week
          Feb 11/Feb.18 – Both weeks paid

  • Teresa

    Hi, I am an employee in CA. My company, has been sold. They have kept on a handful of us at out corporate office to wind things down. They are going to terminate us (due to sale of business), but then are setting us up as consultants for the next month, and then that will be it. Can I file for unemployment? If so, when they terminate my employment, or when they stop using me as a consultant?

    • Eligibility for benefits is based on your last W-2 job. Will you be a W-2 consultant or paid on 1099? If it is 1099, DO NOT accept that position. You will have no eligibility for a claim if you do.

      Your position as an employee ends when that company stops paying you W-2. Apply for benefits at that time. Once the claim is established, you can return to that company on 1099 contract work as a consultant.

      Many people take 1099 contract jobs AFTER their unemployment claims have been established. CA will close the claim during this period if you are working full-time. When the contract work ends, you call CA to REOPEN the existing claim.

      • Teresa

        Today is the day they are terminating me as a W2 employee. As of tomorrow I would be a 1099’d consultant. Is what you are saying that I should first open a claim on tomorrow, and wait “x” number of days before doing any consulting work for them? If so, how many days would “x” be?

        • Teresa

          Also, in case it matters, when terminated the company will be paying out my vacation (approx. 2 weeks vac pay), severance (7 weeks pay), and a stay bonus (4 weeks pay) from when they initially told me the company was being sold, which was this past August. Would that affect the “establish” timeframe?

        • Appears to me your employer is structuring these job losses so none of you are eligible for benefits. If you want unemployment benefits, don’t take the “stay” bonus.

          When you get home tonight, apply online for benefits – your last day as paid W-2 employee. If all goes well, CA can process a claim in three weeks. Chances are your employer will say you “quit” b/c it offered you 1099 which you refused, so it could take longer.

          To answer second Q, the vacation/severance/bonus payments don’t affect “establish.” Establish means once the claim is approved – that could take several weeks.

          You can’t accept the “stay” bonus at this time without jeopardizing your claim. If you “stay” on as a 1099, that is your last employment and renders you ineligible. Further, if you return to work as a 1099 for this same employer after you’ve filed and before approval. you’ve muddied the waters considerably. You will get a denial and need to appeal. Even though CA ALJ’s are very claimant friendly, in this situation you could very well lose at appeal. You should not file for benefits and then the next day (or even next week) return to work for this employer as a 1099.

          The vacation pay will delay the time before CA pays benefits, but has nothing to do with establish. Fyi – you would experience one unpaid waiting week, two unpaid weeks because of the vacation pay, CA will ignore the severance. You will be eligible for paid benefits beginning the fourth week after filing. Again, this has nothing to do with establish.

  • Lindsey

    I was working for a company over 2.5 years. My boss got laid off. I asked him, do I need to leave, he responded yes, get out of there while you can there doing a huge lay off you guys will be next. So I gave 1 week notice, left on a Friday started work with a new job Monday. This job was great through a temp. agency, Document controller was my title.They used me for 3 months to build their system and let me go on 12-12-16 Re-hired for my position as an assistants position. I applied for Unemployment. I have still not had benefits paid out to me. I had one phone interview they asked why I was let go I told them. they said ok, A week went by, I called EDD and asked what the status was. EDD stated everything looked fine just play the waiting game. Today I received a letter from EDD, another phone interview, asking 1.your receipt of wedges from a prior employer 2. what type of payment did I receive.3. how much was the payment before taxes 4.. what was the name and phone number making the payment. Does this mean that the 1st company I left before getting laid off is fighting the Benefits? Will I be denied due to the fact that I left them? Again I left before I could be laid off. Thank you.

    • Sounds like CA is doing a wage investigation on your earnings AFTER the quit which apparently do not yet appear in its database – not unusual for this time of the year. Those earnings would be necessary to purge any penalty associated with that quit.

      If you worked for three months after that quit, the quit itself is longer relevant, but CA still needs to know exactly what you earned after the quit. You need to provide CA with proof of those earnings. If they haven’t asked for paystubs/W2’s, they should have. Call them back and tell them you can provide proof of earnings.

  • Lynn

    Lynn January 14 2017 @ 10:30am

    I was awarded unemployment benefits for 6/21/15 to 6/.18/16 i found work leaving a balance in my account. After 9 months at my new job I was let go and applied again. They awarded me bennifits for 7/3/16 to 7/1/17 But they only lasted til now 1/14/17. I asked about an extension for the rest of the awarded time. And they said our economy is doing to well. Can I still get the balance from my first awarded insurance I never used..

  • Delores


    My last day of work was Dec 31, 2015 and it was due to my maternity leave. I supposed to be back to work around March 2016 but I was diagosed with having postpartum depression and wasn’t able to work, I finally starting to recover around Nov 2016 and able to bond with my baby with the PFL. Hence, I was on paid maternity leave Jan-March’16, paid Disability leave until Nov’16, PFL until Jan 11 2016. Ive kept in touch and always update them as well about my well being. Finally, last monday, My company informed me that I’m laid off because company isn’t doing well.
    My concern is, am I eligible for unemployment because technically my last day of work was more than a year ago? I filled up the unemployment yesterday and I filled up the first quarter which was Oct’15-Dec’15 with about $6800 income and the rest of the quarters with $0 because I was on Maternity, DI, then PFL. Did I submit it right or am I even eligible for unemployment?
    Please help to assist.

    Thank you.

    • Filing now, CA will examine eligible earnings October 1, 2015-September 30, 2016, which includes three months earnings and the employer-paid maternity leave.

      Further, CA recognizes SDI/PFL income as a qualifier for benefits if your earnings do not meet the Sec 1277 wage requirement, although it will not use that income when calculating the benefit.

      CA does NOT rely on what you put on that application. CA DOES first begin with wages which appear in its database. If your company was paying for maternity leave, it is very likely that income was reported as wages as well which will count toward your benefit calculation – and you should be getting a W-2 from your employer because this is taxable income.

      CA commonly establishes new unemployment benefits claims after claimant has completed SDI/PFL. It appears from what you’ve posted, relative to earnings you will be eligible for benefits. If CA denies and does not take into account the maternity pay and/or PFL benefits, call them.

      • Heidi Hart

        I’m in a similar situation as the girl you replied to (although I was on straight SDI with no maternity leave) and have a question. Isn’t there something called an alternate base period that unemployment will allow you to request if for the past year you’ve had no income due to being solely on SDI? It will be a year come April 1st that I’ve been on SDI and my doctor will be releasing me to work prior to that date, I’d like to apply for unemployment until I find a job being that I was laid off by my last employer prior to becoming disabled shortly thereafter. I know I qualify for UI as far as reasons for loss of employment; however, my past year will not have any income to show due to being solely on SDI whereas the year prior to that would of course. So my question is can I request an alternate base period (meaning prior to my disability) when I apply for UI or do you know if that’s true?

