New Jersey Unemployment Information – Benefits, Eligibility etc.

  Last Verified: March 2017  

The Department of Labor and Workforce Development (LWD) handles unemployment claims in New Jersey. With the ability to apply online or by telephone, New Jersey makes it extremely simple to receive benefits when you find yourself out of work.Seal of New Jersey

Eligibility for Unemployment in NJ

In order to qualify for unemployment benefits in New Jersey, you must earn enough wages or worked enough hours over a 12-month period. The wages earned and hours worked must come from an employer covered by the state’s unemployment law. Additionally:

  • You must have lost your job through no fault of your own
  • You must be able and available to accept offers of suitable employment
  • You must be a US citizen or legally authorized to work in the US

You must maintain your eligibility status if the state awards benefits as well as show that you’re looking for work.

Eligibility Requirements Explained

Able and Available

You must be physically and mentally able to work when you file your claim. You must be available to accept an offer of suitable employment. “Suitable employment” is work similar to what you’ve done previously at a salary similar to what you have earned. The longer you are out of work, the less important job suitability becomes. You may be expected to accept work that doesn’t fit the definition.

Lost Job Through No Fault of Your Own

Your actions or decisions cannot be the cause of your separation from work. If you quit of your own decision, or were dismissed because of something you did, you may not be eligible.

Legally authorized

You must be a US citizen to be eligible. If you aren’t a citizen, you must be able to prove the government has given you authorization to work (e.g alien registration card).

Wage Requirements and the Base Period

To qualify to receive benefits, you must have worked for an employer covered by NJ unemployment laws (“covered employer”). The LWD examiner will look at your wages from such employers 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 a claim.

unemployment base period

This chart shows the base period.

The state requires you have worked a number of weeks where you earned a minimum of $168. For claims filed in 2017, you must have worked for a covered employer for at least 20 base weeks during the base period, or earned at least $8,400 during the period.

If you do not qualify using the standard base period calculations, the LWD will look at your wages over either:

  • The last four quarters before you file your claim, or
  • The last three quarters plus the weeks just before filing

You will receive a Notice of Claimant Benefit Determination informing you whether you qualify and if so, how much you’ll get each week, If you do not meet the wage requirements, you may request a re-determination of your wages. You should be able to support your request with evidence.

Calculating Your Benefit Amount

The LWD uses your base period wages to calculate your weekly benefit amount (WBA). The LWD uses the wages to find a weekly benefit rate and a maximum claim benefit amount.

Weekly Benefit Rate

The weekly benefit rate is 60% of your average weekly wage during your base period. The rate cannot be higher than the maximum WBA the state will pay, which is $677 currently.

Max Claim Benefit Amount

The maximum claim benefit amount is the most unemployment you can collect in one year. Find this by taking your base weeks (max: 26) and multiplying that times your weekly benefit rate. If you have 20 weeks where you earned at least $167 during the base period, you have 20 base weeks.

If the math sounds complicated, you can use the chart provided by the LWD to estimate your WBA and max benefit amount.

Claiming Dependents

You may claim dependents when you file a claim. Claiming dependents will allow you to increase your actual WBA as long as claiming dependents doesn’t cause the amount to go over the maximum WBA.

Dependents can be an unemployed spouse or partner, unemployed and unmarried child under age 19, or an unemployed child under age 22 if the child is still in school. You must have been substantially responsible for the financial care for the dependents, similar to claiming dependents at tax time.

One dependent adds an additional 7%. The next two dependents you claim will add 4% per dependent. You cannot claim more than three dependents.

You will have to go through a verification process to claim dependents. You will have to complete an application, which may be found online (inside the pages of the unemployment handbook).

Extended Benefits

During times of significant unemployment in NJ, the LWD may allow for additional weeks of benefits beyond the maximum 26 weeks. The federal government may also provide for additional unemployment insurance compensation through legislative action. Currently, there are no extended benefits available.

How to apply

You can file a claim online at the NJsuccess website. This site is only used to file new claims or to certify your weekly benefits. They do not answer questions about claims or provide information about unemployment insurance.

You must complete the entire application in one sitting. If your computer is idle for more than 30 minutes or you exit before you finish, all of your information will be lost and you will have to start over.

You must meet certain criteria to use the online claim system.

  • All of your work was in New Jersey in the past 18 months
  • You did not work for the federal government in the past 18 months
  • You did not serve in the military in the past 18 months
  • You did not work as a maritime employee in the past 18 months
  • You do not reside outside the United States

How to apply by telephone

New Jersey has 3 Reemployment Call Centers in New Jersey that you can call in order to file a claim. The operating hours for these offices are 8:30AM-6:00PM, Monday through Friday including holidays.

Because of the high volume of calls the Reemployment Call Centers receive, you must call during a designated time to file your claim. This time is based on your Social Security Number. Here is the current schedule of when you can call based on the last digit in your SSN:

  • Mondays if your SSN ends in an odd number
  • Tuesdays if your SSN ends in an even number
  • Wednesday through Friday, anyone may call

The phone number you call to file will depend on the One-Stop Career Center that services your area. Below are the locations and corresponding phone numbers.

  • North New Jersey – Call the Union City center at 201-601-4100
  • Central New Jersey – Call the Freehold center at 732-761-2020
  • South New Jersey – Call the Vineland center at 856-507-2340

For those who worked in New Jersey but live in another state, you must call (888) 795-6672.

Applying online is the fastest way to get your claim processed. However, those employed by the Federal Government or the military must file by phone.

What you need to apply

Before you begin the application process, make sure you have the following available:

  • Your Social Security Number
  • If you are not a U.S citizen, your Alien Registration information (type, number, country of origin, employment authorization card, permanent resident card, and name)
  • Information for all of your employers in the last year and a half (name, address, telephone number, dates worked, and reason for leaving)
  • Driver’s license or state ID card

Currently, NJ law requires “identity proofing” in an effort to combat fraud. You will receive a series of multiple choice questions based on your background. You must participate to receive benefits.

If you do not answer the questions correctly, the LWD will ask you to report to a claims center to participate in an interview and show proof of identity.

Weekly Certifications and Maintaining Eligibility

The LWD requires that you maintain your initial eligibility status while you receive benefits. So then, you must certify that status weekly (or biweekly). Once you certify, you can receive your WBA payment.

If you choose to certify each week, you will certify online. If you certify by telephone, you will do it every two weeks.

During the process, you will answer several questions meant to determine whether you maintain eligibility, are looking for work. The questions will cover these topics generally:

  • Are you looking for work?
  • Are you able and available to work?
  • Have you started or quit a job?
  • Have you earned any wages or received income?
  • Have you refused an offer of employment?

If you have earned wages during the benefit week(s), you must report those wages. Don’t wait until you receive the paycheck.

You can certify online:

  • M-F between 7AM and 6PM
  • Saturday between 8AM and 3PM
  • Sunday between 8AM and 5PM

You can certify by telephone between 8AM and 6PM M-F including holidays.

Part-time Work and Receiving Benefits

You can work part-time and still receive benefits, though the wages you earn will reduce your WBA for that week in which you earned benefits. The LWD refers to such benefits as partial benefits.

You cannot work more than 80% of your usual work hours and still receive partial benefits.

You may earn up to 20% of your WBA before the state starts deducting from your WBA. If you earn more than 20% of your WBA during a week, the state will make dollar-for-dollar deductions from your WBA.

The Work Search Requirement

The state requires that benefit recipients make a good faith effort to find work while receiving benefits. The LWD considers contacting at least three employers each week satisfies the requirement.

The LWD at any time may request that you produce a record of your job search efforts. If you fail to look for work, the LWD may not certify your claim and stop benefit payments.


Some workers are exempt from the work search requirement. Workers who have a specific return date from a lay off, who are part of a union shop or an LWD certified training program may be exempt.

The LWD may request that you participate in career assistance or training programs. Some of these programs may be a condition of your receiving benefits, so it is always in your interest to respond to communications from the department.

Reasons for Denials of Benefits

If you do not meet the base period earning requirements, you will not qualify for benefits. You will receive a notice regarding the determination. You may request a re-determination or file an appeal.

Separation Issues

Even if you qualify with base period earnings, the state may still deny benefits. You may have some issue regarding your separation from work that will cause the denial.

If you quit work without a good cause connected to your work, the examiner may deny your claim. For example, if you quit to return to school full-time, you have quit work for a personal reason and you will not be eligible.

If you are dismissed for misconduct, the examiner may deny your claim. The state defines “misconduct” generally as actions that show a disregard for your employer’s interests. Being constantly late to work without calling in is an obvious example.

Non-monetary Issues

There are some things you must do to remain eligible that aren’t connected to your previous employment. Failing to do this things may cause you to lose your benefits. Failing to look for work, failing to accept a reasonable offer for work or failing to respond to LWD inquiries may cause you to lose benefits.

Quit and Still Eligible

If your employer did something or failed to do something to cause you to quit work, you may still be eligible even though you decided to quit. Your employer may have transferred you to a location where it is unreasonable to expect you to travel to. You have to show that you tried to work things out with your employer before quitting no matter the circumstances to be eligible in these situations.

Fired and Still Eligible

While your employer may dismiss you for many causes, if the cause is not “misconduct” according to unemployment law, you may still be eligible for benefits. If your employer fires you because they didn’t think you could do the job, and you can show you made every effort to do the job, that is not misconduct.

What Happens When the LWD Denies Your Claim

After applying for your benefits, you will receive a determination in the mail. If you disagree with the ruling, you have the right to appeal the decision. You must appeal within 7 calendar days of receiving the determination or the ruling will be final. Complete instructions will be printed on your determination letter, but you must mail your appeal to:

New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development
Appeal Tribunal
PO Box 907
Trenton, NJ 08625-0907

In your appeal letter, you must include your name, SSN, telephone number, and address. You must also give a reason for your appeal. If you are filing your appeal late, you must also include the reason for filing late. More information on the appeals process can be found here.

Also be sure to read our section on the New Jersey unemployment benefits appeals process here.


Department of Labor and Workforce Development

File new claims or certify online

File new claims or certify by phone

All necessary forms

Division of Unemployment Insurance


Customer Service Office
PO Box 058
Trenton, NJ 08625-0058

Fax: (609) 633-2884


  • Rena

    Apply for benefits 9/22/17 after my temporary assignment was ended abruptly. Was advised that I had an open claim with a 0 balance to call back after 10/2. Filed on 10/3 as advised, received 2 weeks of pay. On the 3rd wk, I got a message stating my claim wasn’t payable at the time. I called n they told me there was an issue with my claim that I was scheduled for a non-monatary call. Had the call on 11/14/17. Was told to fax proof that I reported to the agency for work with 48hrs after my contract ended. Faxed the info over that same day. The adudicator stated he would contact me within 48hrs if he had additional questions. As of today still no call and my status is still “pended”.

    I am in NJ. Who is my state representative?

    Please any advice would be greatly appreciated.

  • Tony

    I live in NJ but worked in New York State for the last 8 years. My job was eliminated and I was let go in July. Although my employer’s officethe office was in NY the company also has a business (warehouse in NJ) . Do I apply for UI in NY or NJ. I hope NJ? please help as I cannot get a straight answer on this

    • Sorry, it’s NY. You worked in NY, your employer’s office is NY, employer no doubt has been reporting wages to NY. There would be no reason for NJ to have a record of your wages. Only if NY has no record of wages for you (unlikely) would you apply in NJ.

