Georgia Unemployment – Do you know your Rights?

  Last Verified: January 2017  

The Great Recession hit hard in Georgia, with unemployment rates rising to 10% statewide. Manufacturing has not quite recovered, and the situation worsened when a hurricane struck the state in the Fall of 2017. Like other states, Georgia offers unemployment benefits to those who are out of work through no fault of their own. These benefits offer temporary compensation to the individuals who meet the eligibility requirements of the State Law. Like the unemployment offices of other states, the Georgia Department of Labor Seal of Georgiaadministers its employment insurance program within Federal guidelines.

Eligibility for Unemployment in GA

In order to receive the Unemployment Compensation benefits in Georgia, you must earn enough wages in a 12-month period from an employer covered by the state’s unemployment law. You must also:

  • Be a resident of the state
  • Be able to work
  • Not be disabled
  • Be available to work
  • Be actively seeking a new job
  • Have lost your previous job via no fault of your own.
  • Be completely unemployed or working less than full time with earning less than your weekly entitlement
  • Proof you are a legal resident of the US

Different rules of eligibility apply for union workers and military personnel. Therefore, check those rules before applying, if you are a union representative or working for the military.

Eligibility Requirements Explained

Able and Available

You must be physically and mentally able to work when you file your claim. If you lost your job because of a verifiable illness, but are able to work when you file, you may be eligible for benefits.

You must be available to accept an offer of suitable employment. If you are out of the country (for reasons unrelated to military deployment) or incarcerated, you won’t be available to work.

Separated From Work Through No Fault of Your Own

If you lost work for reasons beyond your control, like a lay off or plant closing, you may be eligible for benefits. Your actions or decisions can not cause the separation.

Looking for Work

You must register with Georgia Employment Services unless you are exempt. The Department of Labor will inform you if you are exempt. Exemption examples include workers who are guaranteed to return to their old job within a certain period.

Legal Resident

You must be a US Citizen, Resident Alien, or non-citizen allowed to work legally.

The Wage Earning Requirement and Base Period

As a threshold issue, you must earn enough wages in a 12 month period to be eligible. You must earn those wages from a “covered employer.” A covered employer is one that is required to pay into the unemployment insurance fund. Your employer will know whether they are covered.

The 12-month period is called a base period. The standard base period is the first four of the last five quarters prior to your filing the initial claim for benefits.

unemployment base period

This chart shows the base period.

To meet the wage earning requirement:

  • You must have earned wages from a covered employer in at least two quarters; and
  • your insured wages must equal at least $1,134 in the two quarters of your base period in which you earned the highest wages;and
  • your total wages during the base period must equal at least one and one-half times the amount of money you were paid in the quarter in which you earned the highest wages

If you fail to meet the wage requirement using the standard base period, the DOL will use an alternative method. They will use wages from the last 12-months prior to your filing a claim.

Calculating Your Benefit Amount

Your weekly benefit amount (WBA) is calculated by dividing the total amount of money you were paid in the two quarters in which you earned the highest wages by 42.
The state may use an alternative method to calculate your WBA if you have not earned enough wages in the two quarters where your wages were the highest.
The maximum and minimum benefit amount is set by law. The current maximum WBA is $330, and the minimum is $44. The maximum amount of weeks you may receive benefits fluctuates annually between 14 to 20 weeks, depending on the unemployment rate.

How to Apply for Benefits in GA

Unemployed Georgia residents can easily file a claim for UC benefits on the telephone, online or at a local career center.


You just need to call the OLIVoR – the Interactive Voice Response System of Georgia, and your claim would be filed. The number is 1-866-598-4164

Online Registration

You can certify your benefits online by visiting If you worked in Georgia within the last two years, you may use the online system.

In Person

You’ll have to find your local Georgia Department of Labor Career Center in order to file your unemployment compensation claim.

It is important to apply for your benefits immediately after losing your job. Since UC benefits are not retroactive, any sort of delay in applying might result in losing the benefits. You will need the following information when completing your claim for benefits:

  • Name & address
  • Separate letter or notice from your former employer
  • Social Security Number.
  • Names dates, and addresses of the employers you worked for in the past year and a half
  • In order to have your UC benefits paid via direct deposit, you’ll have to bring a check along with your bank account number and routing number
  • If you have been a Federal employee for the last 18 months, you are going to need SF 50 or SF 8. You might also need pay-stubs or your W2.
  • People who have been discharged from the military and are planning to file for UC benefits are going to have to present Copy#4 of their DD form 214.
  • In case you are not a US citizen, an Alien Registration Number would be required along with its expiration and type.