        • CA does a lookback of an extra quarter(s) if you are on Workmen’s Comp, but not SDI. CA says this:

          You may be entitled to substitute wages paid in
          prior quarters to either validate your claim or
          increase your benefit amount, if during your base
          period you:
          • were in the military service.
          • received Workers’ Compensation benefits.
          • did not work because of a labor dispute.

          If your situation fits any of the above, include a
          note with your claim form.


          When you apply in March, your base period is also Oct. 2015-Sept. 2016. You need only $1,300 in earnings in a quarter to be eligible for a claim. If you worked until April 2016, you still have six months’ earnings in your base period and should receive a full claim. Do not apply any later than the last week in March or a quarter of your earnings will age out of the base period. CA won’t be able to use an alternate base period because the quarter which remains will provide a benefit – just not a full 26-week benefit.

          Know that, if CA can find a way to qualify you, it will.

          • Heidi

            So would the last Sunday in March (3/26/17) be a safe day to file so that a quarter of my earnings don’t age out of my base period? Also, what did you mean by “just not a full 26-week benefit” How many weeks would I get then and why not the full 26?

            What if my Dr. hasn’t released me before the last week in March? (pretty sure she has my ending date in April) will I still be ok filing for UI even though my SDI doesn’t come to an end till 4/1/17?

          • Yes, if you apply 3/26/2016 you will keep that quarter. You won’t get 26 weeks because, generally, unless you are very highly paid, three months wages aren’t enough for a 26-week claim. CA bases the benefit on amount of high quarter, and then divides that benefit into 50% of total base period wages to determine number of weeks.

            Whether or not doctor has released you, file for benefits to get that claim established. You could file now, actually. The claim will then be in place when you are again able to search for and accept work to pay benefits.

          • Heidi

            I’m pretty sure you meant to say if I apply 3/26/2017 I’ll keep that quarter. (you said 2016 so just making sure). But anyway, I’ll just go ahead and apply for UI right away then as long as doing so won’t affect the SDI I’m receiving or lower the amount I’d potentially get on UI. So you’re saying it won’t right?
            You said “You won’t get 26 weeks because, generally, unless you are very highly paid, three months wages aren’t enough for a 26-week claim. CA bases the benefit on amount of high quarter, and then divides that benefit into 50% of total base period wages to determine number of weeks.”
            I’m really confused because if my base period is from Oct. 2015-Sept. 2016 like you said, then I would have six months of wages, not three, as I didn’t go on disability till April 1, 2016 and was working from Oct. 2015 – April 2016. I would guesstimate my total wages for those six months at about $14,000 and my highest quarter out of those two around $7500 so can you explain what you mean by them taking that $7500 and dividing into 50% of total base period wages to determine number of weeks? I’m sorry but I don’t understand. Thanks for all the help, I really appreciate it!

          • Yes, should be 2017. Unemployment weekly benefits are lower than SDI benefits. $7500 provides a weekly unemployment benefit amount of $289. $14,000/50%=$7,000/$289=24.22 weeks benefits. If you went on disability in April 2016, CA used wages Jan-Dec. 2015 for the SDI. Therefore, only wages Jan-Apr. 2016 remain unused for an Unemployment claim, although CA may make an exception. I am not positive about that. Nonetheless, apply and let CA figure it out. CA is very good at finding ways to qualify people.

            Unemployment handbook, here:

          • Heidi

            I do know that SDI pays more than UI, what I meant was will it affect me getting the last week of my SDI if I apply for UI in the last week of March with 1 week of disability benefits still left? Well if they don’t use my wages from Oct.-Dec. 2015 then according to my calculations I’d only get $291 a week for 13 weeks 🙁
            I’m really wondering if CA does use the same base period for UI that was used for SDI because I could’ve sworn someone once told me that they are looked at or treated as two different things, and what was used for SDI has no bearing on what is used for UI. I found something pretty interesting about this on the EDD website under “The Lag Period” but still not sure I understand what it means:
            Disability Insurance (DI) and Workers’ Compensation (WC) payments, including benefits paid in or through another state or by the federal government, may be used to satisfy the requirements of Section 1277 under either of the following conditions:
            If the claimant was not paid any benefits on the prior claim, and was disabled and entitled to receive either DI or WC to compensate for wage loss, the claimant may use the amount of DI or WC paid to satisfy the earnings requirement; or
            If the claimant was paid benefits on the prior claim and has satisfied the “some work” requirement, the claimant may use twice the dollar amount of the DI or WC payments to meet the earnings requirement.
            NOTE: DI and WC payments are not usable as “wages” to determine the award on the claim, they are usable only for the specific purpose of validating earnings from the lag period.

            What do you think?

          • You are applying for a brand new unemployment claim. The above language refers to qualifying for a second year/requalifying/transitional unemployment claim and doesn’t apply to your situation. One needs new earnings in the expiring benefit year in order to use any LAG remaining from the earlier claim in a new claim. This is called clearing the LAG. If, because of disability, one hasn’t worked, SDI/WC income can be used to clear the LAG and meet the “new earnings” requirement.

            Relative to applying now, you can have concurrent SDI and UI claims – and draw on the SDI claim but not the UI claim and vice versa. Any benefit due under SDI is not affected by an existing UI claim and vice versa. People often toggle between the two – common example is unemployment/SDI pregnancy/unemployment.

            So, yes, it is quite possible CA treats use of wages for SDI and UI separately and will double use them. That is why I said let CA figure it out.

          • Heidi

            Awesome, thank you so much! One last question and I’ll quit bugging you lol if I go ahead and apply now in Feb. but don’t start getting paid any benefits from the claim till April 1st, will I lose these 2 months (Feb. and March) from the total weeks in my claim? In other words if I end up qualifying for 26 weeks worth of benefits, would I lose 8 weeks because of opening my claim in Feb. and then only get paid for 18 weeks?

          • No. You are given one year to collect those 26 weeks. Weeks available are reduced only if you have actually claimed the weeks – or the benefit year has expired.

          • Heidi Hart

            Ok, so I went ahead and applied for UI the first week in March as you suggested to establish my base period, even though my SDI isn’t ending till April 1st. Well after applying, I got a claim form and filled it out but put that I was disabled the whole 2 weeks, and stated that I was currently on SDI with a release date from my Doctor coming up. Then I never got my next SDI check I was due, even though it normally always direct deposits to my card every 2 weeks, and it’s now been a little over 3 weeks since I got paid. So I called SDI, finally got through and was told that UI froze my SDI claim and cancelled my payment due to me applying for UI. The rep said there was nothing she could do, and I’d have to contact UI which is practically impossible to do by phone, inform them of the same information I already put on the form and on my original application, and then ask them to contact SDI to release my funds. She also said if UI now disqualifies me for being disabled (even though I said I have a release date, so don’t see how they could) then SDI would then on top of my funds already being held, they would have to hold my funds for another 30 days to allow me to appeal the decision in case I chose to do so! So now I’m without any income at all, and don’t know what to do, and I sent an email through Contact EDD but I doubt they’ll do anything about my situation without actually talking to me. Please help! What do I do?!