  • I am collecting unemployment benefits in NJ for the past 2 months. I just took a part time job. My unemployment benefits are over $8000 balance and my new claim will only give me $100 a week as a part time worker filing. For how long can I continue collecting my $100 a week?? Is it until I reach the 26 week mark? Or do I keep filing until I use up the $8000 balance?? Or, is it then for 52 weeks after the original claim is made?? For how long can I continue to file?? I believe it will only be for 52 weeks after original claim and the unused balance is lost or given back to unemployment. Does any one know the answer? If you are guessing please tell me its a guess. Thanks

    • This is not a guess. You can collect the balance on your claim until the claim expires or you’ve exhausted the benefit – whichever comes first. Any balance not collected before the claim expires is lost. However, because you are also working, you will be eligible for another claim when this one expires. So, if you don’t collect all of the $8,000, you will have a new claim to draw on. If you are still working part-time or are otherwise unemployed, apply again in NJ the week your claim expires in June/July 2018.

  • Bill M

    I recently lost my job in Las Vegas NV and moved to NJ. NV requirements say to register with local state employment office. I cannot find info on what that means in NJ. Any advice would be appreciated.

  • Karlie

    How long does it take for UI to close a claim? I notified them August 8th that I started work August 1st and yet I logged on and it still shows my benefit rate and everything. I do not want to risk over payment, any help?

    • Don’t worry about an overpayment unless you are still claiming and receiving money. If you are not submitting claims and not receiving money, there is no chance of overpayment. Your account remains available online whether or not you claim for one year from the date you applied. NJ automatically “closes” the account to future weekly certifications when no benefits are paid out. If you are again unemployed within the benefit year of this claim, you contact NJ to REOPEN the existing claim so you can certify for the remaining benefits.

  • Bre

    I claimed UI starting march 2017. My maximum amount to claim was $6,000 but they only gave me 3,000. Which ran out July 2017. I still haven’t found a job so I refilled for UI. I got a letter in the mail saying I can start claiming again august 29-2017 but when I went to claim my UI it says I have $0. What should I do?

    • You cannot file another new claim application until March 2018 – and that is only if you have worked between now and then.

      You said your benefits from your current claim ran out in July. Your claim is exhausted. You need to investigate why if the claim award was $6,000 you were only paid $3,000. Call NJ.

  • Amanda J Dean

    How do I change the date on my unemployment? I originally filed on the 4th of August but was given an extension at my job. So I never claimed my benefits. Now I need to. What do I do?

  • Francesca

    Hello! I was laid off on July 31, but didn’t file a claim until August 11. I just claimed weekly benefits yesterday, but it was for the week of 8/6-8/12. Is there any way to get the benefits for the week prior, or is it normal to miss that first week?

  • Hanani Shelomo

    I just received my Unemployment Insurance Instructions and Appointment Notice. It states that i will claim unemployment benefits for the first time on 07/19/2017.

    Is it mandatory that i must call (For the that first initial claim) on that wednesday or could i just claim online?


    • All NJ people are told to call the first time. Follow the instructions. I don’t know for sure what will happen if you don’t, but suspect the first TC is the trigger which sets up online claiming thereafter.

      • Chad

        Hello I have a question I received my letter and was told to file for first time August 2nd and I would receive my monetary call on August 3rd I received that call and she stated that she had to request my wages from other states that I worked in how long does that process usually take

  • Dan

    First and foremost I want to thank you for all your help.
    I was able to get through this morning on the phone. The lady said everything was in order and I could call next Tuesday to claim my weekly benefits.
    Can I just go back on line where I had initially filed my claim and file for the weekly benefits. I was doing this on Sunday. Thanks again, the ability to ask someone these questions is very stress relieving, thank you.

  • Dan

    Having a tough time getting through on the phone, static, busy signal, static, then complete silence. Can I go to any one step office, or must I go to the one for Middlesex County? I was thinking some of the others would be less crowded. Thank You.

  • RF

    I claimed unemployment successfully for several weeks via direct deposit. Then I changed my direct deposit to a different bank. Unfortunately, the routing number I gave was wrong (for a different bank unit). NJ’s web site claims that if there is a problem with direct deposit, they should sent me a debit card. I claimed on the 22nd of June. If the deposit failed, how long before I get the debit card ?

    Also, I was concerned what might happen if the ACH actually did go through to the wrong bank (unlikely, since the account number would have to match although I don’t know if they check the name). I tried calling NJUI’s numbers on Monday and today, but I’ve been told by an automated system to call back the next day. I can’t even verify that the card was sent (it doesn’t show any error online). Is there any way, I can verify this, maybe even visit a center personally (not eager to do that)

  • Paul Lee

    How do I change the claim date? I knew ahead of time that I would be laid off by a certain date and in my eagerness I started a claim 4 days earlier than I should’ve. I tried to cancel my claim or find where I could change the date from when it should start but I could not find any info on this. I’ve also tried calling dozens of times to the NJUI office to no avail.

    Any help in this matter would be appreciated. Thank you!

    • It shouldn’t matter. If you applied on a Monday and were laid off on a Friday in the same week, NJ backdates your claim to the Sunday of that week. So, the date of the claim remains the same no matter which day in that week you applied. I’d let it go, if I were you. Any penalties and benefits are calculated from that Sunday, not the date you applied or were discharged.

      Otherwise, if you really feel you need to do something about this now and can’t get through on the phone, visit a local NJ one-stop office. Again, I wouldn’t bother.

  • Dan

    My DQ period will be coming to an end, so I’m going to have to phone the call center to restart my claim. ‘m not looking forward to this because I can never get through and the anxiety is starting to build. Do you have any tips on getting through to a live person?

    Also I’m 62 so finding a job is going to be difficult, so I was thinking about Social Security. Can I collect both unemployment and SS without a penalty?

    Thank You very much, the information you provide here is great!

    • Yes, you can collect both SS and unemployment benefits. You do not need to report that income. SS has no effect on UE benefits in any state. Most people are able to get through to a live person in NJ. NJ is better than many states in that respect. Start dialing in the early a.m. Otherwise, visit one of their one-stop offices. Someone there can help you.

  • Dan

    First let me say the information here is OUTSTANDING thank you !

    Simple question, I had filed on-line after being terminated. I then had my phone interview and it was decided that it was simple misconduct. Should I continue to file every Sunday or just wait to reopen my claim, and to reopen it I must do it by phone, correct? Thank You!

    • You do not need to file claims during the dq period. However, whether you do or do not certify during that time and beyond, NJ will require you call and speak to a reprepresentative to reopen the week you are again eligible. If you do not speak to a representative, even though the dq weeks have passed and you are again eligible and have certified, NJ will not pay you.

  • xxblakrose

    I work for a staffing agency and my previous employer terminated my contract this Wednesday (6-7-17) for, “school, and misconduct.” I applied for unemployment and the confirmation page shows my monetary summary of benefits. But then it states I have a Non Monetary telephone appointment next month. I have been reading numerous replies concerning that this will determine if you will be approved for the benefits. Many people have commented that it is a lose lose situation so there is no point to even do the phone interview. But I was just wondering should I still do the interview and give my opinion/statement or am I better off just not answering the call and take the 8 week dq period but still get the claims later? Any advice is appreciated. Thank you.

    • In the past in NJ, not taking the call didn’t present issues. Of late, NJ is delaying rendering decisions when it cannot conduct the interview. Therefore, take the call – or expect a very long wait until you learn your status from NJ.

      Your biggest issue will be “school.” What exactly is the issue? Did you not attend mandatory training or did school create absenteeism? If the latter, NJ may determine you are disqualified because you are attending school which prevents you from working.

      • xxblakrose

        Well I’m taking evening classes and my set schedule is 7am-3:30pm. I worked in the lab so there was some testing that would take a while and therefore I wouldn’t have enough time to perform a certain test and make it to school in time if my classes are 4:30 or 5 because I must catch a train to Philadelphia for my classes. They originally adhered to my school schedule but we are so short staffed that we have been doing the job of 2 people so really there was not enough time of the day. The last 2 weeks I told them I cannot stay late since I have projects and finals for school. They were upset since some samples weren’t tested and they questioned me rudely and told me that they lost money because I didn’t test the products thus I got fired 2 days after I went to HR.

      • xxblakrose

        Any advice on how to handle my phone interview when the time comes? Especially with my “misconduct” issue.

        • Employer says you didn’t perform certain tests. There is zero you can say about that which won’t result in an 8-wk dq. But that is not a denial. School requiring you finish work at 3:30 isn’t unreasonable. Many people work 7-3:30 – so that shouldn’t be a problem for NJ, although you may need to appeal to get NJ to recognize that.

          • xxblakrose

            So I should just agree that I didnt perform my “job duties” even though they doubled my work since we are short staffed? So should I even bother telling them my side or just accept the 8 week dq?

          • Tell them your side – but it probably won’t change anything – unless you are very convincing. Workload doubled, you did the best you could, but it was impossible to complete the work in the time allotted. You do want to get on the record on that issue in the event NJ finds severe misconduct. That you will need to appeal.

            Otoh, if you get the 8-wk simple misconduct dq, it is normally not wise to appeal that, as NJ is known to elevate simple to severe on appeal. Best to accept the 8 weeks delay in benefits rather than risk losing the claim entirely.

          • wayne

            Daphne – you refer repeatedly to “dq” periods (e.g., 8 weeks). What is never made clear is whether this is merely a time delay from the start date of collecting or a reduction (i.e., subtraction) from the total 26-week maximum collection period. Please clarify.

          • It is a penalty delay and was mentioned once, here:

            Overall claim award is not reduced.

  • Kim

    I forgot to file my weekly benefits on Sunday. Did I just screw myself up or can I file on Monday and it will just hit my bank on Wednesday instead of Tuesday?

  • ML

    I resigned from a job to take another job that was not only paying more but had other areas to advance. I was at first job for 26 weeks, started the new job a week later, and after 6 weeks was “let go” because they said I was not moving at an accelerated pace. I was never told before hand that I was not doing well. In fact, I was being commended that I was doing a good job, and was told several times by the supervisor to take my time, there’s no need to rush, just learn the system, which I was doing, but I always worked at a steady pace and would ask questions if I needed to. I never got into trouble, or was ever reprimanded about my work. Then one day, I’m told you’re not working out, and we’re just going to end it here. So I was let go abruptly and was told that I didn’t do anything wrong, it was just about their benchmark.

    I applied for unemployment, and was denied because they’re saying that I didn’t work 8 weeks and/or earn up to 10x my base wage. My question is if nowadays these companies are doing this on purpose knowing that they can just yo-yo people around, get the work out of them they want, and then discard them just in time short of 8 weeks so they can’t qualify for benefits? because that seems so unfair and it puts families like ours in a financial bind. Also, is this worth filing an appeal or not?
    Please explain, thanks.

    • Generally, no, there haven’t been a lot of reports of people discharging prior to the 8-wks in NJ, although certainly employers would know about this requirement.

      That said, denials are not cast in stone. In your case, the interviewer isn’t authorized to go beyond the 8-wk work requirement. Any different intepretation of the rule is left to the appeal court. Most states recognize a materially better job is a good reason for a quit – even those with much stricter application of the rules than NJ. I would certainly appeal, and be prepared to document the significant benefits offered by the new position which is why you quit. Please post back with the outcome. Thanks.