Maintaining Eligibility and Filing a Weekly Claim

The DOL requires that workers maintain their eligibility status while they receive benefits. If the state approves your claim, they will require you to file a claim for benefits each week, also called “weekly certifications.”

You may file a weekly claim online or by telephone using the same methods available for filing the initial claim. You can only claim benefits for the benefit week that just ended. Benefit weeks end on a Saturday.

You have two weeks to file a claim for any benefit week. You may file for two weeks at a time, but only for consecutive weeks. This is beneficial because you don’t have to worry about missing filing a claim one week. If you miss two weeks you will have to call the DOL.

To help determine whether you remain eligible, the DOL requires that you answer questions when you attempt to certify a weekly claim. These questions intend to determine:

  • Whether you are able and available to work
  • Whether you have quit or started a job
  • Whether you have earned any wages or income that week
  • Whether you are looking for work
  • Whether you have refused an offer of suitable employment

If you have earned wages, the state requires that you report those earnings. You must report them for the benefit week in which you earned those wages, not for the week you received pay. You must report your gross pay, not your “take home” pay.

Part-time Work and Benefits

You may work part-time and receive benefits in Georgia. However, the state will deduct gross (pre-tax) earnings over $50 from your WBA. If you earn more than your WBA, you will not receive a payment for the week in which you report the earnings.

Other types of income could affect your WBA, like pensions from a covered employer you worked for during the base period, severance pay or Worker’s Compensation payments. You should contact the DOL if you receive any payments, especially government payments, that you are unsure about. If you fail to report wages or other income, the DOL may believe you to be engaged in fraud, a criminal act.

Work Search Requirement

You must make a good faith effort to find work while you are receiving benefits. The state quantifies a good faith effort, requiring you to make three verifiable job contacts each week. A verifiable contact could be:

  • filing a job application with an employer
  • making personal contact with a person in a position to hire workers
  • filing an application using the Employment Services’ website

Keep a detailed record of your efforts. You may use Employment Services’ online portal for this purpose, or keep records of your own. The DOL perform random checks of all benefit recipients to see if they are making a good faith effort to find full-time employment.

Employment Services offers a range of assistance to job seekers. They also offer the federally mandated reemployment services program. The state identifies workers who may have difficulty finding work before they exhaust their maximum benefit amount. If the DOL notifies you that they have selected you to participate, you must respond or face losing benefits.

Reasons for Denial of Benefits

If you fail to meet the wage earnings requirement, the state will deny benefits. The DOL will notify you of the results of their analysis of your base period wages in a Benefit Determination. You may request a redetermination if you find an error or have additional evidence to offer regarding your base period wages.

Separation issues

If you meet the wage requirements, the DOL may still deny benefits. A claims examiner will observe your separation from employment and look at whether your actions or decisions caused the separation.

If you quit work to spend time raising children or to go to school full-time, the claims examiner may not consider that quit to be for a good cause connected to work. Going back to school may be good for you, but the decision to quit had nothing to do with your employment with the employer.

If your employer dismisses you for repeated violations of a rule or policy, the claims examiner may consider those actions to be misconduct connected to the work. Your actions caused the separation.

Other Issues

The DOL may deny your claim for issues unrelated to your separation as well. Denials may come from:

  • Refusing a reasonable job offer (without a substantial or compelling reason)
  • Being unavailable for work
  • Failure to make a good faith effort to find a job
  • Failing to follow various instructions from the DOL regarding your benefits

Quit and Still Eligible

There may be a good cause to quit work that will allow you to receive benefits. Some reasons may be directly related to work, some may not. Some examples:

  • Being harassed at work (sexual harassment, racial discrimination)
  • Moving from your residence because of domestic violence matter
  • Forced to work without pay
  • Forced to work in unsafe conditions

You will have to show that you made an effort to resolve the issue with your employer in some cases before quitting.

Fired and Still Eligible

Your employer may fire you for cause. The employer’s decision may not show that your actions were “misconduct connected to the work.” For example, if you are late to work because of car trouble, but you were otherwise a good employee, the one tardy may not be misconduct.