          • If you reread our discussion, all conversations on when you should apply for UI involved the last week of March, not the first week of March. You even inquired on possibly losing that last week of UI. Here is a quote from one of several where we talked about that week:

            Yes, if you apply 3/26/2016 you will keep that quarter.

            Unfortunately, there isn’t anything you can do now, except what you were told:

            then ask them (UI) to contact SDI to release my funds.

            The process is tricky. When things get complicated, it takes time to correct them. Try to get an earlier release from your doctor, so, if the issue comes up, CA can start paying the UE claim. If CA is sending you UI claim forms for UI, send them back and start certifying weekly. Chances are, you aren’t going to be finding a job that quickly, anyway. And, yes, you may need to appeal to get those back weeks of SDI.

        • Heidi Hart

          Ok, so I cancelled my UI claim on 3/17 because I was told that I could just reapply for a new claim in 2 weeks and that way my SDI benefits would continue until the end of the month, and that worked. However, I’ve been trying to reapply for a new claim today and when I log in to my UI online account it says “Certify for benefits” on my homepage and shows the last 2 weeks that I had certified for stating I was disabled the full 14 days as “pending”. So I’m confused because I know it was cancelled as I went into the SDI office in person and had them view my UI claim to see that I had cancelled so they’d release my funds, and they did. So, why does it still say for me to certify for the last 2 weeks then if it was cancelled? Should I still file a new claim without logging in so that I’m safe? Not sure what to do…

          • If you file any later than midnight 4/01, you will lose a quarter in your LAG. Try to file for a new claim tonight before midnight, although I don’t think the system will take it. If the system won’t take it, then you’ll need to visit the CA office again to get that straightened out.

            It’s possible the old UI claim is still on CA’s books even though you saw cancelled. If so, then you’re fine, and they should reopen that.

            If the claim has, in fact, been cancelled, then you should be able to reapply. If reapplying doesn’t work, when you visit the CA office ask them to backdate the UI claim to 4/01. If they can’t do that, then you’ll need to file an appeal to get them to backdate the claim on the basis of system/technology error to get that extra quarter in the base period. CA will backdate claims on appeal. Otherwise, a claim with only one quarter of earnings will provide about 13 weeks’ benefits instead of the usual 26.

          • Heidi Hart

            Phew! I logged out of my UI online account and just went to the regular homepage of UI without logging in and applied for a new claim on eApply4UI and it went through at 10:15 pm on 3/31 (you must be on eastern time cause it’s not 4/1 where I’m at yet). I was given a confirmation number and it said “You will receive UI claim materials in the mail by: 4/10/2017”. Afterwards just to be on the safe side, I contacted EDD by emailing them through their website and told them what had happened, and that I was just checking to make sure my earlier claim HAD actually been cancelled, and that they received my application for a new UI claim today 3/31. When I logged back into my UI online account, it still said “Certify for Benefits” and didn’t mention anything about my application for a new UI claim though. But, I think I should be ok, what do you think?

          • You’re fine for now. At least you’re on the record. It takes a few days for the system to update, especially on a weekend.

      • Delores

        Thank you so much for the prompt reply!
        With what you explained, do I need to re-file or cancel the submission that I made? It is just so impossible to call them. I filled up the unemployment OL and I filled up the first quarter which was Oct’15-Dec’15 with about $6800 income and the rest of the quarters with $0. Do I need to fill up the rest of the quarters with what I received from SDI and PFL and also to change my last day of work to 1/11/2017 (last day of baby bonding & supposed to be back to work the next day but was laid off)
        Thank you again for your great guidance.

        • As I said:

          CA does NOT rely on what you put on that application.

          Don’t do anything. Wait until you get the determination from CA. Chances you’re going to be fine with your wages and the maternity pay, both of which should be in the CA database.

  • Jennifer Buop

    My BF is a cement worker and is laid off do to the weather or only working 1 day a week. Does he qualify for EDD?

  • Nancy

    If you run out of benefits is there an extentions?

    • There are no extensions and haven’t been any for over three years. Congress discontinue the program in 2013. You need to work again and refile for benefits when your first benefit year expires.

  • Andrea Lee

    I currently work at a job that pays roughly about what I would make on unemployment plus a little bit more which all goes to fuel for my 60+ mile daily commute. Gas prices have started going back up and I am sinking more an more every day. I should have never taken this job making one third of what I was previously but I have no way of even looking for a job or time for any phone calls or interviews since my 45 minute commute each way chews up my time during the typical business day. If I quit will I be disqualified from EDD benefits?

    • CA may find a hardship good cause in your situation. In part, CA says this:

      Cost of commute can establish a compelling reason for quitting work only if it can be shown that the cost was excessive in relation to the wages paid, and that there was no foreseeable way in the near future for the claimant to reduce the cost.

      Discussed, here – read Section C carefully:


      California will deny you initially, as a decision on your situation is outside the authority of the interviewer. You will need to appeal and present evidence that time/distance/costs make the job not financially feasible and, in fact, a hardship.

      CA ALJ’s are very sympathetic. If you present your case properly, there is an excellent chance you would be approved. However, between application/decision/appeal – you will be waiting at minimum two months before you see any money, probably longer.

  • Judy Banuelos

    I was laid off Jan 3rd of 2017, however I have a job lined up to start on Feb 6th.Can I collect unemployment for the weeks that I will not be working? I also recieved a lump sum severance package.

  • Winky Chiang

    Does the employer need to pay the Unemployment Insurance to the employee if the employee only worked for the employer for a week?

  • Viviane

    I need some clarification on filing a new claim and /or continuing/ reopening a claim. If you could please simplify this for my situation as simply as possible.
    I filed a U.I. claim for the first time in April 2016, I was awarded the benefits however they scheduled a phone interview as well on top of having to certify for 2 weeks. After I certified, i was told that it was disqualified. I had found and stared a new job by the time the phone interview had been scheduled and missed the call.. long story short i didn’t receive any funds for that claim as i was disqualified and was employed full time which I included when i certified for benefits.
    I was recently let go from my most recent employer and had filed a new claim using U.I. online. I received a letter with a date and time for the phone interview completed the interview, etc. I was told to continue to certify for benefits. ( i did not receive anything other than the appointment for the phone interview in the mail about this new claim.) I have been waiting for something in the mail that had my new account number to be able to check the status on the new claim, but i received an email with my prior claim (04/2016) info instead. I log in and it says to certify for the last 2 week. However the information did not change. The benefits that were shown were the same as if it just reopened the same claim.
    My concern and question is why is the benefit amount the same? how can I make sure that i am paid the benefits for the newest claim and what steps should take to correct this, if in deed there was an error make?

