How Long Do I Have to Work For to Collect Unemployment in Florida?

Florida requires you to have earned a minimum of $3,400 in the entire base period. Further, you must have earned at least 1.5 times your HQW in the entire base period, as well. Your highest quarter wages (HQW) must be at least $2,267. You also must have worked during a minimum of two quarters in the base period in order to qualify for unemployment insurance.

Florida does not offer extended or alternate base periods.

In Florida an employer or employing unit is covered under unemployment insurance if it paid at least $1,500 in wages during any calendar quarter in the current or previous calendar year. Further, an employer/employing unit is also covered under unemployment insurance if it paid wages to at least one employee and employed said worker at least one day per week during the 20 weeks of the current or previous calendar year.


  • Cindy Hasher

    My spouse is in the military and is being stationed across the country. I have to leave my job for that reason. Am I eligible to collect unemployment?

  • Jc

    I recently got recruited to a company from another company. I’ve worked for them for 5 weeks and have earned about $7000. If I am fired now, will I be eligible for unployment? They seem very impatient with me learning their products and getting up to speed. I’m in Florida.

    • Yes, you are eligible. You need to have earned $4,675 at this new job following the earlier quit. You’ve purged whatever penalty FL might have for that earlier separation. You may need to provide paystubs to prove these earnings as FL database may not be up to date.

      • Jc

        Thank you for the quick reply and the good news, takes some of the stress off.

      • Anna King

        My husband lost his job in Alabama after 17 years. I was forced to resign my job of over 15 years because our housing was supplied with his job. We moved back to Florida to be near family to help us out. I found a job in an office manager in a field I have never worked with. I have been a there for 7 weeks now. I fear they are going to let me go because they are not willing to give me time to learn their system. What I qualify for unemployment and with my work and Alabama have any bearing on that ? I am already applying for other jobs in case this one falls through. My husband has had no luck in finding a job

        • FL won’t grant a claim at this time because you do not have two quarters of work in FL. Your work history is in Alabama. Therefore, you apply for benefits in Alabama. You need to have earned $2,650 gross at the FL job in order to purge any penalty for the Alabama quit. You will need to provide Alabama proof of earnings (copies of paystubs) at the FL job. Alabama benefits are better anyway – $265/wk for 26 wks. v. FL’s $275/wk for only 13 weeks.

  • Thank you for your help!

    I was recently let go, it was a mutual separation in the letter. I started working in November 2016 and my last day of work was June 2017 prior to that I had worked in California from April 2016 – September 2016.
    Asides from that there has been 1 employer on the claim from Louisiana that I have not worked for yet it appeared on my claim.
    I received a letter from DEO stating the reason for my ineligible is : Wages in only one quarter of the base period. Even though my combined earning from California & Florida is well over $9k.
    What should I do, would you have any recommendation?
    Thank you very much!

    • FL won’t examine wages in other states unless you ask it to. Resubmit the application, asking for a combined-wage claim. FL will examine wages April 2016-March 2017. You may need to speak to a rep to get this done – or file an appeal requesting a combined-wage cliam.

  • Aaron Farrell

    I am currently employed for a company that hasnt worked me in two weeks. Can i file for unemployment or do i need to be officially let go first?

  • michelle timmann

    I live in Florida and have worked for a company for almost 4 years.They have decided to relocate but I am unable to join them….Would I be able to get benefits?

  • Mindy Harnish

    My 62 year old husband was just diagnosed with a compressed disc in his lower back due to many years of being an over the road trucker. The pain did not start when he was on the job, and we filed on my health insurance so he does not qualify for worker’s comp. He could be off for up to 6 weeks and may not be able to return to work at all. I see that Florida unemployment can be paid for medical leave, and that we will probably have to report every week as normal, but what about the 5 job contacts? He was told that his job will be waiting for him but it involves driving and lifting, which he is currently unable to do. I can find no guidance to this question on your web site. Please advise on what we should do to receive benefits.

    • Please link the webpage where you’ve “seen that Florida unemployment can be paid for medical leave.”

      Unemployment benefits are never paid to the disabled. Workmen’s comp would be the only other option.

      FL will establish a claim based on a quit for medical reasons. FL will not pay benefits unless he has a doctor’s release and is Able and Available – able to search for and accept work.

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