What Happens When Unemployment Benefits are Denied in GA

You may appeal any decision the DOL makes against you regarding your unemployment benefits claim, whether it’s a monetary determination or a separation issue. You have 15 days from the mailing date on the determination to file your appeal.

You must file your appeal in writing. You may mail, fax or deliver the appeal in person at a DOL Career Center location.

You must include your social security number, current contact information and the date on the determination letter.

You must also explain in detail why you are filing the appeal.

Find out more information about the appeal process at our page on filing an unemployment benefit appeal in Georgia.


Official Website

Program Contact Information

The Georgia Department of Labor operates fifty-three local Career Centers. All these centers are electronically connected to each other, and they offer a number of different services to the employers as well as the job seekers. In order to find the nearest center, visit the following website:

More info on Georgia unemployment benefits

File online


  • Brandon

    I was laid off for 2 weeks and then denied unemployment benefits. Reasons stated that I received a 30 day notice from my employer and that I had Vacation time to use. I did not have Vacation time and I did not receive 30 day notice, the company did not post it but they announced it during a meeting that is not during my shift. I found out about the lay off two days before which was the same time that my supervisor found out. I have documented proof of my Vacation time and the shift and hours I work that prove that what i was denied for is false. Do I have a good case for an appeal and will my company get in trouble. I am worried about losing my job if I cause a big fuss but I also can’t do without the two weeks pay.

    • You should win on appeal. Company may choose to fire you, of course. Companies can fire people for no reason at all. Know that in your situation in GA the most you can collect is one week’s benefits. GA has an unpaid waiting week before it pays benefits, so you will not be paid for the first week. One week’s benefits may not be worth the risk of a job loss. Your decision.

  • Opal McClellan

    I’ve been on my job for a year. I went from working 4 to 5 days a week, but the last 3 months ive been down to 1 to 2 days a week due to lack of work. Am I eligible for unemployment?

  • Melissa

    I received a lump-sum severance check more than 30 days after my date of separation. My appeal to receive the UI payments for the 5 weeks between my separation date and my severance check receipt date was denied. I filed each of those weeks as instructed. What is the policy in Georgia in cases such as these? Does Georgia have a “30-day rule” for receipt of severance as some other states do?

    • GA will not pay benefits until the equivalent weeks of severance are exhausted regardless if payment is lump sum. You have no grounds for an appeal. Read pp. 30-31, here:

      in particular:

      “If the weekly amount of such payment(s) is more than your weekly unemployment benefit amount, you will not be eligible to receive unemployment benefits for the period of time the payment(s) covers.

      “If these types of payments are made on a one-time basis, they will be divided by your average gross weekly earnings to determine the number of weeks covered.”


      Afaik, the 30-day rule is unique to NY. Many other states ignore severance entirely. Most southern states do not, some even reducing the claim amount rather than merely delaying payment.

  • Tee

    I was separated under a no-fault attendance policy. On my separation paperwork they marked “other” instead of “absenteeism/tardiness”. Do I have a chance of qualifying for benefits? Was my employer trying to assist me with receiving benefits or does it not really mean anything? Thanks in advance

  • Mickey

    My husband was fired from his job in June, the day before they gave him verbal warning about the argument that happened two weeks prior. On Friday, he got his paycheck with a termination letter. So he filed unemployment, he was denied. So he had an appeal hearing over the phone, which they said they only do in our area. So the place said he gave him verbal warning but no documentation was ever recorded. They had no dates. Also, the dates they tried to give was wrong. They argument started out with one of the employees, told him it was required to have specialty tools, when he was hired in they told him they provide specialty tools. So an argument started. They had to call the owner and the owner confirmed that the shop provides the specialty tools. Plus, when he was hired in they hired him in sales, then forced him into Mechanic position. Needless to say, I understand that Georgia is not for workers rights. But I work for a bigger company, even if we give “verbal warnings” our Hr requires to document all this. Smaller companies tend to use this to their advantage. What is the next step if he is denied again. Can was appeal that appeal?

    • You can file another appeal request to the Board of Review. When granted, the appeal would be a submission in written form – similar to a legal brief – with no new evidence presented. You should consult an employment law attorney and/or Legal Aid and the EEOC. It is very difficult to get states like GA to rule against an employer. These states often disregard evidence, sorry to say.