    • There is no error. You don’t have a new claim. You are only allowed one claim in any 52-week period. The April claim remained on CA’s books after it was opened even though no benefits were paid.

      You may have been disqualified for the first week because you probably worked the week you applied and/or received vacation and/or other pay from your job, plus you needed to serve CA’s unpaid waiting week – which would account for CA’s dq for those two weeks.

      What has happened now is you are reopening the inactive April claim which is why everything is the same. Just start submitting claims as you’ve been instructed. You can collect benefits under this claim until it expires in April or you exhaust benefits.

      If you are still unemployed in April, because you’ve worked during this current benefit year, you will be eligible for another claim at that time.

  • GSantana

    I filed for unemployment in CA after being fired by my employer on 8/2016. I had an accident in the job a couple of months prior to separation of the company. So I was approved for unemployment and received some payments before my doctor put me on disability. I have a WC case open and notified UI when I first applied about the WC case. Then I contacted UI and told them I had applied for disability because WC was not paying any benefits. So they closed my UI case and told me once out of SDI to reopen again. I did this on 12/2016 and just received my phone interview last week and certified for benefits. I am now worried because after I certified I saw it says disqualified on both weeks. What does this mean? I faxed the release note from the doctor after my phone interview and on both certifications it did asked me the date I was released by the doctor? Is it because I have a pending WC that I am not eligible if so why was I approved the first time?

    • You need to call CA on what it apparently is viewing as double payments.

      • Michel'le Jones

        Hey I was wondering if I apply I worked for Amazon and went negative UPT (unpaid hours) only because HR wasn’t doing there job right and took my Time for hours they miss prior.. They had a system error and said I was responsible still

        • This sounds more like a labor standards dispute than an unemployment issue. Report your employer to CA. Read this link:


        • Michel'le Jones

          They Fired me today because of it.

          • OK, now that you’ve been discharged apply for benefits. Let CA investigate the claim. Again, if Amazon was in noncompliance with CA labor standards, nothing they can say will fix that. You may be initially denied and need to prove at appeal that it was their error that put you in negative status.

            Know that most interviewers won’t bother to sift through the minutia of an issue, they will just deny and let the appeals court sort it out. CA ALJs are very claimant-friendly. Over 50% of CA appeals are won. If you have good documentation, you should prevail at appeal. Process will take a couple of months.

  • Pat

    I was laid off in May 2016. UI claim beginning date 5/29/16 ending 5/27/17.
    My claim balance just ran out…but I was incorrectly thinking I would receive through May 2017.
    The unemployment Insurance award statement I received listed only 2015 quarters wages. Do I/can I open a new claim for 2016 quarters that I worked? Do I need to wait until above claim expires – or can I start receiving benefits before that?
    Also, this is what the notice on my online account shows:
    “Maximum Benefits Paid
    You have received all benefits payable to you at this time. You cannot file another California Unemployment Insurance claim until your current benefit year ends.’
    Does “benefit year” end on 12/31/16 or on 5/27/16? ie: is benefit year same as claim period?
    Thank you!

    • Benefit year ends 5/27/17. Yes, it is the same as the claim period. Maximum benefits in CA (and most states) is 26 weeks. You are given one year (benefit year) to exhaust those benefits. Earliest you can apply for another claim in CA is May 2017 at which point CA can use the 2016 earnings (LAG), BUT you must have worked and had new earnings before then to use those earnings. CA requires you show an attachment to the workforce.

      Try to find some part-time or temporary work so you can use that LAG when this benefit year expires. If you haven’t worked since you first filed for benefits, CA cannot use what remains of the other earnings in that new claim.

  • ryan


    I was laid off yesterday (12/20/16) and should be eligible for unemployment. I worked at this job for 8 months prior to being laid off and did not have a position from January 1st-april.

    My question is, would it be more beneficial for my to wait until January 1st, 2017 (Sunday) to apply for unemployment benefits or should I apply immediately, today? I am getting mixed answers online because the way base periods are calculated. Please note that I made about 7400-8400 per quarter period in this time, with the last quarter (oct-dec) being the highest gross income.

    Thank you for the help!

    • In calculating its benefit, CA uses 50% of total wages in the base period divided by the WBA which is based on high quarter earnings to determine number of weeks paid.

      Therefore, wait until January to apply if you want a benefit for 26 weeks. Applying now will only provide 13 weeks, because you will qualify using CA’s standard base period on just the earnings between April-June, which will provide a benefit, but not for 26 weeks. California will only use its alternate base period if you do not qualify under the standard base period.

      If you wait until January, CA will use earnings through September 30, 2016 – a new standard base period which includes another quarter of earnings. High quarter of $8400 = WBA $324, weeks 25.92 (total earnings $16,800/2=$8,400/$324=25.92 wks) – explained, here:


  • Candice

    After 8 plus years, I was injured on the job. (Sept 2012) Employer sent me to WC doctor. I was out for a month, tried to go back, was back out on WC since Dec 2013. I was laid off Due to reduction in staff Aug 2014.
    My WC case was closed several months ago however my Dr did not release me to go to work until Dec 1, 2016. I have no SDI available and haven’t since October 2016. The day I was released from my Dr)12/1). I filed for UI here in CA – I received an award with zero dollars. I was on SDI and WC On and off based on court visits due to the shady WC broken system. I had to wages through no fault of my own. So I get no UI? Please please help me. I cannot find a job and am desperate

    • Your disability has extended for such a long period, it is very unlikely there is any financial basis for a new claim at this time. This is a common situation for people who have had long-term disability.

      That said, by all means speak with a CA rep. In some cases, SDI/WC payments can be substituted for wages. Generally, this occurs for people experiencing disability of under a year. At this point, using its Alternate Base Period, CA would be looking at base period October 1, 2015 – September 30, 2016.

      Give CA a call. There may be something they can do for you. Otherwise, explore the resources listed here:


  • Julia

    I am being laid off as of Thursday and when that happens I have to move in with family in another county. Do I file in my current county or in the county I will be living in?

    • Where you live, even in another state, doesn’t matter. What matters is in which state you earned the money. File online at the State of California EDD website. Doesn’t matter from where you do it.

      • Julia

        My boss has told me that he can no longer pay me but is resistant to signing papers saying I am laid off. If I quit for those reasons, can I still qualify for benefits? I can provide bank statements showing that my pay check has bounced multiple times.

        • Read #7 – Failure or Refusal to Pay, here:


          The fact that checks have bounced numerous times and his current statement saying he could no longer pay you should do it. CA is very claimant-friendly. You should be approved.

          If, on the off-chance you get a bad interviewer and a initial denial, know that on appeal you will win benefits. CA ALJ’s look for reasons to approve benefits.

          However, this is a pretty cut and dried situation. You should not have a problem.