  • Natasha

    Maybe someone on here can help me faster than unemployment. I’ll probably end up with the right answer faster, at least.

    I took on a small part time job as I’m going to school right now. I claimed unemployment while also entering the few hours I worked. One week, I had 0 hours. They had nothing scheduled for me. When claiming and they ask if I worked I put “NO”. I’m still employed, I just physically did not work that week. That screwed EVERYTHING up.

    What am I supposed to put as Unemployment will see it as I quit or got fired when neither are the truth. Should I put “YES” I worked with 0 hours?

    One of the unemployment representatives I spoke to told me that if that happens, I need to reopen my claim the week I have no hours. Unemployment will then send a letter to my employer to see if I was terminated. All the while holding my benefits from me. This seems like WAY TOO MUCH WORK!

    Any help is greatly appreciated!!!

    And the state wonders why they’re so backed up?!?!?!?! Give the proper training, hire good people, get it right the first time and I guarantee the wait will be reduced. While also reducing people’s blood pressure everywhere.

    • “Yes” with zero hours worked won’t solve the issue, either. Instead, your claim will be suspended until you call NJ because of a “pending issue.”

      Closing and reopening of claims is one of the extreme annoyances when people work part-time in almost every state. The system requires separations be investigated. One week without payment, the claim closes and you are required to call to reopen the claim at which point the state wants to know why you had no work the previous week.

      CA now has implemented a Q on its form where you can indicate the work is on/off to avoid some of this, but most states still operate the way NJ does.

  • karen

    Have a question

    I have a seasonal job. My initial unemployment claim showed me what I was to receive per week. Then I get 2 correspondence in the mail.
    1) amount of weekly benefits box 2 (0,00) partial benefit box 3 (0.00)
    2nd correspondence ( start claiming benefits on 5/31/2017.) There was no phone interview date or time set up..

    When I called the state they automatically set up a phone interview for 06/05. They told me I did not make the base week in the 4th quarter of $168.00 . I proceeded to try and tell her that even though I did not make that, I did make over the required amount of $8400.00 in a base year period. The State states on their website ( either 20 base weeks or at least $8400.00 in a base year period.
    Of course she did not want to hear it and set me up with a phone interview. I have filed previously for UI and never had this happen before.

    Is there something new going on in NJ?
    Thank you

    • Not as far as I know. The computer should have analyzed the earnings on the 20 base weeks OR $8,400. No idea why you have this problem. When you find out, post back, please.

    • Natasha

      Just want to let you know that I had to call unemployment 3 times this week!!! The first two times, I was lied to. One of the people who lied to me set me up for two appointments. The third person who took the time to look at my file and fix everything couldn’t understand what one of the appointments was for.

      What a debacle!!! The governor needs to know what a mess unemployment has become. The first 2 I spoke to could’ve helped me, they just didn’t want to.

  • Jason


    I filed a claim online earlier today. I received a confirmation number, but when I clicked on continue to complete the process, the next page said there was some type of maintenance issue and to try again later.

    I checked my claim status in the portal and it says no claim exists. Is this simply a timing issue in that the claim will take “x” number of business days to appear in the online portal after processing?

    I don’t want to re-submit another claim to create confusion, but I want to make sure the claim did in fact get processed despite the message I received. I printed out the confirmation page with the details and confirmation number for my records so I have the info at least if there is some type of issue.

    Any guidance is appreciated. Thanks in advance.


  • Kathy


    I appreciated this read, very informative. I do have a question. I just left the military under honorable discharge. I provided my DD 214 to complete the UI process. My home of record is NY but I was asked to try through NJ since I was stationed here. If NJ for some reason does not agree to provide me UI, how long does it take to cancel the claim here, that way I can go through NY.

    • NJ will approve you. If you’ve had no employment since your military discharge, you can choose to file in any of your state of discharge, your home state, or the state to which you will be moving. NJ has superior benefits to NY in several ways. You want a NJ claim. Again, you will be approved.

  • Jennifer

    I was on Medical Leave for 7 months and my job held my position for 6 months then I got let go. After the 6 months I got a part time job doing something different for 3 weeks that was to physical for me so I had to quit. I had a phone interview and just received a notice of determination. I was denied for the job I had that I lost for Medical reasons, but my determination for the job for 3 weeks says I’m approved. So does this mean I receive benefits or not??? The site still says pended I’m so confused. I filed an appeal for the first job, but I’m wondering if I will receive anything or will have to wait for the appeal.

    • A discharge for medical reasons is qualifying provided you then become Able and Available. The most recent quit, if you can provide a doctor’s excuse, should also be qualifying, as well.

      Post the exact wording of the decisions. There should something in that letter which states you need to work and earn x amount of dollars in order to purge the disqualifying quit.

      You may need to appeal. Sounds like interviewer hasn’t correctly evaluated your situation.

  • Amanda J Dean

    Please help. My fiance went to the New Brunswick office about an issue with his unemployment two weeks ago. They told him at that time that he had nothing to worry about and that his money should be deposited with in 10 days. Well he called today and they said they didn’t have anything on file for him. After they told him he didn’t need to call or anything. This is our rent money. If we don’t get this soon we will be evicted. should he go to one of the centers tomorrow?

    • Yes, another visit is in order. But a lot depends on the answers to these questions:
      1. When did he apply for benefits?
      2. Why did he lose his job?
      3. Was he interviewed?
      4. When was he interviewed

      If this is a new application for benefits, or reopening of an existing claim, processing takes at minimum three weeks and, in some cases in NJ, six weeks or longer.

  • Dori

    I am claiming unemployment in NJ during off season for pool company. We are opening up one week later than originally put on claim as start back date. Can I still claim the extra week that we aren’t open.

  • KSP

    I was laid off from work on the 31st. Do I file a claim now or do I wait until next week ?

    Also, I was thinking of going to Europe in the coming week for around 2 weeks, I do not intend to claim benefits for the time I’m out of the country. But I’ve heard that sometimes the DOL may call you back for a phone interview after you file your initial application. My case should be fairly uncomplicated — straight layoff, parted from employer on good terms with decent severance — so I wouldn’t anticipate a callback — but would it cause any problems with my claiming benefits for later weeks (when I am in the US and actively looking for work) if I got a request for a phone interview and was unable to participate or had to call from outside the country ?


    • You don’t need to participate in an interview to be approved for benefits. You should have applied immediately on layoff on the 31st, as the quarter is now turned and you have lost a quarter of wages in your LAG which could be very beneficial should you need another claim a year from now.

      That said, apply now. Let the process begin. It will take NJ a few weeks to approve the claim. If no weekly benefits are claimed, NJ will close the claim. Call NJ to REOPEN the claim. NJ will want to know why you weren’t claiming. You state you were out of the country and not searching for work. This is routine.

      • KSP

        So if a claims examiner were to setup a phone interview, and I was unable to participate because I was out of the country, it would not jeopardize my filing ? I could still be approved and would just have to reopen the claim when I came back (is that done through the website ?) and start claiming benefits for the days I was in the country ?

        Thanks very much

  • Jasmine

    So, i was terminated on february 14,2017 and i filed on february 26,2017. i had my on the phone appointment on march 28,2017 and i recieved an email that night saying i will be recieving an unemployment insurance benefit payment for the week ending march 4,2017 and yes i dd recieved that payment 2 days later in my bank account. during the same night, i checked my claim status and it said i am disqualified till april 1,2017 and that i have to reopen my claim by clicking the file a claim link after april 1st which im trying to do today on april 2nd. but also i did work for one day at a new job and i put it on my claim weekly benefits when i filed for the week ending march 11,2017 but i got a letter saying i start filing after march 15th. i had to resin from that job because i was in a car accident and i emailed the employer saying i wouldnt have a stable transportation. i told the unemployment rep this when i had my phone appointment. but what im getting at is, the first question on the reopen claim says have i worked since i last filed a claim of benefits? i would say yes or no because i had that job for one day eventhough they know and i did claim it on my weekly benefits fr that week so i knew they would question me when i had the phone interview.

    • The answer is no because you already reported that work on one of your weekly claims. You have not worked since.

      That said, you cannot REOPEN a claim online after a dq-period and expect to be paid if you do not talk to a representative even though you submit weekly claims thereafter. Call NJ or visit one of their offices to reopen this claim. Otherwise, you won’t be paid. NJ needs to physically speak to dq’d people before it will resume benefit payments.

  • Deb

    Laid off in February and found part time job in march. just accepted a full time job offer that starts in six weeks. If I quit the part time job will I lose unemployment benefits ? It’s over an hour commute each way to the part time job I took it hoping it might wind up full time. With gas tolls lunch pet walker I’m losing money. Thanks!

    • There is no good way to keep benefits flowing if you quit. NJ will suspend payments pending an interview. You will need to provide evidence that the part-time job is not cost effective. This will take several weeks – and chances are you will be denied and need to appeal to get a thorough review of your situation. All told six weeks, at least, if not more. If you’ve had this job a while, making your case will be doubly hard to prove.

      • Deb

        Thanks, That’s what I figured. I’ve had the part-time job about six weeks, I started about two weeks after I was laid off. The system doesn’t exactly encourage people to work part-time, does it? I wouldn’t have done it differently anyway.

        • Part-time work can present hazards to anyone collecting benefits. Especially, if one is considering working while collecting benefits, advantages and disadvantages of this job need to be clearly determined ahead of time. There is no easy way to quit a part-time job if it’s not working out and keep collecting benefits – especially, in your case, when you knew the distance involved when you took it.

          Now, if you take the full-time job, then quit the part-time job, are later laid off from the full-time job, resuming benefits on the existing claim should not present a problem, provided you’ve earned enough after the quit to purge any penalty for the quit. In NJ, you would need to work 4 weeks and earn wages equal to 6 x WBA after that quit and before layoff in order to resume benefits.

          • Deb

            Thanks for the info. Do you know how long the money in the original claim is available if something happens to the new job after the four weeks/six x wbr?
            Here’s a spin on my original question. I’m also freelancing. What if i quit the part-time job and focused on the freelancing for the six weeks till the full time job starts? It’s a regular gig and I can make about the same amount of money that I make at the part-time job and wouldn’t have the commute expenses. Do they care where the money is coming from? I feel like I made this more confusing than it needed to be, but was determined to hit the ground running after the layoff, so took both opportunities.

          • If you quit the part-time job, NJ will suspend benefits pending an investigation into that separation regardless of your SE work.

            However, SE income is not bona fide and is not a substitute for W-2 income from your part-time job and will have no affect on NJ’s decision to suspend or stop benefits. If you stop claiming altogether, you don’t report the SE income. Otherwise, SE work income needs to be reported when it is earned – not paid – with each weekly claim you submit.

            If you lose the new W-2 job, that SE income is irrelevant. What matter is your LAST employment. Should that happen, reopen the NJ claim provided it has not yet expired.

  • Jon J

    I’ve been let go this week (part of a large layoff). I need to visit some elderly and infirm relatives outside the country (I was planning to do that prior to being let go) for 2-3 weeks. I was wondering whether
    1) I could start my job hunt and apply for NJ unemployment benefit for 1-2 weeks, not apply for the weeks that I’m out of the country, then reapply after returning.


    2) Go on vacation first, then apply after returning and starting my job hunt in earnest. I would give the layoff date as the actual date.

    In either case, I know I would not get any benefits for the week I don’ t apply — I just wanted to know if such a ‘break’ either in opening my claim or in the ‘middle’ would present a problem and cause my benefits to be denied even for the weeks I’m actively hunting.

    • Delays in application for benefits and/or breaks in claiming benefits on an existing claim, in and of themselves, do not result in denials. You stop claiming when you leave the US. You call NJ when you return to REOPEN the claim.

      Therefore, #1 is your answer. Apply for benefits now. Do this before April 2nd in order to preserve a LAG (unused earnings) for a possible 2nd year claim. NJ will begin to process the claim. You can claim the weeks you are in the United States and searching for work. Do not attempt to claim while out of the country – even if you are searching for work. Out-of-country attempts to claim can cause all manner of problems.

      When you return to the US, call NJ to REOPEN the claim.

    • Jon

      Thanks very much for your response.

      So as far as I can make out, the reason to prefer option 1 is primarily to preserve benefits for a possible 2nd year claim if I go back to work and am let go again ? The reason I’m asking is that it’s possible I might leave the country in the coming week if I can get a cheap last minute ticket, so I could not legally claim for the coming week, and might have to go with option 2 anyway.

      I just wanted to confirm that the downside of not claiming immediately would be relatively limited — that may play into whether I try to leave immediately or after a week.

      Thanks again

      • It doesn’t matter if you don’t claim that week. Apply and get the process going now. You don’t have to claim for NJ to start to process the claim. You wouldn’t be allowed to claim that first week anyway until Wednesday, April 12th, earliest. Usually NJ sends you a letter 2-3 weeks after application, telling you to submit your first claim by phone on a Wednesday. Thereafter, you can do online claiming. If you don’t submit any weekly claims before leaving, the claim will still remain established on NJ’s books and will be closed until you call NJ when you get back to REOPEN the claim. Submit your application today.

        • Jon

          Thank you very much. I think I understand the semantic distinction between filing an application and claiming benefits now.

  • Jessica Valdes

    I was forced to resign involuntary on 1-26-17. I was given 2 weeks extra pay and vacation time. I was with my company 9 years. I filed unemployment and had non monetary interview 3/10/17. I have not heard anything yet. My claim status online says pended. What does this mean? I have still filed benefits every week.

    • The forced resignation is the issue. You may get a denial and need to appeal. Benefits are granted when resignations are coerced, but the initial interviewers are generally not authorized to approve claims under these circumstances. Call NJ and ask the status. This should trigger a decision. The sooner you know if you need to the appeal, the better. Appeals in NJ are scheduled about 4-6 weeks after you request them.

  • Emma

    My claim date was 10/23/2017 but I did not receive my benefits until approximately 1month later. I know unemployment is 26 weeks. Does that end 26 weeks exact from your claim date? I would like to know when exactly will be my last day/week of my UI benefits. Thank you.

  • Robin

    I was laid off back in January, but didn’t begin the process of filing for UI until a few weeks ago since I had some severance. I’m new to unemployment so am not sure how this works. I submitted my first two weeks as “Not able to work” and “Not looking for work”, so of course, I don’t expect to be paid for those weeks. I certainly didn’t want to lie about it, but am wondering if this will mess up my claim. The third week I was able and looking for work so submitted a claim for that week as such. So my question is this: If I need to take a week off from looking for work, is this the way to do it?

  • I filed online and got a confirmation number and a monetary summary on Friday 3-3-17 … do I have to wait for notification of when and how to claim befints by mail or should o call and start clamming.. I was laid off on 2-10 -17 but was on vacation in Mexico for 2 weeks can I claim any of those weeks ?? Or should I just claim from the day I filed .. it says in paper date of claim is 2-26-17 .. when should I file is my main question?? And what dates should I use … my ss last number is 9

    • You can’t claim weeks you were on vacation. Further, no state pays benefits earlier than the week of application. Wait for instructions from NJ. Normally, you are instructed to file your first claim by telephone on a Wednesday. Thereafter, you may file weekly claims online on Sunday.

  • Francess

    I was working for a tech company as a salaried employee for two years, and I left because I was tired of working 60 hours a week and only get paid 40 hours. After speaking to my manager about this situation, he said he would give me a raise in two weeks. Three months pass he did not give me the raise, nor did he respond to my emails. I work without a break, it was too much, so I gave my two-week notice and filed unemployment and was denied. Luckily, I found a Full-time job after the NJ unemployment denial letter. I work for the new company for four months, and now I’m unemployed again because it was only seasonal. I filed for unemployment again. It’s been three weeks since I submitted a claim and I still haven’t received any payment yet. Unable to file my weekly benefits online the website keep telling me to file by phone. When I do, it states payment will be credit. I’ve been looking for work no luck. I ran out of money. I need the funds to pay for car insurance food, rent, and loans. I don’t know what to do.

    • Sounds like the system is taking your certifications, but your claim has not yet been approved for payment. It is not unusual to wait at least four weeks before benefits are paid. Usually, the first time you claim, you need to do it by telephone on a Wednesday. Thereafter, you can submit weekly claims online on Sunday. The certifications accumulate in the system and are paid once an approval is forthcoming.

      If you’ve only been able to submit one weekly claim by phone and the system won’t take the following weeks, call NJ to speak to a rep or visit a NJ career center to get this cleared up. There are people there to talk to and phone banks which will get you through directly to a CS rep, if needed.

  • Jacqueline Mercurio

    Since some of my employment was out of state within the benefit period, I understand that I am only allowed to file by phone. It is absolutely impossible to speak with a live person on the phone. I know I am not alone when I find many other posts and forums regarding this issue when Googling the problem. After calling, calling, calling, for days trying FIRST THING IN MORNING AT 8:30 finally got through to an automated format wherein I entered the replies to questions asked and then was advised to stay on the phone for an agent. The phone rang, rang, rang, for over ten minutes and then dropped into the automated system again that begins the original call all over again. PLEASE, I am in panic mode. I live paycheck to paycheck. I will lose my apartment and car and be homeless if I can’t get through to SOMEONE. Please, please help. I don’t want to be homeless. How can I speak to a person? I have tried all numbers including a “secret” number circulated by the internet for others with the same problem. PLEASE HELP.

    • Why is it your understanding you must file by phone??? This is not correct. NJ allows you to file weekly claims online whether you are in-state or out-of-state. Most people do this on Sunday, with a direct deposit to their bank account or debit card received on Tuesday. If you have not yet set up an online account, do this now and file your claims. Otherwise, immediately visit your closest NJ career center office. NJ has many of them. There you can speak directly with someone who can help, or use their phone banks to get to a rep.

      • Cassandra Hudson

        I have done my phone interview and all they said if i got denial letter in a week it been almost three week and i still haven’t received a payment yet

        • Why did you lose the job? Normally, in NJ, approvals are put through immediately after interview. Three weeks later with no answer probably means imposition of a simple misconduct penalty and an 8-wk dq from benefits beginning week of discharge. Thereafter, you are able to collect.

          Call NJ and ask about status. By now you should have had a decision letter. Do not appeal a simple misconduct penalty if it is imposed. NJ is known to elevate simple to severe on appeal – which means no benefits for you at all until you work again and experience another separation.

          If you get nowhere with NJ, email your state rep – reps get the states moving. Find yours, here:

  • Mia

    I applied for benefits via the internet and was approved. I received a letter 3 months later “Claimant’s Statement for Issue Clarification”. It said I had 10 days to respond. My 10 days isnt up yet i checked my claim status and it doesnt say pending anymore it now says nothing and it has my last payment was made 2/12/17. does that mean i no longer get unemployment benefits?

    • Call NJ or visit one of their offices. If you claimed for week ending 2/18 and still haven’t been paid, your payments have been suspended until you resolve this “Issue Clarification.” Report back on what the issue is. This is a new procedure from NJ – which could mean anything.

  • Jerry

    I didn’t realize until today that I somehow misread my NJ unemployment insurance claim instructions and went online to claim my first benefit on Sunday, February 19th instead of Wednesday, February 15th. Did I just create a problem for myself? I was laid off January 31st after working 2 days that week. The statement I received when I went online to claim my first benefit indicated that payment was for week ending 2/4/2017, but it appears that no benefits were paid (perhaps because I worked 2 out of the 5 work days that week?). The confirmation e-mail I received after completing my online claim provided a confirmation number and stated that my claim “has been received and is being processed”. Just wondering if I now need to contact/call NJ Unemployment to “fix” something or claim benefits again tomorrow or that there is no problem at all.

    • Leave it alone. If there were a problem, online would have so indicated. You should have also claimed weeks ending 2/11 and 2/18 by now. If you haven’t yet done so, do that today or as soon as the system permits. Also, on Sunday, submit another claim for week ending 2/25.

      In future, keep claiming weekly online on Sunday. Depending on where NJ is in its processing, you will not see payment until three-four weeks after application, earliest – and only if yours is a clean discharge/layoff and doesn’t require NJ to investigate.

      Once you’re approved, claiming on Sunday usually means a deposit to your bank account and/or debit card on Tuesday.

      FYI, NJ grosses up the weekly benefit 20% (Partial Benefit Rate aka PBR) and will deduct the gross earnings for those two days from the higher PBR. So, you do the math. Do those two days exceed WBA+20%? If so, no payment for that week.

  • Rozz

    I was laid off at the end of July 2016. It’s now February 2017 and I haven’t found a job even though I’ve been aggressively looking for one (I have proof). I even received advice from an outplacement counselor. My New Jersey unemployment insurance is almost used up. What can I do to keep getting insurance until I find a job?

  • BernardG


    I filed for unemployment on 01/27/17 and had a phone interview on 2/8/17. This is my first time on unemployment. The lady told me that she will call me on Friday 2/10 if she had to rebuttal but I never heard from her. I been with my company for 7 years and was terminated because I worked part time for another company and they thing since I was salary I canceled or rescheduled worked withs to work for the other company. I tried to explain this to the unemployment rep but it was like she kept cutting me off and didn’t want to hear it. I told her I had to pull my 401k to pay my rent for the month of February. I faxed over what was needed and she said to keep claiming. I seen that she already put in the 1 dollar penalty for the 401k, that will be deducted. Today is the 15th, I’m not sure if I will hear anything but what do you think the chances are in getting my unemployment? Oh, and she told me that since I quit the other job, which I was only employed for 2 months, it can affect my claim. I been quit the job why does that have to do anything with this job I was fired from. Any info would be much appreciated.

    I’m also appealing my company decision for the termination.

    • NJ has to investigate all separations for a couple of reasons. One, NJ requires you be on any new job after a prior quit for at least eight weeks – and, if you have a quit without cause – even if you’ve worked elsewhere longer than eight weeks, NJ requires you earn a certain amount before that quit is “purged.”

      What other job did you quit and when? Was it the part-time job that led to your full-time employer letting your go? If so and you quit that part-time job AFTER you were terminated from the full-time job, you won’t get benefits unless you have a really good reason for that quit.

      On the other hand, if you are talking about an earlier quit preceding either the part-time/full-time jobs you are discussing here, it probably won’t affect your benefits.

      • BernardG

        I worked a part time job for 8 weeks exactly. The reason I quit because I didn’t have any hours and when they did have hours it conflicted with my full time job. That’s why I resigned from that company. I quit that part time job on 01/07/2017, and was terminated from my full time job on 1/27/2017. I really hope it doesn’t affect my benefits. They never provided me with separation papers either.

        • If you quit the part-time job because of no hours, that is good cause and that quit shouldn’t affect your claim. Quitting because of a conflict w/your other job is not good cause unless employer reneged on its original employment contract with you and was offering you hours for which you had not agreed when originally hired.

          If you mentioned the conflict, you may have an issue, depending on what you told NJ and how the interviewer interprets what you said. Sometimes the final decision will in no way accurately reflect your conversation. NJ will also query that employer on the circumstances of your quit.

          There isn’t much you can do now, except wait. If you have an issue w/NJ, post back.

  • Vince Dipietro

    I was let go for a policy violation, so I filed my claim online & waiting for response, however the lady from HR said when the claim comes across her desk that she will approve it, so my question is even if I was fired & my employer approves it on there end will nj deny me or penalize me the 6 weeks still ?

    • The only way your HR person can “approve” the claim is if she does NOT state you were discharged because of a policy/rules violation. And, don’t you say that, either. When you apply for benefits, you say you were fired, reason unknown. If she doesn’t state policy violation and you don’t, NJ will approve the claim. Your best bet, if NJ schedules an interview, is not to take it. It will matter not a whit what you say, and you very well could incriminate yourself.

      Otherwise, if either she or you have made incriminating statements, NJ will NOT DENY – but it will, in all likelihood, impose a simple misconduct penalty and disqualify you from benefits for eight weeks from week of discharge, after which NJ will pay benefits if you are still unemployed.

      If an 8-wk dq is imposed, do NOT appeal. NJ commonly, on appeal, will elevate a simple MC to severe – and then, for sure, you have been denied until you work again and experience another separation.

  • Candace

    I applied for benefits via the internet and was approved. I received a letter a week later “Claimant’s Statement for Issue Clarification”. It said I had 10 days to respond. I called unemployment, and they said they did not show any issues in their system, and processed my weekly claim. Has anyone heard of this before.

  • Sue

    My employer retired on Nov 1, 2016 . I have still been working for him to clean up the practice, make sure patients received their medical records, etc. My last pay was Jan 31, 2017. I have a home in North Carolina that is for sale and am renting a house in NJ and have lived in NJ now for the past 2 years. My license is still North Carolina. Will I have trouble getting unemployment in NJ? Thanks for any advice.

    • You apply in NJ. Unless a military transfer, where you live has no bearing on which state pays your benefits. You worked in NJ. Your employer no doubt deducted NJ SUTA taxes, reported your wages to NJ. When you move to NC, notify NJ of your change of address – which is the extent of any relevance NC has on your NJ benefits. Fwiw, NC is one of the least desirable states you’d want to be collecting benefits from. Very low benefit and only pays for 13 weeks v. NJ which pays 60% of average weekly wage for 26 weeks.

  • i was working part time job for one year and full time job for seven years. i was arrested for 2nd degree offense at part time job and fired. my fulll time job suspended me until matter us resolved. i filed for unemployment because i own house and have two children to raise. i was denied unemployment benefits from the part time employer and was told i have severe misconduct. will i be able to receive unemployment from full time job because suspended please let me know because dont know what to do

    • If your arrest was a violation of your full-time employer’s rules/code of conduct, you will be initially denied and need to appeal. NJ will not give you a break on this. This process will take at least two-three months. You may not win that appeal, either. You might want to consult an employment atty. Sorry the news isn’t any better.

  • Jessica Rivera

    I recently filed and unemployment claim and was approved right away and started receiving benefits. shortly after I was notified that my employer was appealing the decision. The appeal hearing was held this week and the notice online said “you are disqualified until 1/28/17, Please reopen your claim after 1/28/17 by clicking on the file a claim link.” Does this mean that I should not have received the original award and there should have been a waiting period? If this is the case when I begin claiming weekly benefits again will they keep the payments until its paid back then release future weekly claim payments to me? Also, when you reopen a claim do you have to go through the entire process again with the phone interview and all? If

    • “Does this mean that I should not have received the original award and there should have been a waiting period?”

      Sounds like you got an 8-wk dq for simple misconduct. Yes, NJ should not have paid you. Often payments begin before employer responds.

      ” If this is the case when I begin claiming weekly benefits again will they keep the payments until its paid back then release future weekly claim payments to me?”

      Yes, if you keep submitting claims, NJ should offset what you owe with those future weeks, until paid, but verify that w/NJ when you call to reopen. After a dq period, you cannot successfully reopen online even though you may be given that option. You MUST CALL to reopen. NJ will not pay benefits after a DQ until it has talked to you.

      “Also, when you reopen a claim do you have to go through the entire process again with the phone interview and all?”

      No. Again, CALL NJ to reopen this claim.

  • Scott Vincent

    I was laid off on 1/2/17 from my job. I applied for unemployment Friday 1/6/17. I received information from unemployment that I could start claiming after 1/18/17. I claimed for three weeks on 1/23/17 but it is telling me that nothing is payable at this time. And of course when you try calling you can’t get through, which I think is completely unacceptable. If I look up online the status it tells me it is pending. Where do I go from here?

    • Very few states begin benefit payments any earlier than three weeks after filing – unless employer has notified the DOL of the layoff and normal processing is bypassed. Three weeks after filing is Friday, January 27th, so you have a couple of days, yet.

      Pending means NJ hasn’t approved the claim, as yet, and may be awaiting a response from your employer. After three weeks, if you weren’t fired/discharged, NJ will begin payments without an employer response, but know that if employer objects the payments will be suspended pending further investigation.

      Approvals in NJ can take up to six weeks, easily. Have you been interviewed? If so, when? Were there issues with your employer?

      If there were no issues, then expect to see a status change from ‘pending’ over the weekend and some money next week Tuesday which is when NJ normally pays if you claim on Sunday. Otherwise, next week call NJ and ask status. Or, visit an office. NJ has many of them.

      • Scott Vincent

        I was not interviewed and no issues with employer. This a temporary lay off for the winter.

        • Then, that is best-case which means three weeks, earliest, after application. You should see an online status change over the weekend and be getting some money next week. If not, call NJ.

          • Scott Vincent

            The claim status has changed from pending to “an issue has been identified on you claim. Please attend the non-monetary appointment listed below so a claims agent may resolve this issue” The telephone appointment is for Feb 27. Really!!!! We can’t go another month without getting any pay. So at this point I should go to the unemployment office on Monday?

          • Apparently your employer returned its response which has raised a question. NJ delays these interviews because it routinely assesses 8-wk dqs for simple misconduct in order to appease you (no denial) and employer (no immediate payment). That said, a phone appt 8-wks from date of discharge is way too far away – even for NJ. Normally, those are held within five weeks from date of discharge, latest.

            You can get this monetary appointment moved up. First try calling NJ and tell them it was a simple layoff, you CANNOT wait until end of February for your money, you want that appointment moved to next week. The rep may be able to accelerate the appointment. Or, visit an office, but I think it less likely someone at an office could get this appointment changed. No harm in trying of course.

            Otherwise, absolutely email your state representative – reps have had success accelerating these appointments. Find yours, here:


            Demand an immediate appointment. Best I’ve seen NJ do is move the appt. up two weeks, but too much time has gone by already. Again, something in that employer response has triggered this.

            Good luck.

          • Scott vincent

            Thanks for your response. Who do I call in nj? The unemployment office? You can never get through. Or is there someone else to call in NJ.

          • You call the UE office, any CS rep. Most callers get through to NJ eventually. Start calling first thing in the a.m.

            Otherwise email your rep this weekend. Find him at the link provided above. Given that NJ has now put you on hold until the end of February, you are certainly justified in contacting him. That’s what I would do first. Chances are you’ll hear from him on Monday.

  • Britlee

    So my job closed down in November and I filled for unemployment online. It took a month to receive my benefits. I collected for three weeks and received a letter to go to a class at UI. The class was three hour but I do not understand why I have to go to this class. I told them that my job is reopening in April. I honestly have been getting the run around.

    • Doesn’t matter if job is “reopening” in April. A lot can happen between now and then and the job may not be there. NJ wants to be sure your resume and work search skills put you in a good position to find other work. Unless NJ has granted you a waiver of work search, you should still be searching for work. The weekly claim asks you this. If you are claiming and not searching for work, you are committing fraud.

  • Omar

    I’m about to file for unemployment since I lost my primary job. For the last two years I’ve also owned a small business registered as an LLC and have collected $0 during that time. Will this harm my chances of receiving unemployment?

    • No. The LLC is dormant. If NJ asks, you provide evidence of that fact.

      • Omar

        To clarify, it’s operational but I have employees working there. Since I opened I have not paid myself, just my employees. Not sure if that changes anything. Thanks for the help!

        • So, the business has revenue, you just haven’t paid yourself because the revenue is zeroed out by cost-of-doing business. An LLC’s net income is normally a pass-through to you personally whether or not you pay yourself – unless another entity is paying taxes. NJ may want to see your tax returns.

          Also, when claiming benefits, if there is a net profit, whether or not you pay yourself, you need to report that net income when you file weekly claims. This generally has been NJ’s position on SE income – report the net profits after expenses as income.

          The issue will then become are you self-employed and will this self-employment prevent you from searching for and accepting full-time work. In other words, are you Able and Available. If you’ve been operating this LLC while working full-time, you should be able to reassure NJ on A&A.

          You might, however, still get a denial initially and need to appeal. Interviewers are not given much latitude on approvals except on the most basic of issues.

  • George

    I was let go from the company i was working at on 01/19/17 , after being there for 13 years, The reason they told me it was because my work performance was not meeting there high standards, so they stated it was strictly a business decision, i asked if i can apply for unemployment and they said yes, they will not deny me that right. So i applied for unemployment the day after, and at the end of applying i got a notice stating you have successfully applied for unemployment and you will receive a notification of when and how to claim your benefits…it’s been 5 days since then, and i still have not received anything, is there anything wrong? am i being denied because i was let go for low performance? i am really worried.

    • It has only been two business days since you applied. NJ won’t be in a position to pay you for at least three-four weeks. Wait for written communication from NJ which you should be receiving this week or next.

  • William Horvath

    I had a hearing for an appeal for my unemployment benefits in December and have not been notified of the final judgement my mail. I have tried to the call center but i never get through. How can i find someone to help me?

  • Jeff

    Lost a job got approved for unemployment back in 9/16 got a job right away and was off unemployment. then had to leave there lease was up took the job for less hours less money 12/16 interview is coming up for reclaim where my new job isnt qualified but the old one is there. Will I get it?

    • Depends on if NJ will recognize your quit of the lower-paying job as for “good cause.” Loss of housing can be considered good cause in some states. You need to demonstrate financial hardship because of loss of housing and low wages

  • jason whitney

    I was approved for partial unemployment back in December. My max weekly rate is 170. For the holidays at my job there was extra opputunties for work so I took it. Now i am back to only 15 hours a week until at least mid March. My question is as long as I dont exceed my rate of 170 at my job i will receive my benefits?

    • When you work part-time in NJ, NJ establishes a Partial Benefit Rate 20% higher than your Weekly Benefit Rate. In your case, your Partial Benefit Rate is $204 ($170+20%). You can actually earn up to $204 before NJ stops paying you, per NJ handbook, here:

      You can earn up to 20% of your Weekly Benefit Rate (WBR) and still receive a full unemployment check for that week. For example if your WBR is $200, you can earn up to $40 (20% of $200 is $40) and still receive your full WBR of $200.

  • Tim

    Hi i was terminated from my job 12.7.16 on 12.19.16 i had my interview n they disqualified me for 8 weeks saying I left my work area unattended but i went on break so I put in a appeal i have my hearing 1.23.16 I seen in a previous post if I appeal it will mess me up from getting benefits at all now I’m really worried should I not go through with the appeal.I’m trying to get backpaid please any advice

    • Appeal hearing on 1/23 is Monday – this gives you no time to cancel. One-time occurrence, no previous warning, especially if employer doesn’t suffer harm or could be exposed to harm, shouldn’t warrant escalation to severe misconduct- but only you know your circumstances. Here is how NJ evaluates misconduct:

      At the appeal you can state one of two things: (1) you’ve decided to accept the penalty or (2) try to prove the best you can you don’t deserve this penalty, at all.

      As stated previously, you risk losing your entire claim by appealing an 8-wk dq. Escalation to severe misconduct on appeal happens often enough in NJ that it is usually not wise to appeal an 8-wk dq.

  • Kristen

    I had recieved a letter from ui today stating i was not eligible bc of misconduct.. Does this mean that i cant recieve ui at all or am i able to try again at a later time?

    • NJ rarely outright denies.

      Read your letter CAREFULLY. NJ normally routinely dq’s people for simple misconduct for eight weeks after discharge, after which your benefits begin. The letter should specify the dq period. This is not a denial.

      If, on the other hand, you received a severe misconduct penalty, you need to return to work and experience another qualifying separation. The letter should tell you how long you need to work and how much you need to earn if that is the case.

      NJ discusses misconduct penalties, here:

  • Cynthia

    I have a quick question. I originally filed a claim on 1/10/2016. I only collected 4 weeks from this claim since I accepted a contracting position. The last day of that job was 12/30/2016. I went to file a new claim but it wouldn’t let me but allowed me to reopen the old claim. I received one week 1/10/2017. When I went to claim benefits for the week of 1/9-1/13 on 1/15 the system told me that the claim has expired. After reviewing the website, I see a claim expires after a year. I proceeded to file a new claim. Here’s my question, am I no longer eligible for benefits for the week of 1/9-1/13? I’ve been trying to call but to no avail. I would hate to wait on a long line at the office just for an answer to this question if someone can help. I don’t see that I have any issues with the new claim besides having to wait 3 weeks for any type of payment. Thank you in advance.

  • Morgan

    Recently a company has bought the company I work for for. They are based in NJ but bought our offices in Maine. We are a 24 hour on call industrial cleaning business. Sometimes there is work and sometimes there is not. In the past if there was no work or not enough, we were able to file for partial unemployment through Maine unemployment. We were given a green slip to either fax or we could go on line and file it that way. Since this company is based in NJ we now have to follow NJ law. How will partial unemployment work now? Do we still file to Maine? And how does that work for income taxes?

    • Who told you NJ law now prevails? The domicile of your employer is irrelevant. The business is still being operated in Maine, all wages and FUTA taxes are reported to Maine. You are not subject to NJ taxes. Continue to file unemployment claims and live your life as a Maine employee, resident, and taxpayer.

      • Morgan

        I thank you very much for your quick response. The new owners and office personal were able to give me a green slip aka partial unemployment slip for last week because the sale wasn’t final yet. When they handed it to me I was told this was going to be the last week because they now fall under NJ law. She never gave me anymore information as to what was going to happen when or if I was going to need to file a claim. I wasn’t sure if that was going to be up to me now, to electronically file it. It is all very new. Again thank you for this information.

  • Edu

    Hi I have been collecting unemployment since July 2016. My UI balance has a zero balance now. Can I reopen another claim? Am I still eligible to receive unemployment?

    Kind Regards,


    • You are allowed one NJ claim in any 52-week period. You cannot reapply in NJ until your first benefit year ends in July 2017 – and only if you have worked before then. For now, there are no further benefits available to you. Try to find some work before July.

      Per NJ:

      “You must earn six (6) times the previous claim’s weekly benefit rate and work at least four (4) weeks in covered employment to be eligible for benefits in a successive benefit year.”

  • Loretta

    how many years can you get ui for the 26 week periods? I heard you could collect for 3 years after losing your job due to closure of company and working in same place for over 38 years.

    • Wrong. You apply for a requalifying claim every year if you also work and earn wages during the benefit year. If you haven’t worked after you file for benefits, you are not eligible for another claim when the first benefit year expires no matter how long your previous employment. Further, base periods for a claim only go back eighteen months. Three years has nothing to do with claim eligibility.

  • Rena


    So I’ve been receiving unemployment benefits since 10/12/16. I claimed my weekly benefits this pass Sunday 1/1/2017 and it states benefits exhausted. Now, when i was approved i believe i reopened a claim . I remember receiving a letter in the beginning with the benefit Year but it ended 6/30/2016 however my last day of employment was 10/6/2016. Shouldn’t I have at least 12 more weeks?
    Please help

    • No. $$ amount and number of weeks paid are based on earnings in your base period. Look at your Notice of UI Award. That should give you the exact amount you are entitled to collect under this particular claim. You don’t have enough weeks of earnings in the base period to allow for a longer benefit.

      Further, you didn’t reopen a claim. If your other benefit year ended June 2016, you have a brand new claim beginning in October which only provides 12-13 weeks benefits. You won’t be eligible for another claim until October of this year – and that is only if you have new earnings before then.

  • thomas mc cool

    I don’t know if my comment was sent so I’ll repeat it, I could not file weekly claim as site said problem with showing work one week then no work the next, said call 856-507-2340 which I did 13 times on Wed. I called to the end of work day, always got agents busy, will I lose this weeks benefits?

  • leigh

    My Husband was out on FMLA short term disability for 4 weeks due to illness in Sept, he returned back to work in October and after 3 days he was terminated. The company said his FMLA was denied. I filed unemployment after 10 days of fighting with the company to straighten out the miss understanding (he received short term disability from the company while he was out). He was granted unemployment on Oct 16th pending a Nov 28th phone interview. I filed a claim every week leading up to it. He had the phone interview and a week later we received two different denial letters. I immediately filed an appeal. One letter stated that he abandoned his job for excessive absenteeism, and the other said he was never released by his doctor and therefore was not able to work. I filed the appeal on Dec 7th and received a letter telling me that they received the appeal. I have proof that he was in the hospital under the care of a doctor while he was not at work. That work paid him short term disability during that time and his doctor released him to come back to work! How long does an appeal meeting take to get? We live in PA so contacting a state rep wont really help us. We have 4 kids and are on the verge of losing everything! He was at his company for 13 years! Other people have been fired for bringing drugs to work and they are collecting unemployment and receiving it!

    • NJ of late is hearing appeals within four-six weeks of request – which is a considerable improvement over the three-four months common in that state for years. Hopefully, yours will be heard soon, with a decision forthcoming ten business days thereafter. The denial for “excessive tardiness” should be overturned, as should the Able and Available issues. You should have no problem.

      Good luck.

  • Chrissy

    My employer advised me to apply for partial benefits back in November because of the type of business it is my hours would significantly reduce over the winter months. I applied and was approved without an interview within a week and have been making partial claims since with no problem. This last week due to the weather and holidays I was called off for every shift scheduled. So I had no hours to claim, the UI website said I had to reapply. My claim status now says pended and that I need to call them. Of course they aren’t accepting calls as per their recording. What does this mean for my claim? I’m not scheduled over the next month at all and am on a call when needed basis but still legally employed. What happens now?

    • It doesn’t mean anything for your claim, except NJ needs to know why you didn’t report earnings that week. In other words, they want to know if you quit that job or were discharged. Neither are true, but NJ still needs to investigate what appears to be a possible “separation.”

      You need to keep calling. It’s possible after you have explained the circumstances a phone rep can allow payment of benefits without scheduling an interview. Otherwise, if you can’t get through on the phone, visit one of the local NJ offices and see if it can’t be handled there.

  • Michael

    Happy holidays! I am currently working and my hours were reduced from 40 to 30hrs due to the slow holiday season. The reduction in hours started on Dec 5, 2016 and will end 01/13/17. I didn’t know that I could file for partial unemployment until yesterday. My question is: Can I claim partial unemployment from 12/5/16 or it will go back to the week of claim. In the system it is showing claim date: 12/25/16 and I want it to start from 12/05/16.Thanks.

    • No, there are no retro payments. Payments are calculated beginning the date of application. That said, NJ will not pay benefits if your earnings equal your weekly benefit – which is generally 60% of your average weekly wage. Otherwise, NJ will gross up your WBA 20% and then deduct gross earnings from that. See p. 15, here:

      Given NJ’s WBA of 60% of gross weekly wage, it is highly unlikely you will be entitled to a benefit, as your earnings have only been reduced 25%. You need a reduction of more than 40% to qualify for partial benefits.

  • Jessica Schondel

    I was disqualified for UI benefits but I am appealing. I do expect to win the appeal, but can only imagine the hoops that NJ will have me jump through. Typically, how long can an appeal take if there is well documented proof that I did not leave my job as they are claiming.The problem was a misunderstanding between HR and my administrator as to why I was let go. I cleared that up with the person from HR for whom the state interviewed, she wanted a chance to fix the mistake and we had planned for that to occur when I was scheduled for my 2nd interview. The interviewer said that she would call me ONLY if there was a problem with what my employer said and that she would call on 12/19 at an appt time. The HR rep who spoke with her and myself expected the opportunity to speak with the interviewer to give a truthful and accurate statement based on all of the documentation that I had that I didn’t leave my job voluntarily and wasn’t given an option to stay or go.

    So, first step- I submitted my appeal statement online and within it, I stated that I had documentation to substantiate that my statements to the state interviewer were honest.

    What typically happen after the statement for appeal has been submitted? Are you able to give me an example of what to expect? Any help would be much appreciated-Thanks, Jess

    • You will be notified of a hearing date – probably to take place in about four-six weeks or thereabouts. At that time you present evidence to dispute your employer’s objection. With evidence, you should be fine. Interviewers have very little latitude on the initial decision, no matter what you say. Appeal is where it’s fixed. Most people don’t appeal – which is mistake.

  • Rebecca

    I applied for unemployment the day I lost my job. I was officially approved about 3 weeks after. I filed claims for those three weeks but only received one weeks payment deposited into my account about two days after I was approved. Am I supposed to get the other two payments? I tried calling nj unemployment, but can’t get through to ask.

    • Rarely is anyone officially “approved” within three weeks of application. Sounds like NJ paid you one week’s benefits conditionally pending employer response and has now suspended payments so it can do a further investigation. The investigation can easily take another four weeks or longer. NJ should be contacting you for an interview.

      Meanwhile, keep claiming.

      • Rebecca

        I had my interview via phone call this past week. They said they would contact my ex employer and I would hear something soon. This occurred my third week after I filed for unemployment. Online it shows that I was approved and that they paid me three weeks of benefits. I only received one. Are you saying that I’m still going to have another interview? Why does it say it paid 3 weeks worth of unemployment?

        • If you were just interviewed a few days ago, you won’t have another. Your benefits were suspended b/c of the interview which only occurred a few days ago, the contact w/your employer, and pending NJ’s decision regarding same. It can take up to a week or longer for approval and release of funds after these events.

          If there were no issues with your discharge, this is just a normal delay while NJ processes the latest events. What you’re saying so far is nothing out of the ordinary. Suspension of benefits after payment of one week happens ALL THE TIME in NJ.

          If your account says approved and the weeks were paid, expect the $$ to be deposited in your account within two-three days from date paid. Payment never happens overnight.

          However, to set your mind at rest, call NJ to see what’s what.

  • Diana

    My claims examiner interview was supposed to be today 12/19/16 at 10 a.m. It is now 4:15 pm and no call.. I don’t know what to do with the holidays coming up and now going into my 2nd month of not paying rent.. help?

    • They have either decided to make a decision without the interview, or will call you later. NJ is stalling around on paying these days – appears to be a cash flow issue. Any method to delay a decision is used – which means no benefits for at least six weeks after application, possibly longer.

      Email your NJ state representative – tell him you are experiencing financial hardship and are about to become homeless with this unnecessary stalling around.

    • Jessica

      Diana, my interviewer spoke with me on 12/17 and said that she would call me back on 12/19 between 2:30-3:30p if my employer gave a conflicting statement. Well, I didn’t notice until later on Wednesday that she had called me back. She left a message saying that the employer had a conflicting statement and what they said. The interviewer said in that message that she would keep the 12/19 appt with me to get a statement from me. She confirmed on the msg that she would be calling between 230-330. She never called. I had needed to talk to her because my former employer made a mistake and wanted to speak with her again to give her the correct info so I could get benefits. I am screwed financially bc I can’t get ahold of anyone at Unemployment!!!! I called the Director’s office and they gave me a number to call that is out of service. I am so worried that they are going to refuse benefits, that I will have to go through the appeal process and go without $$$ all because the interviewer didn’t call me back like she said she would. They have one job and it may be a busy stressful one but at the very least they should call to reschedule. So frustrating!!!!

      • NJ won’t “deny.” Unless employer is accusing you of severe misconduct, worst case you get an 8-wk dq from benefits from date of discharge.

        NJ misconduct penalties, here:

        Further, no matter what you say – if employer infers misconduct, NJ assesses this penalty. The phone interview won’t help you. Employer statements rule. Which is why interviewer hasn’t returned your call. Nothing you say will matter.

        After the dq period has elapsed, benefits are paid. You need to call NJ at the end of the dq period to unlock future benefits. Keep claiming.

        You can appeal the 8-wk dq, but know that in many cases on appeal NJ has elevated the penalty to severe which truly does mean “deny.” Not recommended you appeal if this is your outcome.

        • Jessica Schondel

          Thank you Daphne! The thing was that my former employer is the one who wants to speak with the interviewer again. She admitted that she made a huge mistake in what she told the interviewer after she reviewed my file and she wanted to set the record straight.

          No misconduct. I was working per diem as an RN but I was providing close to full time hours to my admin. There was a situation at work where I was getting severely bullied by a coworker and asked not to be put in a situation where I had to work directly with this coworker. I was in a supervisory role with this coworker but the coworker was behaving in an aggressive threatening insubordinate manner. The admin could have moved her into another room and provided me with another room assistant but wouldn’t and the admin, even though she admitted that other ppl had been complaining about this woman’s conduct (made another nurse cry), wouldn’t mediate, either. The admin took a she said she said approach. This caused me to get very sick.

          As a courtesy, I told the admin that I needed to take a medical leave of about 2-3 weeks tops. I asked to be provided with HR’s contact info as none of us at this facility had it or even were sure there was an HR dept.

          The admin didn’t provide me with the number and eventually she sent me an e-mail with false statements, just said that she couldn’t approve an “extended leave” and was taking me out of the system.

          From there I had gotten HR’s info and good communication through that person. Unfortunately, that person thought that I had asked for an extended leave. She told the interviewer that I was given the option to not be taken out of the system and not take an extended leave. That wasn’t the situation. I wasn’t given any options and after I pointed it out to the HR person, after my interview, she agreed that she was wrong and she wanted to fix the situation so that I could get benefits from unemployement.

          Can I go down to unemployment in Trenton? Someone told me that isn’t an option any longer and that you can’t go speak to someone in person. I don’t think that he is correct with that info. I think that one can just no longer go through re-employment center for orientation and other issues but that you can speak to a person about your claim.

          The concern is not misconduct but that I was accused of refusing work and that may be a reason for denial. What do you think?

          • You will get NOWHERE talking to anyone at any NJ office. Don’t waste your time. Your best shot is the interviewer and that, at best, almost never works in your favor if employer says otherwise. All questionable issues are adjudicated at appeal. If you are denied for work refusal, which sounds possible, you will need to appeal. Sorry, the news isn’t better, but at this stage of the process you have virtually no control and no voice. Just the way the system works.

            A better approach would be to email your NJstate representative today, tell them NJ won’t call you back, and you MUST defend yourself against employer false allegations – that at least might get you a callback. Find your NJ rep, here:


  • Lauren

    I’ve worked at a restaurant for six years in a shore town where we work full time in the summer and hours are reduced in the winter and we collect partial unemployment. When I claimed my benefits online for the first time this winter it said payment could not be made so I called the reemployment call center. The lady on the phone said that they have a new thing where everyone who is collecting partial unemployment and is still working has to have a phone interview and benefits will be put on hold until a determination is made. I told her that I’ve done this for six years and have never had a problem. She reassured me that I wasn’t being singled out and they were doing this with everyone. Is this true? In the meantime bills are piling up. Anything I can do to speed up this process or get this straightened out?

    • Interviews are standard for NJ and have been for years, although in your particular situation possibly not. If this is a “new” procedure for partially employed people, NJ is clearly having a cash flow problem and looking for a way to delay payment of benefits.

      That said, normally, NJ interviews are not scheduled for at least five weeks after application – which means you don’t see any money for six-seven weeks. You are paid retro, of course. But the wait is a financial hardship.

      If your interview has not been scheduled yet or is too far way, call NJ and ask for an expedited interview – or, better yet, email your state representative telling him you can’t wait six-eight weeks before you receive any benefits. NJ reps have been successful getting these interviews moved up. Find your rep, here:

  • Thomas Donohue

    I was scheduled for a NJ unemployment phone interview today Friday Dec. 9th at 2:40pm.. The call never came. The website said there maybe a delay of up to 2 hrs.. it’s now 5:50pm. It doesn’t say what to do if no call comes. Do I call on Monday?

  • Taniqua S.

    Do you need to wait for a phone interview if you were laid off for lack of work by employer? Also how long would it take to recieve your benefits once approve. Thanks

    • NJ won’t schedule an interview unless employer says this was not a layoff. Earliest – very earliest you can expect benefits in that case in NJ would be three weeks after application. If an interview is necessary, you won’t be seeing any money until six-seven weeks after application – but you will be paid retro. Keep claiming.

  • Andres

    my husband filed on 9/11/2016 – discharged.
    received letter for unempl0oyment determination – simple misconduct form 9/11 to 11/5 disqualified. he has been claiming his benefits online for two weeks straight and no money in his debit card.
    if he got disqualified for :simple misconduct in NJ then he can still claim, but why has there been no money sent out? Also, claim online at shows “claim Pended” still after almost 3 months. We are concerned – he is looking for work but nothing so far. Why is there a delay in payment? If he was denied why would he still be able to claim weeks online? if you could get back to me asap. Thanks

    • After a dq period, even though he has been claiming, it is necessary to call NJ to “reopen” the claim – which should have been done on 11/08 (the beginning of your first week of eligibility). Your husband’s dq period ended 11/05, which means he should be paid for weeks ending 11/12 and 11/19.

      However, you still need to call. Once he does that, NJ should release the funds for weeks ending 11/12 and 11/19.

      In NJ, monies normally reach your bank account or debit card two days after claiming. Hereafter, if he claims on Sunday, the money should be in your account on Tuesday.

  • Maggie

    Yes! I did file last year around Nov20. Oh okay now I understand. Thank you I appreciated so much!!

  • Maggie

    I have a seasonal job I started in April and my last day was Oct.21
    Why do I have to wait till Nov.19 to claim unemployment?

    • Maggie

      That is What the office told me when I called because I’m having trouble reclaiming or even looking at my account and they said because I have to wait after November 19 to reclaim or do anything. I’m still don’t understand why I need my money i back up on bills

      • Did you file for benefits last year at this time? Sounds like you had an earlier claim which you have exhausted but which will not expire until November 19th. You are not allowed another claim until the benefit year for the previous claim has expired.

  • Dre

    So i was discharged on September 7, 2016 and had my nonmonetary phone interview on October 13th reason for discharge i was told was because i was late. i told the interviewer that i was discharged wrongfully due to the fact that company policy must issue a warning before discharging an employee. i was never issued anything. i simply came in and was fired 4 hours into working that day by HR. The phone interviewer then told me i would have a determination within 48 hrs(2 business days) which was on a monday because the interview was on a thursday. i patiently waited the 10 business days (October 27, 2016) after the interview and still never received anything in the mail. On the 11th day(October 28th) i went in to see a onestop rep and was told all she could do was email the interviewer for a answer. I waited until the 31st of October and went back to see the onestop rep and was told by her and her manager that NJ interviewers are “Back-Logged”. i politely asked whatsa back-log she told me that they have to many claims to do. i told them that i patiently waited and read the NJ unemployment rules that are in the hand guide and never seen anything about a back log. i am now piled up to my neck in bills and i have 2 kids i have to look after until i find work. i feel that they are leaving me in the dark about my determination. its now November 1st and still no answer ..l went to the onestop center today and the rep lady had no one before me being that i was the only person there with a number and she looked at me and high tailed it out of there and went on lunch i guess..i spoke to a manger he said give another day or two..but like i said its becoming 3 weeks still no answer of determination ..what should i do or who should i speak to about this??

    • Eight weeks after discharge is way too long for a determination – even for NJ. This should have been decided two weeks ago. Email your NJ state representative immediately. He will contact you quickly, and you will get a decision. Find your legislator, here:

      That said, your issue is the discharge for tardiness without warning which is putting NJ into a quandry.

      NJ on misconduct penalties, here:

      Technically, a one-time occurrence w/o warning doesn’t even rise to simple misconduct 8-wk dq. from ‘week’ of discharge – which is the worst penalty NJ could issue in your situation and which NJ routinely imposes whenever there is the remotest question of misconduct.

      If NJ imposes that disqualification, you are entitled to benefits beginning with week ending October 29th, the ninth week after discharge, which benefits you should have claimed on Sunday, October 30th, and which should have been in your account today, November 1st.

      If NJ does impose the 8-wk dq., benefits are NOT paid retro. The best you can expect is to receive one week’s benefits this week, and continued weekly benefits going forward. You can appeal this, of course. A hearing will take another month. There is a chance you could get the 8 weeks retro on appeal.

      I rarely recommend appealing an 8-wk dq. b/c NJ is known, on appeal, to elevate simple MCs into severe – which means no benefits at all. But, given your ‘misconduct’, even this penalty is not warranted. Know that if you appeal, you will continue to receive benefits going forward while the appeal is pending.

      It is past the time for NJ to start paying you as any possible penalty period expired a week ago. Email your State Rep today – and let us know the outcome. Thx.

      • Dre

        First and foremost i just want to thank you on the information and advice you provided for me.I emailed my Sate rep and they responded within the hour. at the same time i was down at the paterson one stop and they told me a determination was mailed out on October 31 and should be receving it any day now, and that is all the info they are allowed to tell me at this time. i was also informed by my state rep that my determination concluded that i was DQ’d for 8 weeks of benefits, and that i should start receiving payment the week ending NOV 5 which means if i claim Sunday i get paid by Tuesday. Though i am greatful to at least know the outcome of my case, i still know and can prove i was wrongfully discharged due to a fact that i would have had to gotten an verbal and then a signed written warning which none of the above steps were taken before my termination to the company. I see your advice wouldn’t recommend appealing this decision as NJ probably would blow it out of proportion and i would end up with nothing. i feel the burden would be on the employer to prove to the state a written warning was issued in which they cant. but i also don’t want to lose and end up at ground zero. but again i just want to say thank you again you helped a lot and put things in a clear prospective even the one-stop lady was surprised i knew so much lol

        • Happy to help, and pleased to hear it worked out. The state rep approach works every time. The dq begins the week of discharge which counts as one week no matter if you lost your job on Friday, plus seven additional weeks, so Nov. 5 is the correct date. I miscounted the weeks.

          Thanks for the update – much appreciated. It is helpful for everyone to hear the end of the story.

  • Peter

    Please help. I was let go from my job on Oct 7 after working there for over a year and 4 months. I was discharged because it “was not working out”. After my co worker had quit and I had been in the process of looking for a new job in the field aand I believe they found out, and refused to be forced to stay and threatened with my job that I was required to work mandatory overtime, and were talking hours on end, without compensation as I was salary. LíAfter numerous failed attempts of filing an online application I called the call center and did it via phone. I was told my application was approved, that my debit card was in the mail and I should receive it Monday or Tuesday, I would be receiving 641 weekly for a total of 16,666. Went on Sunday morning as instructed to claim and it shows I will be receiving the above stated, however no money was transfered and It stated benefits we denied this week. Why is this? I am on the verge of loosing everything please respond ASAP!!! Thank you! 7

    • On what date did you actually submit the application?
      When were you told application had been approved?

      It is not possible for the phone rep taking your application to approve the claim. The best she can do is affirm that you have wages in their database to support a claim of $x and weekly benefit of $641 and send out a debit card.

      This is NOT an approval.

      Approvals in NJ come through earliest about three weeks after application IF there is a clean layoff and both you and employer tell the same story.

      Since you were discharged, NJ must conduct an investigation. This process can take five weeks or longer. NJ has sent a query to your former employer. Chances are your employer has not yet responded.

      Also, in the event of a discharge, NJ will want to interview you for “nonmonetary” reasons. The interview is separate and apart from your original phone application. NJ normally schedules these interviews to take place four-five weeks after application.

      Typically in NJ, in the case of a discharge, length of time between application and approval is about six-seven weeks. Based on what you have posted thus far, it would appear NJ is still processing your application and is weeks away from a final determination.

  • Mat

    I was collecting unemployment from a job I lost in December 2015. I was collecting up until about April or May of this year but started a new job in May. Was let go for reasons I don’t know on the first of October. I still have a balance of the last claim. Do I just keep claiming on Sundays? I’m so puzzled since I still have a balance that I haven’t used up…

    • You REOPEN your existing claim. You can do this online or by calling NJ. You are not eligible for a new claim until your current benefit year expires in December regardless if you exhaust your benefits before that time.

      If you are still unemployed in December, you can apply for a new claim. Because you’ve worked during your current benefit year, you should have no issues qualifying.

  • Simone

    I had my phone interview on September 9 2016 how long does it take to receive my benefits?

    • You will receive benefits when NJ approves the claim. Since you had an interview, clearly NJ had questions. NJ can take up to two weeks or longer after the interview to issue its verdict. NJ says ten business days, but will often take longer. If you don’t hear anything this week, call them next Monday.

  • Wendy

    I made my claim by telephone on Monday September 5 for the week before ( August 28 to September 2 only one week off) and i don’t receive yet the debit card ,what else I have to do? . .From New Jersey

    • When did you file your application for benefits? You are allowed to claim weekly benefits, but may not receive the debit card until the claim is actually approved. Keep claiming. In NJ, depending on the circumstances of your job loss, it may be as long as six-eight weeks before you receive benefits. If yours was a simple layoff, unless employer is causing issues, often you can be paid three weeks after application.

  • Tiffany

    Hello I received three letters.
    1. I had a phone interview the 15th
    2. My earning for my job
    3. I could collect claim my benefits on the 9th and it added a number and then said after every sunday you can log into said website to claim faster…

    I do not understand the 3rd letter.. Could someone explain and also give me the number it has on that 3rd letter and website as to where to claim? I missed place the third letter …

  • Lauren

    I am having a terrible time at work, and it is causing a mental strain on me. I have been thinking about quitting, but I can’t afford to, and I can’t look for another job because I have used up all my time looking for jobs already, so I am kind of stuck in a bad job. Can I quit and apply for unemployment while I try to find something better? Or do I have to be laid off? I really can’t stay with this job, but for financial reasons I have to.

    • Know that, on average, if you quit, earliest you might get a benefit in NJ will be eight weeks after you file for benefits. NJ won’t hold an interview for at least five weeks after the quit, after which it’s another week or ten days to a decision. So, there is no money anytime soon if you quit. If you are discharged, add another week to that timeframe.

      That said, your only chance of a good cause quit is to get a medical excuse from your doctor on stress. Then you need to address the grievance with your employer, in writing, citing the exact issues and ask them to correct the problem.

      If you’re lucky, they’ll fire you. You want them to fire you. It’s much easier to get benefits with a discharge/firing than a quit. Further, NJ rarely denies on a discharge unless you’re guilty of something very serious. Instead, if employer cites misconduct – which you can expect they will do – most employers will accuse you of something – NJ will impose an 8-wk disqualification from benefits, after which you can collect. Again, NJ rarely denies on an employer misconduct charge.

      If employer doesn’t correct the issue or fire you, you quit citing medical reasons – and hope that NJ grants the claim. It probably won’t, and you will need to appeal. The appeal will take another four-six weeks after the initial denial to a hearing and decision. You and your doctor also need to be able to assure NJ you are Able and Available to search for an accept other work should you get the denial overturned.

      Work on getting a discharge. It’s the surest way to benefits eventually without an appeal. No matter what you do, it will be a long time until NJ can pay you.

  • Rachel

    I’m very confused about when to file for the first time. For example, if my last day is June 30, when should I submit my first claim?

    Also, I need to submit a claim every week?

    Any help is appreciated.

    • Mija


      I am trying to figure that out as well. Last week on July 11th, I lost my job. I filed immediately for unemployment. This passed sunday I claimed my weekly benefits but I just received an email saying that I will claim my first weekly benefits on July 27. This entire process is so confusing.

      • @Mija – On July 27th, you should be claiming for weeks ending 7/16 and 7/23. Whether or not NJ will pay you immediately depends on the circumstances of your separation. Usually, best case, most claimants do not see benefits until at least three weeks after application.

    • @Rachel – Assuming you have a good work history going back for a year, file immediately. Filing before July 3rd, NJ will use earnings Jan-Dec. 2015 to calculate your WBA. NJ pays 60% of average gross weekly wage for up to 26 weeks. Set up direct deposit and claim online weekly whether or not approved, Once you are approved, if you claim on Sunday, you should see money in your account on Tuesday. NJ will send you instructions before you file your first claim.

      Know that NJ can take up to 6-8 weeks before it pays benefits, depending on the circumstances of your separation. If NJ needs to investigate (were you fired for misconduct? what were the circumstances of your quit?), it will set up an interview four-five weeks after you have filed for benefits, with a decision forthcoming shortly thereafter.

  • A.

    Call the Dept of Labor and explain your issue. They will help you by notifying the Unemployment office to give you a call back. It worked for me. I believe I got a call back in a couple of hours.

  • Bree

    I had a hearing last weds when will I get my letter of determination in the mail

    • Decision letters are normally sent ten business days (two weeks) after the interview, sometimes earlier. You may need to call and ask rep to send examiner an email if no decision is forthcoming. Normally, the longer it takes for a decision, the less likely in your favor. Good luck.

  • Rachel Antonini

    Be trying for a week to get through. Got a call back finally and the women ask for my SS number and I didn’t get it to her fast enough. She hung up. I’m been served with eviction papers can some one please help 6096858759

  • Please Help,

    I tried to claim my hours today like I have done every week and today it is telling me that I need to speak to a agent. I call and the system says please call back due to the high call volume. If I don’t get this processed I will be out on the street with no food or shelter. Someone please help me I can be reached at 828-303-4433

  • Christopher

    Tried to apply 4 times on the website. Just before I could get to end of the application the website kept going down. I then called about 8 times at 8:30am on the dot and the first 4 times I got disconnected just as I was about to speak to someone after being on hold for an average of 30 minutes each time. I tried one last time online and the application seemed to go through but It has been a week since I applied and have not received any correspondence. I keep trying to check my claim status at the “claim inquiry” page of the site at but after logging in it keeps asking me to provide a NJ resident I.D. or license number which I do not have. Its just a continuous going around in circles. It doesn’t state anywhere that the employment centers offer support for applying or inquiring about their claim. So, what is one to do?

  • Lorraine

    How long when you file a claim does it show up on the website?

  • absurd

    Been calling all morning. Can’t use the online form as I’m out of state. No one answers. This is absurd. What a sham. What a shame.

  • Star

    If anyone reading this can’t get through to unemployment, just call your local unemployment office directly. They don’t want people to know you can do that. But you can. And there’s no wait.

  • Been calling all week for two hours a clip trying to open a claim. No one is picking up. Any ideas to get through? Is there someplace I can show up in person?

  • I called my claim in several weeks ago, I had my phone interview and now a week later, nothing. I called the phone number and I did get a call back, and It rang once and dead air. then I called again, no call back. I just want to know if I was approved and when can I get a payment? I have bills and are about to be homeless waiting. Seems no person works for you just computers! Why is it so hard to get ahold of a person to ask a few simple questions? I cant get into my account online so im forced to do this by computer.

  • call center not accepting calls due to Volume (presumably). Average time out of work = 9 months. benefits = 6 months. totally obvious we’re being stonewalled. grow up and stop this behavior. I’ve been laid off of IBM after 14 years.

  • I exhausted my first claim in August of 2014 for the time I worked from 5/6/2013-11/19/2013 when I was laid off then called back to work 12/16/2013-1/17/2014 then was laid off again. I got called back to work 3/11/2014 thru 7/3/2014 when I was laid off again but have not found work since. Have I worked enough hours or made enough money to re-file again 11/22/2014

    • Four months work should be sufficient for a claim in NJ. NJ will use earnings to the date you lost your job to qualify you. Not sure why you want to wait until 11/22/2014 – unless you have an unexpired claim. Then, of course, you must wait. NJ required 20 weeks work or about $7,000 in earnings to qualify for benefits in 2014.

  • I have tried many times since I received and notice about a phone interview – the notice does not give me a day, date or time or a reason for this interview.

    I recently had a phone interview and was told, they did not understand why I had to have an interview since I was only receiving partial unemployment. Since I cannot get through on your phone service I am hoping this is the correct way to get an answer.

    My home phone 732-892-8801 – If not available, please leave a message as how I may contact a real person.

    Sandra Marturano

  • i have been layed off and my bills are piling up. i filed for unemployment online and it prompted me to call and speak to an agent. I’ve been calling for days and have been put on hold for hours and still nothing. i really need to get my claim confirmed asap or i might just be homeless soon if i cannot afford to pay my rent. someone please help!!

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