  • End of the road

    My job’s contract is set to expire at the end of the year. However they are trying to force me to relocate to a different office. I believe that this is in an effort to avoid paying unemployment. Can they force me to move?

    • If the distance is reasonable, yes, you cannot refuse the job. Otherwise, new location can represent a material change to your employment contract – assuming there is a substantial change in commute time/distance – and you can refuse the offer as unsuitable.

  • Ken j.

    I was receiving workers comp from 2015 up until March of 2017. My job closed in March 2016. I worked for the company for 3 yrs. I recently tried to file my unemployment but they say I’m not eligible for any benefits is that true. I couldn’t receive both at the same time.

    • Yes, it’s true. Yours is a common occurrence for those who’ve been on WC for long periods of time. The furthest back GA can look for wages to support a claim at this time is April 2016. If you’ve been on workmen’s comp for almost two years, there are no wages remaining in any base period GA would use to qualify you for unemployment benefits.

  • Jaycee Lewis

    I work for a company that is contracted to different schools. Because we are then technically employed seasonally by education system we don’t qualify for unemployment. I have been with them for over 7 years. For the first couple I qualified for unemployment but since a change in some laws I didn’t bother applying because we were told we no longer qualified. Are these rules still in effect? Do I still not qualify?

    • To my knowledge, there has been no change. Most southern states have been reducing benefits paid to the unemployed. It would be highly unusual for GA to have changed its rules. Apply anyway, just to be sure.

  • Carmen

    I been working for a company for 12 yrs. inventory is in a few days and don’t look good so I will be getting fired
    If I quit before they fire me can I collect

    • DO NOT QUIT. On what basis would you quit? You need a qualifying reason in order to collect benefits. Wait for the discharge. You can be fired and collect benefits assuming you haven’t committed misconduct. Quitting without cause is a sure denial.

  • Shaundia

    I worked a voluntary seasonal job from Dec 2016 to April 2017. Would I qualify for UI benefits?

  • Ted

    If I work seasonally, only one week in a year for an employer, am I eligible for unemployment when that one week of employment ends?

  • lori

    I have crones disease. My dr has done put me out of work for a week .returned back but no better working 40+ hrs a week .Monday through sat .it’s just too much on me .plus lots of added stress with setting goals impossible to reach .causing me to work alot more hrs that’s not helping getting any closer to them .but putting more stress on my body and health .my manager adressed the issue with dm he said I could resign or have dr put me back out .but couldn’t acomidate me with less hrs .and I’ve done been out again for 3 days sick .crones isn’t a overnight fix when you have a flare up .so I’m thinking I need to resign .but would I be eliable for unemployment?

    • No, not if you aren’t able to work a full schedule. One of the requisites of collecting unemployment benefits is that you be Able and Available – to search for and accept full-time work if offered. You can apply, of course. A quit for medical reasons is usually good cause. But, if you aren’t fit to work a full-time job, GA can’t pay you.

  • Richard Stahl

    I have been harasssed and intimidated by my manager. I have went over his head to corporate twice. The first time was because he was holding me back from a pay increase. I proved to management with records and logs that I was intentionally denied a tier increase. Corporate insisted that I be given a tier increase. After that, my manager continually harassed me and treated me unequal of that of my coworkers. I then filed a formal complaint on him and the Plant manager for refusing to get involved. The outcome of the investigation was that my manager did not harass or intimidate me because I stood up and argued with him a few times. Management ruled it “poor management”, not “harassment and intimidation”. I am still treated unequal to that of my peers. I am forced to work through breaks and lunches where as everyone else has their scheduled breaks and lunches. I get verbal counseling and have had closed door meetings with my manager, plant manager, and HR manager, with repetitive questioning over issues that have no merit. Interrogation style. As to make me frustrated hoping that I blow up and say something to get myself fired. I can’t trust my immediate management nor upper management. I can’t trust anyone! I truly feel like there is a target on my back everyday I am at work. At this point if I were to quit will I qualify for unemployment benefits?

    • If you quit, you will need to appeal a certain initial denial and hope that GA is fair in examining the harassment evidence at the appeal hearing. This will take several months, at least. Which means no benefits until you win the appeal. Certainly you are harassed, but convincing a state like GA to see it your way will be an uphill climb.