      • Carolina

        Hi, does one have to live in the US to receive claim if approve or can still receive benefits if live with family outside the US due to living conditions?

        • Loss of housing can be qualifying in CA, but living outside the United States will render you NOT Able and Available, and therefore disqualified from benefits, even though CA may establish the claim.

          Claiming benefits from outside the United States is considered FRAUD.

          You can only claim benefits while within the United States. Out-of-country claims are not allowed by any state and all states will block out-of-country claims and suspend benefits – some permanently – which means no future claims.

          If you are out of the country searching for work, you need to call CA and ask how you can claim benefits under your particular set of circumstances.

      • Kiki

        “Where you live, even in another state, doesn’t matter.” But wouldn’t this mean that you are “not eligible to work” in the state where you are making your claim? Does California pay UI if you are living in, say, Oregon, and are seeking work there?

  • KRol

    Hello! Looking for some clarification… was laid off 11/23/15 and applied for UI on 11/23/15. Benefits were exhausted after 26 weeks — claim period was 11/22/15-11/19/16.
    I have not found regular full-time employment, though did do a “side job” for my sister’s company for work one week recently (in October 10-14, 2016). I worked 15 hours total and was paid $1500.

    I just reapplied – submitted a new UI application and now have a phone interview scheduled for next week. I listed my old employer (from where I was laid off 11/23/15) as my “very last employer” but also listed my sister’s co as an employer in the last 18 months. Because I only did 15 hours for her, I didn’t list her co as my “very last employer” on the new claim app. Clearly the dates of when I worked for my sister, vs. my last FT employer may have caused a red flag since I didn’t list her co as the “very last employer” — since it was only 15 hours!

    In the meantime, I just received a letter that requests proof of earnings…states that I cannot be paid on the new claim unless I “worked as an employee between 11/22/15 and 11/19/16and condition (a) or (b) is met.” (a) states that I must have “earned at least $1300 as an employee in one quarter between the dates listed above” (11-22-15 and 11-19-16).

    Here is my concern/confusion and questions….$1500 is the only income earned this year (besides a severance that was paid on 1/4/16). Do I need to have been a W-2 employee of my sister’s company in order to qualify, or can I be an independent contractor? Does this make a difference as to the reference of “worked as an employee”?

    Also, for “proof of earnings,” what would this entail?…My last check from previous F/T employer was my final check and I have an actual pay stub, and a Final Paycheck Acknowledgement that is signed and dated 11/23/2015 — it does not indicate what days the pay is for, but does list wages, accrued vacation pay (which I don’t recall if I claimed or not on either of the claims – yikes! :0 ), and tax deductions. I also have a dated 11/23/15 and signed copy of “Notice to Employee as to Change in relationship” form showing layoff date of 11/23/2015. As far as payment from my sister, I have no back up as I deposited a company check, but nothing showing any reference or tax info. Should I simply get a copy of the deposited check and make a note with reference to what it was for?? Not sure if I needed to be a w-2 or an independent contractor, to be considered “worked as an employee,” so not sure if that check/payment will be adequate. Help…What should I provide as “proof”?

    So this is so long-winded, but appreciate any guidance! Wanting to do the right thing here and not jeopardize getting my second claim approved. Thanks!

    • Severance from your earlier employer will not create eligibility for a new claim, now. Those monies should appear in CA’s database as severance related to your earlier employment.

      You need to have worked since you lost your job and need to have earned $1,300 in bona fide wages in one quarter – that means W-2 – in order to be eligible for a new claim at your benefit year-end. The 1099 work for your sister is not bona fide.

      Talk to the interviewer about this, and provide CA with a copy of that check, requesting a wage reclassification. This means your sister will need to pay UI, WC and other taxes. CA reclassifies wages all the time. These new earnings allow CA to use the LAG (unused earnings) from the earlier claim. The LAG is what will give you a decent claim.

      Expect this process to take four-six weeks, at least.

      • KRol

        Hi Daphne,

        Wow! You are so fast! Thanks for the info – so appreciated!

        Some follow-up ??s…

        1) I realize the severance pay received in Jan doesn’t create eligibility on a new claim, now, but don’t recall that I ever claimed the severance when I received it (in Jan—and I would have been certifying benefit weeks at that time). I also didn’t report anything other than regular pay on the old or new claim (i.e., didn’t report vacation pay that was received on 11/23/15 as part of final check) Hope that doesn’t negatively effect me now, or negatively effect me retroactively, either?!)…,Should I be worried??

        2) Do you suggest I hold off on sending the copy of the check deposit until AFTER I speak to the interviewer, or should I get a copy of the check in the mail ASAP, knowing that I am scheduled to speak to them next Wed?
        2B) Was really expecting that I’d be employed by now, so hadn’t considered the idea of re-applying for UI until recently. Now that I have done it, do you think it is better that I talk to the interview about it and ask CA to reclassify the wages, or ask my sister to add me as a W2 and pay me retroactively (and I can simply refund her the original payment? Although that could take longer than the 10 days in which they’ve requested the proof)… Or does this get too convoluted?

        Thank you for your help, again!

        • Answers:
          #1 – Don’t worry about the severance/vacation pay. If CA has any Qs, it will ask.
          #2 – Wait until you speak with the interviewer, especially if your sister can report these wages to CA as W-2 – for the period prior to the end of your benefit year. There would be no need to mention being paid on 1099.
          #2B – It would be simpler if your sister could report those wages to CA as W-2 for the period worked, thus avoiding the reclassification process. CA would still need a copy of the paycheck and then would query her. She would acknowledge the W-2 wages – thus bypassing the reclassification process.

  • Jeff

    I am in California. If I was offered a severance package, but have not signed the Separation and Release Agreements ( I am working on asking for a better Severance payout), do i still need to report it when I submit my Unemployment Benefits application? What if i report it and the unthinkable happens – they withdraw the offer?

  • Tom

    I’ve been notified I will be laid-off and my last day will be on Feb 15, 2017. Assuming this happens, it sounds like I would immediately file a claim and there will be a 1 week waiting period.

    Is it possible to defer some or all of the unemployment income into 2018?

    • The only way to defer benefits into 2018 is to delay applying for benefits until much later in 2017. Assuming you qualify for the max benefit of $450/wk, unless you’ve earned $23,400 in quarter, you should be aiming to keep at least two quarters wages in your base period in order to qualify for a 26-week claim. If two quarters’ wages equal $23,400, CA divides its maximum weekly benefit of $450 into 50% of earnings ($11,700), to arrive at 26 weeks’ benefits. CA provides an explanation of base periods and a good overview of how it calculates benefits in its handbook, here:


      Claims provide 26 weeks’ benefits. You are given one-year from week of application to collect those benefits. This is called a benefit year.

      In your case, this means if you apply anywhere between the second week of October 2017 – mid-December 2017, CA will use base period wages July 1, 2016-June 30, 2017 – which includes earnings 7/2016-2/2017. You can wait to begin to claim those benefits until January 2018 and still have at least nine-twelve months to collect those benefits depending on when you apply.

      There have been claimants who have applied a year after discharge. As long as sufficient wages remain in the base period, their benefits are granted.

      • Tom

        Thank you for all the fantastic information and quick reply!

        I should have stated that for several years my monthly wages have been (and will continue until 2/15/2017 to be) $13,300. So quarterly wages would be $39,900. Do I qualify for the max benefit even if only one quarter is in the base period?

        So it sounds like I could wait to APPLY until 12/15/2017 and then CLAIM the full 26 week benefit starting in Jan 2018. Does this sounds correct?

        • Yes, you qualify for $450 for 26 weeks if only one quarter is used. Unlike many states, CA will grant a claim on only one quarter of earnings.

          Since your earnings are so high, you could even wait to January 2018 to apply, base period would be 10/01/2016-09/30/2017 – and would include the December 2016 and March 2017 quarters. Way more than enough to qualify for $450/wk for 26 weeks.

  • Vicky Bowden

    I have a brother, aged 60, who was laid off. He claims the unemployment officer told him that realistically, at his age , he will be unable to get another job. Therefor he will be able to receive unemployment benefits until he is 62 1/2 . Is that accurate? I thought benefits only lasted 26 weeks.

    • Is he in a CTTB (training) program? In that case, he might receive benefits for up to two years. Otherwise, all he gets now is 26 weeks. Unless he works again before his claim expires a year from now, no, there are no additional benefits.

  • JonathanJ

    Hi, I’m in California and I recently traveled to another state to speak at a conference and to help with some of the organization/planning while at the conference. A few weeks before heading there, I gave EDD (unemployment) a heads up via their website that I would be traveling to another state for work reasons and that I’d continue looking for jobs while there. They immediately stopped my benefits and scheduled an eligibility interview. My interview went well and I was eventually allowed to certify for benefits for all of the weeks that I had missed when they stopped my benefits.
    My question is: for the week that I was out of state, will it hurt me at all to write in my claim form that I worked (even though I was not paid) at the conference? In other words, will working even if for just two days, without pay trigger another suspension of my benefits and another phone call to check on my eligibility?
    I did continue to look for jobs while I was out there in person and online. I’m not sure if it’s best to just write in the latter, as opposed to also writing in the former (conference work) and risk having my benefits suspended pending another eligibility interview.

    • If you report unpaid work for two days, yes, CA will stop benefits again. Don’t do it. You did your work searches, those two days did not render you not Able and Available, you were not paid. Forget about it. Not reporting earnings and claiming while on vacation is fraud, but not reporting two days of unpaid work doesn’t rise to that level. Claim as normal. And, fyi, it is NOT necessary to report to CA when traveling out of state to look for work. You can even claim benefits while in another state. You cannot claim while out of the country.

  • Ivo

    Hi – my last day of work was on Oct 8 (Job ended as it was seasonal and the summer season ended). Initially I was expecting to start my new job fairly quickly, so I did not immediately aply for UI benefits. It went different and on Nov 2 I filled my claim, mentioning that my last day of work was Oct 8. The UI says now that my benefit year started on Oct 30. Is it possible to appeal and have the benefit year start on Oct 9? Thank you!

    • California and every other state will backdate your application to the Sunday of the week you apply, because benefits are determined by “weeks.” You applied November 2, claim is backdated to October 30. There is no way now to be paid a benefit from the first week in October. You can only be paid beginning the week you applied.

      No, it is not possible to have the benefit year start on October 9 unless you were given wrong information by a representative when you first tried to apply. Then you would need to appeal. Doesn’t sound like this applies to you, since you admit you waited almost a month before submitting an application.

      Because Oct. 8 and Oct. 30 are in the same quarter, there is no change in base period wages used to determine the weekly benefit or total amount to be paid under this claim. Thus, your weekly benefit amount and length of claim are not negatively affected by your late application. You just begin to receive benefits later.

      In CA, as in most states, you need to serve an unpaid waiting week. Therefore, you will be paid beginning week ending 11/12. You should have already submitted a biweekly claim for weeks ending 11/05 and 11/12.

      • Ivo

        Thanks Daphne. I was already afraid of it. I did some research on the internet the past few hours and read that it is indeed not possible to backdate the application. I guess next time I will apply for a claim right away and decide then wether to claim for benefits or wait a little bit. #lessonlearned

  • Terry

    Hi- I am receiving unemployment benefits from California that will end in 8 weeks. I have not found a job yet. I am receiving benefits form the state of California even though I live in a different state now. I had to move as we were relocated by my husbands company and I had to leave my job. A transfer was not available for me. I understand there are no extensions available. I worked until June 2016. Can I reapply in February as I have read in other comments if I do not find a job by then? What are my options? Do I file in the state I now live in? Thank you.

    • You need to have worked before your benefit year expires to be eligible for another claim. If you left a long-time job in CA, you probably have a pretty good LAG (unused earnings) which can provide an excellent second claim. But, you need to have worked in order to utilize that LAG.

      Try to find any kind of work that will pay you $1,300 before year-end, or at least $900 before December and another $225 Jan-Feb.

      If you meet that earnings requirement, reapply in CA the week your benefit year ends. CA will need to verify earnings and should open a new claim. Otherwise, provided you’ve experienced a qualified separation, apply in the state where you are now living, and ask for a combined-wage claim. In either case, you need to have worked before your benefit year expires.

  • Jen

    I work for a small family owned restaurant and we are closing 3 weeks for repairs. Will the employees qualify since its such a short period of time? If we open earlier can unemployment be cancelled immediately without being penalized?

    • You can apply. The claim will have a one-week waiting period, so at most two weeks’ benefits would be paid. If the restaurant reopens, all that is necessary is to stop claiming. The claim will automatically close.

      You have 30 days from issuance of the eligibility determination to withdraw the claim. However, once benefits have been claimed and/or paid on a claim, the claim itself cannot be withdrawn or cancelled.

      That said, the claim is good for one year. If there is a job loss in the interim, you would call CA to REOPEN that existing claim.

  • Lindsay

    Hi I was originally denied unemployment but was just approved on the 14th after my court appeal. When will I receive my funds into my account? I already have my edd card from my maternity leave a few months prior.

  • Jorge

    After 16 years working for the same company I decide to leave. This was 2 Months a go,

    I still looking for jobs but nothing,probably because I’m a old man 55, and my question is if I by able to claim a Unemployment compensation ?

    Many thanks

    • Why did you quit? You need a good reason to quit before CA will pay unemployment benefits – such as medical, compelling family reasons, material change in your employment contract, loss of housing, loss of public transportation. If you quit “just because” you didn’t want that particular job anymore, that is not good cause, and you are not eligible for benefits. You need a reason.