      You should consider filing an EEOC suit against this company and a complaint with the GA Dept. of Labor. You stand to gain far more than just GA’s paltry unemployment benefits. Working through breaks and lunch is a violation of labor law. See a labor attorney and/or call the EEOC directly.

      Employer may then fire you, which will put you in a much better position for benefit approval than an outright quit. Chances are, with those two lawsuits/complaints, employer will not contest your unemployment benefits.

  • Jane Doe

    The cook at my job walked up to me and knocked my food out of my hand on purpose and I reacted. Everything was on camera but they fired me and not him…could I qualify for the benefits ?

    • You can apply. If employer cites misconduct, you will be denied no matter who instigated the incident and need to appeal. The video shown at the appeal will prove the provocation was deliberate, although your reaction may still be deemed inappropriate. You might want to consider legal representation at the appeal. GA is not the most claimant-friendly state.

  • nikki

    I was fired from a job in Georgia and the reason was not following protocol for giving shots. I was written up for it on a Monday and was told if I did it again i would be fired. We got a new electronic medical records program that we had just started and it was causing issues for me and the person i was working with it had many glitches. Well I was fired on that Thursday for what I was written up for and no I didn’t do it again after being counseled what is the likely hood that i would get unemployment in this situation or should i get a lawyer.

    • Inability to do the job is not disqualifying. Machine malfunctioning is not your fault. However, GA is not the most claimant-friendly state. You may be initially denied and need to appeal. You probably should speak with an attorney.

  • Alblon Drake

    I work for a company in Georgia. Home office in North Carolina. We are on short time where we have to take unemployment for a week. Are we required to pay medical insurance during that week of unemployment.

    • Talk to your HR people. It’s up to the company to decide if they will pick up the cost for that week. Company’s argument will be you received unemployment benefits for that week in lieu of wages.

      Otherwise, your share of the cost for this insurance will most likely remain the same. If employer is deducting for health insurance each pay period, expect your next paycheck to include this full deduction as well as the loss of wages for that period unless you are told otherwise.

  • Cena

    Good morning,

    My husband has been verbally abused by his boss on a weekly basis. He yells and harasses him and threatens to fire him if he takes a day off without an excuse. He works around paint and his job doesn’t supply the proper protection and has documented health condition because of the unsafe environment.

    Today, his boss cursed him out in front of everyone. My husband verbally put in his two weeks notice, and his boss told him he didn’t need him. Can he file for unemployment?

    Thank you

    • He should have first addressed his grievances with his boss – the abuse and the hazards. Since he hasn’t done that, GA may initially treat this as a quit and deny the claim. He will need to appeal to prove abuse and hazardous working conditions.

  • Anthony

    I’m in a union in Georgia and the union is making everyone quit this company that I am working for because they have failed to pay our benefit package. Could I receive unemployment if the union ask me to quit?

  • Fran Tucker

    My husband received a job in Georgia and we had to move from Tennessee to Georgia. Because of this I had to quit my job in TN. Am I eligible for the trailing spouse unemployment benefit?

  • Ben

    I was forced to sign a resignation letter in order to get my last check. I had a job that was a large part commission and stated I had more withholdings than my check would cover, but he’d pay my base wage if I signed a resignation. Can I still file for unemployment?

    • You certainly can. You were coerced into signing the resignation letter. GA may initially deny b/c of the resignation. You should be approved on appeal when the facts are more carefully examined. Document as much as you can.

  • Alesa

    My husband was put on a sales performance plan (PIP) 3 months ago. His quota is unattainable and no other person on the team has reached it either. He has been told he will be terminated at weeks end. He had been with AT&T for 16 years, 16 months to retirement. Is he eligible for unemployment if he is fired?

    • Yes. But, he may need to appeal. Failure and/or inability to reach a sales goal, unless proved to be intentional, is not misconduct. If he has never achieved this goal, employer cannot now assert he is intentionally failing to perform.

      That said, know that most states will issue a denial if employer alleges poor performance. These denials are automatic and are NOT cast in stone. You will need to appeal to have the facts adjudicated fairly. Know that many appeals are won.

      When you appeal, you will be forcing employer to prove that failure to meet quota was intentional. Employer won’t be able to do that. Chances are they won’t even turn up at the hearing. He should easily win benefits on appeal.