  • Bryn Reilly

    I worked a Fulltime job and a Part-time I was recently laid off from my Full time job which was my main income. Can I file for unemployment even though I am still at the part time job where I work 15-20 hours a week. If I am allowed to file do I have to report the part time job as weekly income each week when I file a claim? Thank you

  • Annie

    I opened my claim in Jan 2016, benefits exhausted in July 2016, went on disability in Sept 2016. Dr is releasing me from disability, to look for work, Jan 2017. Can I reopen my claim in Jan 2017, or should I wait in Feb 2017 & open a new claim? Will I be eligible for benefits if I did not have earnings, after UI benefits exhausted? If not, can UI go back to 2015 or 2014 earnings? I’m just trying to plan ahead if I am eligible for benefits after my disability ends.
    Thank you

    • There is no point ‘reopening’ a claim when its benefits have been exhausted. However, you can apply for a new unemployment claim the week the current benefit year expires in January 2017. Assuming your disability payments were paid under the CA SDI program, CA often finds a way to qualify its SDI people for a second unemployment benefit year. In your case, CA will use CA SDI payments to meet its Sec 1277 earnings requirement for a new claim, if you can show evidence of attachment to the workforce before Jan. 2017. In other words, you must have worked in some capacity – even self-employment – although actual earnings from SE employment cannot be used. So, find yourself some work – online writing, dog watching, house-sitting, whatever – and be able to provide proof of that endeavor. Good luck.

  • joe s.

    I was fired from my job. My initial claim was denied. I have been jobless for 3-4 weeks now.
    How do i or can i get back pay for those weeks. I’m still unemployed and I live in wisconsin and i am getting no answers. Any jelp would be great!

    • You need to submit a request for an appeal hearing within the timeframe in that denial letter. At the appeal hearing itself, you present evidence of why the decision was wrong and hope that the decision is overturned. Until WI overturns this decision, you are denied. If you succeed at appeal, WI will pay all back weeks. Keep claiming. Know that, if you are late filing the request for an appeal, you’re finished.

  • zoey

    Hello I applied for unemployment in sept 2015 but went back to work so i didnt receive anything. In Dec 2015 I took my maternity leave ,bonding with baby leave which had me returning to work May 2016 but to my surprise the company I worked for got sold.I applied for unemployment and got approved. Since I had applied in sept 2015 my claim ended sept 2016. Can I reapply since I my claim ended and I didnt receive 26 weeks. Also with new claim will it be for 26 weeks or just 13 weeks since I already got 13 weeks on my previous claim

    • Weeks in the new claim have nothing to do with weeks in your earlier claim. Your new claim will be based on whatever LAG exists from the 9/2015 claim (unused earnings from end of base period to date of application) and new earnings.

      If you had a long period of employment prior to the 9/2015 claim, the LAG could be as much as five-six months’ earnings.

      Your weekly benefit is based on the high quarter in the new base period – probably April 2015-March 2016; number of weeks paid is determined by dividing 50% of total base period wages by the weekly benefit amount.

      Even if CA used its alternate base period in your first claim which would include earnings through June 30, 2015, this second claim should still be almost as good as the first because you will, at minimum, have earnings July-December 2015 in the new base period – which should still provide very close to a 26 week claim. If the new base period is April 2015-March 31, 2016, for sure you’ll have a 26-week claim.

  • Melissa

    Hi I was wondering if I am still eligible for unemployment after being off of work for almost two years. I was in an accident and received disability for a year till November 2015. I have not received any benefits or worked since then. But I have worked consistently for the past 10 years at my job and even before that. I don’t think I’ve ever received unemployment. My question is can I still file a claim for unemployment benefits?
    Thank you in advance..

    • The furthest back CA can look for wages at this time is the period April 1, 2015-March 30, 2016. Since you haven’t worked at all during that period, unfortunately there are no wages on which to base a claim.

  • Kyle

    I live in California and I am considering accepting a “Work from Home” position for a Indiana based company. I will be a W-2 employee (not contract) and spend no more than 3 days/month working in Indiana. My question is two fold. Which state will I be paying UI, CA or IN? Secondly, in the event it does not work out and I am let go (lets assume the reason for separation qualifies me for UI benefits), which state would I file for UI benefits and, is the amount of time I was employed by the IN company a factor?

    • You are not paying UI tax, your employer is. Where you file depends on to which state your employer reports wages. You will need to ask them about that when the time comes. In order to obtain benefits in Indiana, you need wages in at least two quarters, as follows:

      To establish a valid claim, you must have total wage credits during your base period that are equal to at least one and one-half (1.5) multiplied by your highest quarter wages. You must also have base period wages totaling at least $4,200, with $2,500 of those wages earned in the last six (6) months of the base period (see example below)

      Read more on how Indiana qualifies, here:


      California, on the other hand, requires wages of either $1,300 in one quarter, or $900 in one quarter with an additional $225 outside that high quarter.

  • Kenneth

    In June 2015, was laid off my job of 26 years. Because I was due to receive several months of severance pay, I chose not to apply for UI until January of this year. I started receiving benefits in mid-February. Now, after 26 weeks, my benefits have ended.

    Aside from applying for new jobs, I have been doing unpaid consulting work for a small company in my field for more than six months. (This was supposed to yield a paying job, and it may still, but so far it hasn’t.)

    My question is: in the absence of a new salaried job, is there a point when I could reapply for Unemployment Insurance benefits?

    I’m particularly concerned because I also just missed out on the Unemployment Mortgage Payment program. Being able to reapply for UI (even if it’s not until January or February–and even if my benefit is much smaller than this year’s) would make me feel better about the future.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Your current benefit year ends January/February 2017. Under CA law, you cannot apply for another CA claim before then under any circumstances. Claims are limited to one per 52-week period. In Jan. 2017, using its alternate base period, CA will examine wages Jan-Dec. 2016. At this point, you have no wages. Therefore, no new claim is possible until you work. Try to find some paying work between now and the end of the year – and experience a qualifying separation. Without new wages, there can be no new unemployment claim.

      Minimum wages for a new claim are (1) $1,300 in one quarter, or (2) $900 in one quarter, plus $225 outside that quarter.

      In future, know that had you applied for benefits in June 2015, California would have used earnings Jan-December 2014, which would have left earnings Jan-June 2015 in your LAG to be used in a new claim had you done any W-2 work between June 2015/June 2016. The second claim in June 2016 would have been as good as the first because your LAG is almost six months’ wages.

      You may or may not know that severance has no effect on CA unemployment benefits. If, for tax reasons, you didn’t want to collect the benefit in 2015, you could have established the claim in June 2015 to preserve the LAG and postponed claiming benefits until 2016 and still collected the entire amount of the claim as the benefit year would not have expired until June 2016. As stated above, the most in W-2 wages you would have needed to earn during the benefit year is (1) $1,300 in one quarter, or (2) $900 in one quarter, plus $225 outside that quarter to utilize that great LAG in a second claim.