  • Kathy Moore

    My daughter was laid off from her job ane Ga. unemployment sent a seperation notice to her former employer. They have not returned it. How long do they have in which to return it?

    • As long as Georgia allows. State laws are generally silent on this issue. The US Department of Labor requires approved claims to be paid within 21 days. But, if there is no “approval,” the process can be prolonged.

      Some states give employers a lot of rope. Employers can miss filing appeals in a timely basis and still be granted a hearing – sometimes a year after benefits have been paid. This, however, is not true for claimants. Timeframes for claimant appeals are strictly enforced. Miss the filing date, you’ve lost your rights.

      That said, states like CA and NJ will begin payments after 3-4 weeks even if there is no employer response. If a negative employer response is late-filed, those states will suspend payments and reinvestigate and/or hold an appeal hearing if necessary.

      The way to get action on a stalled claim is to email your elected state representative. Find yours, here:

      If three or more weeks has gone by and you have heard nothing, email your elected representative.

  • Amber

    I have been working for this company and pregnant. This week, they fired my CEO, refused to tell us any information, and brought in a new director who is trying to Change everything immediately. The stress is so bad it’s causing complications with my pregnancy. If I resigned, do you think I would be eligible for my unemployment?

    • You would need to provide employer with a doctor’s statement that the work environment is endangering the pregnancy, and you would need to ask employer to correct the issues causing this. This is called your attempt to preserve employment. If nothing changes, you quit for medical reasons and apply for benefits. Most states will approve benefits for medical reasons, but you would also need to provide a doctor’s statement that you are able and available to search for and accept work.

  • Clarence

    I’ve worked at a place for almost 1 year and a half , getting hours of 35 to 40 per week. Recently , they have dropped to 20 or so per week… can I get unemployment ? This drastic change has effected my responsibility to pay rent and more … what , if , can I do ?

    • You can quit on the grounds of material change to terms of employment – essentially almost a 50% cut in your hours and, consequently, earnings – and receive, possibly, GA’s max benefit of $330 for about 13 weeks.

      Divide your high quarter wages by 21. The result, not to exceed $330, is your approximate weekly benefit in GA.

      Or, you can stay, file for benefits, knowing that GA will allow you to keep $50 of gross earnings, deducting the balance from the benefit, leaving you with very little in the way of a net benefit. In other words, if you work 20 hrs. @ $15/hr, earning $300 in a week, $250 of that is deducted from your gross benefit. If you qualify for the maximum benefit of $330, GA will pay you $80.

      If you decide not to stay, first address the grievance with the employer requesting a return to your normal hours.

  • Lisa

    My husband was offered a job here in Georgia so we moved here from South Carolina, I had to quit my job there for this move ,can I apply for unemployment?And how would I do that for an out of state claim? It’s taking longer than I thought it would to find a job.

    • You moved from SC to GA b/c of hubby’s job transfer. Yes, you should qualify for trailing spouse benefits in South Carolina. Maximum benefit is $326 for 20 weeks. Apply for benefits online through the SC website, or call them directly. It’s not complicated. Interstate/out-of-state is irrelevant. Expect processing time of about four weeks before benefits can be paid.

  • Jasmine Buck

    Would if you can’t find another job within the 20 week period of unemployment, will i still be able to collect unemployment? Will i have to file another claim?

    • There are no further benefits when the claim is exhausted. You can file another claim when the first benefit year expires, but you will need to have worked during this time to be eligible.

      • Jasmine Buck

        ok, i got unemployment for 14 weeks. once my 14 weeks is up, will i be able to file another claim to continue to receive benefits within the same year? i got let go right before the holidays in November and my unemployment kicked in during the holidays so a lot of companies were not hiring so it was impossible for me to find work during that time.

        • No, you cannot get another claim within the same benefit year, as I said earlier, here:

          “You can file another claim when the first benefit year expires, but you will need to have worked during this time to be eligible.”

  • Timothy

    In May 2014 I had a nervous breakdown at work and was subsequently diagnosed with General Anxiety and General Depression disorder. I was put on intermittent FMLA in order to continue therapy. In May 2015 I applied and was transferred to a contract position out-stationed at a different location while I continued therapy. In Oct 2016 there was an incident where someone elses client in the workplace became hostile towards me in which I diverted the client professionaly. Due to the incident I have become extremely paranoid and my depression and anxiety have spiked. As of December 2016 the management determined that I was at fault for the incident and I was provided a “write-up” at which I reviewed, entered my rebuttal, and signed. During the meeting I reported to my employer how unsafe I felt and asked for a transfer. I also informed my employer of my documented medical condition and how the incident is affecting my health. As a result I was told to “pray about it”. Jan 2017 I was diagnosed with palpitations of the heart by my pcp and sent to a cardiologist whom provided the same diagnosis at which both doctors attributed to stress and I had to wear a holter monitor at work. I was prescribed Xanax with Lexapro. The incident has now been placed on my quarterly review. Can I resign with good cause? Can the employer use the write-up and quarterly review against me?

    • You need a statement from your doctors stating you are required to leave this work because of medical issues. Your employer’s write-up has nothing to do with your quit. Employer may or may not allege other issues which may or may not affect GA’s approval, but you are leaving for medical reasons. Your doctors will still need to assure GA you are Able and Available to search for and accept other work, you just cannot work in this particular environment.

      • Timothy

        Is FMLA documentation sufficent? My therapist has recently reduced my work schedule to 3 days per week part-time employment

        • No. You want to quit for medical reasons. You need medical documentation. If your employer is already accommodating you with FMLA and part-time work, it is unlikely GA will approve any quit, frankly.

  • Mechelle Ellison

    I worked for a company for eleven years and was able to earn overtime earlier last year they were sold to another company I accepted employment the company honored my base pay but they cut out all overtime I went from making 1200 every two weeks to 800 every two weeks where I live the cost of living is very expensive I’m unable to pay my rent if I decide to quit will I be eligible for unemployment being that my paycheck doesn’t cover my rent transportation food and utilities

    • You must first address the grievance with the employer in writing stating you accepted the position with the new company expecting your overtime hours would continue. Continuing in this job without overtime presents a financial hardship. Ask them to restore your overtime hours.

      If they can’t, you may be eligible for benefits, but may need to appeal to get them. The job no longer being financially viable is often recognized as a good cause quit, but the states usually will not grant a claim under these circumstances without an appeal. Expect to wait at least two-three months for benefits should you win the appeal.

      Meanwhile start searching for a better paying job. You may succeed in that effort before you get an claim approval.

  • Mr.?

    If fired from a job due to mistreatment and a boss refuses to file your discharge paper work ,and has a personal grudge . Can you still collect ui?

  • Leslie M

    I resigned my job for health reasons. My blood pressure spike a few time in the last few months, where I had to be transported to the hospital. Will I be denied unemployment benefits?

    • Possibly. Did you provide your employer medical evidence of the issue and ask for a less stressful position? You will, at the very least, need to provide GA medication documentation of this issue. Apply for benefits. You have nothing to lose.

  • Jessie

    I worked a seasonal job from September 2016 thru January 2017. Am i eligible for UI benefits?

  • Leigh

    I was told that by the company I worked for for 8 weeks that I was going to be taken off salary and go straight commission. Do I qualify for UI? Also my previous job whic I quit back in may. So I’m curious who will pay the benefits if I get them.

    • You absolutely qualify, provided you quit. First address the grievance with the employer in writng by stating the offer of “new work” on commission is a discharge from your salaried position, and the offer of “new work” is unsuitable in that it is commission only with no guaranteed income – diametrically opposite to the employment contract you had with this employer. You are therefore refusing this new, unsuitable work. State that if employer cannot restore you to your salaried position, you have no choice but to consider the offer of “new commission work” a discharge. If employer holds to its position on this, quit.

      Going off salary to straight commission is a material change in the employment contract. You have been discharged and offered “new work” which is unsuitable as to compensation since it is straight commission. USDOL law is very clear on this.

      Quit this job and apply for benefits so that you can search for a new “real” paying job. When you apply for benefits state you have been discharged – position elimination. Employer will allege you quit and refused new work – both of which are false. Employer, in fact, eliminated your paying position and offered you new, unsuitable commission-paid work.

      Georgia will evaluate your benefits based on earnings October 1, 2015-September 30, 2016, or Jan-Dec. 2016, depending on which base period qualifies you first, explained, here:

      You may need to provide paystubs/W2 from this latest job. GA’s database on earnings may not be current.

      Lastly, know that if you do not quit and choose to remain with this employer on a commission-only basis, you lose your rights to an unemployment claim as you have just redefined the meaning of “suitable work.”

  • Jessica

    I am currently accepting UI in GA, I am going to take part time contract work. Does this impact for eligibility? I don’t know how long the contract work is and I am still looking for full-time work while working this contract so should i keep applying for UI or stop?

  • Marie

    Hello I been on my job for 9+ years it wasn’t growing so I was offered a new position with better pay of course I resigned from my other job to make it better for me and my family !!! But the job started going down and she wasn’t able to pay us and she laid us off she paid us cash through out the time we were there can I receive my unemployment now that Im laid off and she said she may have to go down and claim our earnings she gave us what should I do and what do u advise

    • Apply for benefits. She paid you in cash. Did you keep a record of it? Be prepared to provide proof of earnings. You would be disqualified b/c of the earlier quit unless you earned 10x your weekly benefit at your new job, so you need to be able to prove earnings. GA states

      Individual must work for a liable employer and become unemployed through no fault of his or her own.

      Let GA determine how to handle this. It will take a while for GA to straighten this out. You won’t be seeing benefits anytime soon.

  • Employee

    I have been a full time employee at the hospital for over 5 years. As of 2 months ago, we have a new director who is cutting our full time hours down to 24 hours a week. We are expected to use our pto’s to make up for the hours where we were sent home. There have been weeks where employees have had to use 24 hours of their own vacation hours to make their paychecks a full 72 hours, our pay period is two weeks. Eventually we are going to run out of pto’s to make up for our lost hours and then we will also not have any to use for vacation time, which they are intended for to begin with, not to pay our own paycheck. Would we qualify for unemployment since we are not receiving our full time hours?

    • Yes, you are eligible for benefits because you have experienced a material change in your employment contract under federal law under UIPL 41-98.

      What you need to do is write your employer, asking for restoration to your previous full-time hours, or you will have no recourse but to consider this a discharge and an offer of NEW, UNSUITABLE part-time work, which you cannot accept and are refusing.

      You can wait until your PTO is exhausted to write the letter, if you wish, but the longer you wait, the more it appears you have accepted these new terms of employment and the weaker your position will be in asserting a quit because of material change. GA is not the most claimant-friendly state and may initially deny, stating by continuing to work under these new terms you have established a new definition of “suitable” work.

      Therefore, I strongly recommend you address this grievance with your employer immediately. If you are lucky, your employer will discharge you when he receives that letter. It is always easier to obtain benefits under a discharge, rather than a quit. Keep a good paper trail of all communications from and to your employer.

      When you do apply for benefits, state you were discharged. Because that is what has happened. You were discharged from the full-time job – and refused the offer of new, unsuitable work.

  • Kim

    I am a military dependant and not a resident of Georgia but work here, can I still collect unemployment?

    • As a general rule, the state where you work is the state which pays your unemployment benefits should you lose the job through no fault of your own. Where you live has no relevance. The state to which your employer reported your wages and to which your employer paid UI taxes is the state which pays your benefits. If that happens to be Georgia, then you file for benefits from the State of Georgia. You are free to live wherever you choose and collect benefits from the State of Georgia.

      Note: multi-state employers often report wages to a state other than the one in which you are working, in which case you need to file for benefits from that state.

  • Lollie

    I currently receive UI in GA. I own an LLC since 2014 registered in FL. I have not made any monety with this company and worked a full time secular job the entire time it has been open. I lost my job and currently receive UI for the w2 job I had. I just received an letter saying I was being Audited which I am assuming the LLC triggered it. I have my last years tax transcripts showing losses for the business as well as proof of my job searches and that I have been on interviews with an agency I am working with. Did I break the law

    • No, you have not broken the law. If GA is concerned about the FL LLC (unlikely), GA merely wants to verify that self-employment activities do not interfere with your ability to search for and accept work. Since this is a dormant company, there should be no issue. More likely, GA is auditing your work searches while claiming benefits. So, be sure your records are detailed and current.

  • Theodore Azriel

    I just filed a claim today on line. Can I correct information once it has been filed. My Former employer emailed me a PDF with some additional info. I received a small severance pay which I indicated. But than I recieved my last 2 weeks salary. I have the PDF attachment Which I recieved this afternoon (06/06/2016) I don’t know how to correct this
    Theodore Azriel

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