      Unfortunately, the LAG has since aged out of any possible base-year CA can use and is, therefore, not available for another claim. Any new claim needs to be based on new earnings.

      • Kenneth

        So great to get thorough, clear information. Over the past 14 months–UI, health insurance–that hasn’t been the norm. Thanks so much!

        • Kenneth

          A follow-up question (to my other, above): I’ve been doing unpaid consulting work for a company for about seven months. This work was supposed to turn into paid employment, but because the company has bungled two outside projects, nothing has materialized yet. However, my immediate supervisor at the company has agreed to pay me (out of her own pocket) for some external work/research over the next three months. It will both help her with some independent work she’s doing and give me a little income.

          If I hoped to use this income to qualify for UI benefits again in spring 2017: what does she need to do to be considered my legal California employer for the next few months? Does she need to create an LLC and pay taxes on my salary?

          Is there a webpage anywhere that would explain this?

          Thanks in advance!

  • ChrisM

    Hello, I applied for unemployment back on August 7th. Got a notice for a phone interview for sept 2nd. Got approved for benifits and have recieved a week back pay and this weeks pay. However I have not recieved my card yet. I understand that Monday is a holiday so it will most likely come come tomorrow. Just wondering how long it usually takes.

  • Kimberly

    I filed for unemployement May 6th, 2016. Received benefits based on lower paying job that I had for 7 years. Got new full time job 5/31/16 that had double the pay of last job so stopped certifying as of that date. Unemployed again as of 8/18/16 they said I wasnt a good fit within my probation period of 90 days and let me go. Do I reopen old claim and add new base pay amounts so I can receive higher rate of unemployment? Or do I file a whole new claim? Or do I pick up my certification where I left off? I cant seem to get anyone on phone at EDD to answer this for me and I dont know what to do? Should I go into their office? I cant find answers on the website. I am waiting for re-open or file new claim but want to include this new higher pay rate into my qrtly rate between June 1 and Sept 1 or does it matter? Can someone please advice. Thank you in advance for any insight.

    • The higher pay rate doesn’t matter at this point. You are allowed one claim per 52-week period. Therefore, you REOPEN the current claim. You can do this online. If you are still unemployed at the end of your current benefit year in May 2017 or only working part-time, you reapply for a new claim. The newer higher wages will be included then.

  • Kristy Whatley

    Hello- My husband lost his job in February and has been collecting CA benefits since March – they are about to end in two weeks. Are there any extensions? He’s worked for 14 years up to this point. I don’t understand.

    • There are no extensions. Congress ended that program Dec. 2013. Most states pay 26 weeks benefits, MA pays 30 weeks, some other southern states pay between 12-14 weeks. CA bases his weekly benefit amount (WBA) on high quarter earnings. The number of weeks he receives is determined by dividing the WBA into 50% of total base period wages, not to exceed 26 weeks. In all states, standard base period in his case would be earnings October 1, 2014-September 30, 2015. CA handbook provides a good explanation, here:


      If he can find work – any work – between now and February 2017, he can apply for another claim when the current benefit year ends in February 2017 which might provide a very good benefit because of unused earnings from his prior employment (LAG) – October 1, 2015-February discharge – but he must work in order to utilize the LAG. He needs to earn either (1) $1,300 in one quarter, or (2) $900 in one quarter and an additional $225 outside that quarter.

      You may also want to contact CA social services for other possible assistance.


  • Amber

    I filed for unemployment on 8/7/2016 and received a letter for the phone interview date on the 10th. Then on the 12th I received a letter that said “Notice of Unemployment Insurance Award” and then gives the breakdown of what I will be paid and my weekly benefit amount. It says “Claim beginning on 8/7/2016” and “claim ending on 8/5/2017.”

    Does this mean my claim was approved since it says “Notice of Unemployment Insurance Award?” I haven’t even had my interview yet, it is scheduled for 8/25/2016.

  • Ruth

    I am 71 years old and lost my job in June 2016 – can I be denied benefits because of my age in spite of the fact I need to work and am actively seeking employment.
    After applying on 6-26-16 I have just today found out I am waiting for a phone interview – would never have known that if I had not kept asking why I wasn’t receiving any benefits yet. Interview to establish eligibility – age is the only reason I can think of that would disqualify me. I have been working for this company since 2004 and they have just gone out of business.

    • Daphne

      No, you cannot be denied benefits because of age as long as you are conducting work searches and are able and available to work. You should have received a notice on the interview, which is standard in most situations. CA wants to know why you lost your job – age is not the issue. Don’t worry about this. If company has gone out of business, you should have no problem. Assuming all goes well, that you have been submitting biweekly online claims, you should be approved and see some money on your BofA account within a week of the interview.

  • Rachelle

    How long after you’re fired do you have to file unemployment? I got fired almost 1 year ago. I was put on disability so that’s why I did not file even when I got fired…I live in California.

    • Sheila

      Hurry up and file and find out. Let that agency answer that question. Time is ticking!

    • You should still have enough earnings in your base period to qualify for benefits. If you file no later than July 2, 2016, CA will use a base period Jan-Dec. 2015, which should give you at least six months earnings in your base period and qualify you for a full 26 week claim.

  • Toni

    Can I apply for ueid if I work one day out of the week for the employer at 6 or 7 hours. But also take care of my mom and get paid by state at 3 hours a day?

  • Nicky

    Hi, can someone please help ?!? I was initially denied unemployment benefits. I appealed won the case. I initially appealed 26 weeks ago. They just sent me I won the ruling with my judge after appealing twice. The judge said the ruling must be reversed , so do I get back paid from the time of initial appeal ? Or it starts from now ?
    Thank you !

    • You get paid retro for all the weeks for which you’ve filed claims. So, if you have already filed all 13 biweekly claims, which you should have been doing ever since you were initially denied, you will be paid retro to the date you first filed for benefits. In other words, you should be getting the entire value of the claim.

  • Does anyone know what happens when you are late to certify? I was doing it online and then it just stopped working by the time I realized you could call it in it was 7 or 8 days late

  • But between May and June 2010, the ofiacifl seasonally adjusted jobless rate for Black male workers over 20 years-of-age in the United States increased from 17.1 to 17.4 percent; while the unemployment rate for white male workers over 20 years-of-age increased from 8.8 to 8.9 percent, according to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics data. The number of Black male workers over 20 years-of-age having jobs decreased by 126,000; while the number of white male workers over 20 years-of-age with jobs decreased by 78,000.

    • Why are women gaining jobs faster? Maybe it is because men are still losing jobs. “Employment in local government continued to trend down over the month. Local government has lost 416,000 jobs since an employment peak in September 2008.” The job loss in local government is mainly blue collar. 60% of cities and 68% of counties report that the biggest cuts are in Public Works. Public Works are such jobs as: transportation infrastructure, construction and maintenance, solid waste collection and disposal and sewer/water services.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *