Tennessee Unemployment – Know Your Rights

  Last Verified: January 2017  
ATTENTION CLAIMANTS 

TN has had a long-standing problem with lengthy delays in processing claims, with many claimants experiencing a 2 to 4 month delay before payment of benefits. In addition, TN does not answer its customer service line and often does not respond to call tickets submitted online.   Both issues are chronic and have existed for many years, well before the current “computer upgrade.”

TN is, however, very responsive when it hears from an elected representative.

If you have been waiting more than 3 to 4 weeks for a response/approval and/or benefits, we STRONGLY RECOMMEND you send an EMAIL to your elected state representative, describing your issue. The elected representative will respond quickly (see replies below) and TN will contact you.

Find your elected representative here: http://www.capitol.tn.gov/legislators/

Remember, your elected officials work for YOU. The unemployment insurance benefit program exists to provide financial assistance until you can find work.

BE PROACTIVE – do not allow TN’s inability to process claims in a timely manner impact your ability to pay your mortgage/rent, car payment and other bills. Contact your state legislator. You will get a response.

The Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development (TDLWD) came under fire in 2014 because of a backlog of unemployment benefit claims. In October 2016, there were 10,000 claims unprocessed, according to a spokesperson for the department.

The Commissioner for TDLWD, Burns Phillips, blamed the backup on the state’s new “One Touch” software system, intended to make things easier for citizens to receive service. They expected a “learning curve” for people “unfamiliar with computers,” but didn’t expect one so large.

As of November, there were 6,000 claims still unprocessed. Phillips expected the backlog to be eliminated by Christmas. However, new reporting says the TDLWD won’t see an end to the late claims until January.

The state legislature is concerned, thanks to complaints lodged by angry Tennesseans. If the situation doesn’t improve, the legislature may convene a special committee to get answers from the department.

The mandate from the US Department of Labor requires approved claims to be paid within 21 days. The TDLWD is currently falling far short of this requirement.

Claimants looking for answers will find it difficult to contact a live person. Many report they are unable to speak to anyone about their claim via the regular telephone service.

There are possible answers to at least getting an update on the status of your claim:

Contact your state representative. Claimants are getting results after contacting someone in the legislature. Check this list to see whom you should contact. We recommend using both Email and telephone contacts. Provide as much information about your claim as possible.

You may be able to reach some employees via Email using their name and the @tn.gov domain. For example, if Joe Jones is listed as an employee, type in Joe.Jones@tn.gov. They may forward your Email to the appropriate department.

The state has posted its side of the story to the TDLWD web site. They offer an explanation of the delays as well as contact information.

Currently, the TDLWD is having a public relations problem, and so they be more available to contact than you would expect; though, surely they are spending all their time trying to eliminate the backlog. When you know problems exist, knowing how to properly navigate the system is important. This document will help you avoid mistakes that may further slow the process of filing for unemployment benefits in Tennessee.

Eligibility for Unemployment Benefits in TN

Generally, to be eligible for benefits, you must:TN state seal - get unemployment benefits

  • Be fully or partially unemployed through no fault of your own
  • You must be able and available to accept any reasonable job offer
  • You must have earned enough wages over a 12-month period

To remain eligible if your claim is approved, you must maintain this status and you must make a consistent effort to find work.

Tennessee now requires workers who experience a temporary layoff or were seasonal employees (e.g. someone who customarily works 120 days or less for one employer) to file for unemployment benefits. Workers that fall into this category are exempt from the work search requirement since the Department expects them to return to work (barring any additional separation issues).

Eligibility Requirements Explained

Unemployed Through No Fault of Your Own

If your actions caused your separation from work, the TDLWD will deny your benefits. If you quit voluntarily, your decision caused the separation. If you committed some act of misconduct that caused your dismissal, your action caused the separation.

There may be circumstances under which you decided to quit; however, the Department may find the employer actually caused the separation. You may have been discharged for violating an employer policy; however, the TDLWD will not consider your action “misconduct.”

Able and Available to Work

If have to be physically and mentally able to work. You must also be available to work. Being temporarily incarcerated or living outside the US may make you ineligible for unemployment benefits.

If you become ill or disabled after your claim is approved, you may still be eligible for benefits. You must receive a medical waiver, usually consisting of documentation from a medical professional of your condition. If you are already receiving worker’s compensation from the state, you will be ineligible for benefits.

You must be available to accept any reasonable job offer. A “reasonable job offer” is one significantly similar in salary and duties to your previous work. However, the longer you are out of work, the state will be more insistent that you accept jobs that pay less than you made previously.

Monetary Eligibility and the Base Period

The base period is the 12-month period used to calculate whether you will be eligible for benefits. The state observes your wages over the first four of the last five months. The period is divided into 3-month sections (“quarters”).

unemployment base period

This chart shows the base period for a monetary determination

You must have earned a minimum of $780.01 in each of two quarters of the base period to be eligible. Generally, if you worked consistently over one year prior to your filing a claim, you will have sufficient wages for this requirement.

Maximum Benefits and Weekly Benefit Amount

In Tennessee, the minimum weekly benefit amount (WBA) is $30 and the maximum is $275 per week. Tennessee pays benefits for a maximum 26 weeks during the benefit year. You can compare the benefits Tennessee pays to other states at this site.

The maximum amount of benefits you may be eligible to receive in your benefit year is the lesser of 26 times your WBA or one-fourth of your base period wages.  To be eligible for benefits, you must have base period wages outside the highest quarter of your base period of at least six times your WBA or $900.  Your total amount of benefits, if not a multiple of $1, will be computed to the next lower multiple of $1.

Part-time Work and Unemployment Benefits

You may work part-time while receiving unemployment benefits. You may also file a claim for reduced wages if your former employer significantly reduced your pay rate (and you are otherwise eligible).

The state will deduct from your WBA if you earned a certain amount of wages during the week for which you are filing a claim. You may earn the greater amount of $50 or 25% of your WBA without seeing a deduction. If you receive the max WBA, you may earn just over $68 before the state deducts from your payment.

The state may reduce benefits due to other types of income like severance pay or taxable investment income.

How to Apply for Unemployment Benefits in TN

You may file online, via telephone or in person at an American Job Center in Tennessee. To file online, visit Jobs4TN.gov. This is also the site that allows you to register for a job search.

The link under “unemployment benefits” will take you to the application form. There, you will need to input your information. You’ll need:TDLWD - get unemployment benefits

  • Social security number
  • Driver’s license number
  • Address
  • Telephone number
  • Separating employer’s correct and current name, address, and telephone number
  • Last day worked
  • Reason for separation
  • Your work history for the past 18 months

If you are a military or federal employee, you will need the appropriate separation forms.

You may be instructed to contact the Job Center during the application process.

Weekly Certifications and Maintaining Eligibility

The TDLWD requires workers to maintain eligibility after they approve benefits. Workers must file a weekly claim for benefits, sometimes called “filing a weekly claim.”

Log into the account you created when you filed your initial claim for benefits, or call the TIPS system. The weekly certification process is available only Sunday – 8:00 A.M. until 12:00 midnight Monday through Friday – 7:00 A.M. until 12:00 midnight and AVAILABLE ALL HOLIDAYS that are Sunday through Friday.

  • Tennessee 1-800-689-9799
  • Out-of-State Claimant TIPS 1-800-262-8094

The system will ask a series of questions to determine whether you are eligible to receive benefits that week. These questions inquire whether:

  • You received any income that week
  • You worked and earned wages that week
  • You were able and available to work
  • You were looking for work
  • You refused any work

If you answer the questions to the satisfaction of the system, they will process your claim. Otherwise, you may be instructed to contact the Jobs Center or your benefits may be denied for that week.

Work Search Requirement

Tennessee requires eligible recipients to make a regular job search. You must document the job contacts you make. Sign up to the Jobs4TN web site. If you log-in and apply for jobs regularly, you will likely satisfy the job search requirement.

Weekly Payments

You will receive payment by Direct Deposit or Way2Go Card® Debit MasterCard. Debit cards are mailed within 7-10 business days from the date your claim is filed and are valid for 3 years. You can activate the card and check balances via the mobile apps or online. Further information on the card is available at the TDLWD site.

Reasons for Denial of Benefits

Generally, the TDLWD will deny benefits if your actions or decisions caused your separation from work. If you are physically or mentally unable to work, the state will deny benefits. There may be other circumstances that will cause a denial of benefits.

  • Fraud or an attempt to defraud the TDLWD (failure to disclose important information or lying about your situation)
  • Receiving benefits from another state while receiving benefits from Tennessee
  • Failure to conduct the work searches as required by the TDLWD
  • Receiving termination pay (wages in lieu of notice that you will be discharged)
  • Participation in a labor dispute other than a lockout

You may be able to reopen your claim for benefits once conditions like these no longer apply to you (e.g. you stop receiving benefits from another state; the strike ends). You must call the TDLWD to reopen a claim.

Quit and Still Eligible for Benefits

Your employer may have done something or failed to do something that caused you to quit work. They may have withheld pay for an unreasonable amount of time or moved offices, which made getting to work unreasonable burden on you. The state may consider these matters a “constructive discharge.” You may be eligible for benefits even though you quit your job. You will have to show you made an effort to resolve the problem before quitting.

Quit for Medical Reasons

If you get sick or injured (for reasons unrelated to your job), you may still qualify for benefits even though you made the decision to terminate your employment. However, your circumstance must meet the following conditions:

  • You have proof of your condition from a medical professional
  • You notified your employer as soon as reasonably able
  • You went back to work as soon as medically able to perform your regular duties

If your doctor says you can return to your regular duties but you don’t, you’ve quit your job and you will be disqualified from receiving benefits.

Fired and Still Eligible for Benefits

Your employer may have fired you for a minor argument or a one-time violation of policy. While the employer had the right to dismiss you, your behavior may not raise to the level of “misconduct connected to your work” in these situations.

Unusual situations like these don’t occur frequently, though they are covered in the rules for making a determination. Employers regularly dispute these kinds of claims, and workers may not offer sufficient proof when they file their initial claim to back them up. So then, these matters are often dealt with through the appeals process.

What Happens When a Claim is Denied: The Appeals Process

You may appeal any determination made by the claims examiner. You can dispute the original monetary determination or whether you were eligible to receive benefits when denied.

  • File your appeal by mail, fax or online.
  • The appeal must be in writing. There is a form available, but it is not necessary to use it
  • Include your name, address, social security number (on all documents) and the decision you are appealing

 

File your appeal online at jobs4tn.gov. You can check the status of your appeal at the site.

You have 15 calendar days from the date the TDLWD mailed the decision to file your appeal. If you file late, the Appeals Bureau will not have jurisdiction over your appeal and the original determination will stand.

If you are denied benefits, please visit our section on appealing benefits decision in Tennessee.

For further information regarding filing for unemployment benefits in Tennessee:

Visit the TDLWD’s web site

Read the Tennessee laws that govern unemployment benefits

Find out how to file an appeal

Read the unemployment benefits guide for questions not answered here

Follow the news in Tennessee for further updates on the ongoing backlog

http://www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/Appeals/appeals.shtml

Claimant Services

http://www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/Claimants/appintro.shtml

 Frequently Asked Questions

http://www.tn.gov/labor-wfd/Claimants/appfaq.html

229 comments

  • Jennifer Jewell

    Good Morning. I have a great TN Dept. of Labor story.
    I accepted a new job in April 2016. After a few months I discovered my employer was committing fraud on State & Federal funded TDOT projects. My employer requested that I falsify documents, I refused. I immediately started looking for another job. As I was looking for another job I discovered more fraud committed by my employer. I attempted to contact the DOL via phone, email and ticket request to ask what my options where and if I could quit for good cause. No reply. The final straw was finding out more stuff about the employer including stealing from a local government and insurance fraud. I felt I had to quit immediately to prevent me being involved. I have reported the employer and they are under investigation by the Federal Highway Admin and TDOT. Also, Once I told them I would not participate, she changed me from salary to hourly and reduced my hours.

    After filing for unemployment and not receiving a response in any way, I contacted the Governors office via email. I did receive a call from DOL the next day. They denied my claim, stating that I had other “options” beside quitting. While having a conversation with the DOL the lady told me I should have contacted HR. Ummm, this is an owner operated small company with 15 employees, the crook is HR!

    Needless to say, claim is now in appeals. The State of Tennessee needs to fire the commissioner. And, take a closer look at policy and procedures.

    My question is: How and what can we do to hold the State accountable?

    • markm

      Law requires that you make substantial effort to remedy situation before quitting. Going to HR is one of the steps you can take that would satisfy effort. You’ll also have to show at appeal that what you allege was substantially likely. Will have to show that a reasonable person in your position would 1) believe themselves to be in legal jeopardy by the employer’s actions 2) take the steps you did to remedy situation before quitting. If the employer is person in charge of HR, you can show that at hearing. There was harassment (not an unemployment case) case where TN SC said that if person who makes decisions about harassment case (or as in that case, is party who is alleged to be harasser), you don’t have to go to them to attempt to remedy situation. What else did you do to deal with fraud issue? How much evidence to you have to show in hearing that fraud occurred, or that reasonable person would believe themselves to be in jeopardy? Did you contact outside authorities? If so, can you link going to outside authority to acts by employer against you? These are the kinds of things you will need to show in appeals. It will help to show employer is in fact under investigation, of course more helpful if investigative body have actually made a decision against them.

      td;dr version: Can you show that despite your best efforts at work, you had exhausted all reasonable remedies and continuing to work there would violate notions of fairness.

      As to holding the state accountable, contact your local state house and senate reps. Legislature sets laws that govern unemployment insurance. Commissioner sets rules and regs.

  • Cortney Washington

    Ms Daphne I emailed my State Representative without any answer or reply back also tried to email my State Senator and got a massage stating delivery to the following recipient failed permanently: Technical details of permanent failure:
    Google tried to deliver your message, but it was rejected by the server for the recipient domain. The error that the other server returned was:
    Recipient address rejected:
    User unknown Wat does this mean and how do I contact my representative or know my email was received.

    • Call your state representative on Monday and send another email. Also call your state senator’s office, report your issue, ask for the correct email address, and resend that email. Keep in mind, you may have a new state senator because of a recent election, so if you don’t know who won that election, you may be sending the email to the wrong person.

  • Cara King

    So here’s a new question, who do you contact if you worked for an employer in Tennessee, yet you lived in another state? My husband and I live in Mississippi on the border of Tennessee and he worked for the company for over a year and lost his job. He’s tried contacting our representative here in Mississippi, but he could not help because the issue is in Tennessee. When trying to contact a rep in Tennessee, they won’t help us because we don’t live in Tennessee. My husband contacted the Department of Labor in Atlanta, but they said they do not get involved in issues involving other states; those are to be handled by the state in which they are involved in. We are all a part of the United States of America, but each state is handled as if it were it’s own country and if you live outside of that particular “country” you are screwed. He applied November 1, 2016 and has been waiting for his unemployment benefits ever sense.

    Now, just yesterday he received a letter that stated he was disqualified for benefits because the Unemployment Agency considered his reason for losing his job was “misconduct.” He had provided them with all of the information they requested on November 1st, including the separation letter which stated he was fired for performance. They then contacted his past employer to find out more information and the employer stated that my husband did not get out an order on time and it had happened in the past and he was warned. It stated that he knew what the employer expected of him and since he did not do it, the Unemployment Agency decided this was MISCONDUCT.

    This is total BS. They do not want to pay the claim and searched for a reason not to. The separation letter stated the reason he was fired was PERFORMANCE, not MISCONDUCT, yet they tried to find a reason to not pay him. The reason he was fired was not misconduct. He was a production supervisor, a production supervisor with a very successful history for over 15 years, and he was over 15 men that he had to work with to get the work out. He could not get his men to get the work out because the work coming down the line to his department was full of flaws and had to be repaired by his men and left them with no way to get the work completed and sent down the line. The issues with the department before his were never addressed and he and his men were left to try to repair the work and do their jobs and make miracles happen to try to get the work out in time. These men were working 12 hour days 6-7 days a week to try to make this happen and overworked employees do not perform miracles when they are exhausted and have no work/life balance. When my husband could not produce the miracles, being the supervisor, they fired him. His reason for being fired was not MISCONDUCT, however, the Unemployment Agency decided to label it so in order to deny his claim!

    Now we are left having to appeal this decision and go through a process that we have no idea how long it will take, all while still being left with no unemployment compensation. His employer didn’t say they fired him for misconduct, they said performance; it was the Unemployment Agency that labeled it misconduct so they don’t have to pay him anything!

    He has done EVERYTHING to look for another job, but has had no luck. He has even applied for fast food and retail positions to bring in some sort of income for the time being, but he hasn’t even received a call back from them! We have 3 children that had NO CHRISTMAS and we are going to food banks to help feed our family. I am disabled with Lupus and cannot afford my medication. We are going to lose our house, our cars, our credit and everything we worked so hard for. He went from bringing home $4,000 a month to nothing and we don’t know what we’re going to do.

    What can we do? Can someone please tell me what we can do?

    • Food banks go only so far. You need to see your social services people for help. Contact them immediately on Monday. Bear in mind, the maximum TN benefit is only $275/wk., – the equivalent of $1,192/mo. You are going to be needing financial and other help whether or not you ultimately prevail at appeal. Chances are, for now, your children at least will qualify for CHIP medical. TN may also have help available for utilities, food stamps, cash assistance. You/hubby may be out of luck on the medical end b/c TN did not expand Medicaid so your assets may be a disqualifier.

      Relative to the claim itself, there isn’t anything anyone – not a rep, no one – can do once you have received denial. Know that most states (with the exception of NY) – not just TN – will deny if employer alleges anything which could be construed as misconduct – and let the appeals court sort out the truth. Employment agencies are NOTORIOUS for lying. Your situation is common in all states.

      The appeal hearing is where you prove this was an unintentional occurrence due to work overload, warning notwithstanding. You have a reasonably good chance of winning at appeal if you present the facts clearly.

      Again, contact your city/county social services people immediately. Your household is without income and will be for the foreseeable future.

  • Rose Linsenbigler

    I read these post and replied below the action thus far which i was totally shocked. Any way, Ms. Daphne, I would just like to know where you live and how do we get you in that ofice as their supervisor?

  • Rose Linsenbigler

    I also have had a heck of a time getting info from Tn Unemployment Office. I filed in the beginning of Nov. Recieved my letter of amount I would receive if approved. 6 weeks later I was denied, which made no sense to me. I then filed an appeal and have heard nothing since. I called the Sen for my district and at my surprise she answered her phone, her cell phone I might add! She was kind enough to give me her email add and her number in Nashville, where she will be next week. She apologised to me and said, yes this has been an on going problem that needed much attention. Very nice lady. We will see what happens.

  • I came across this website as well trying to find information to help my son get answers. He is going into his eighth week. I emailed our state representative office and got a phone call the next day.. he stated they were aware of the situation and it was due to the new software system…they will be going in front of the committee soon with an update. He said they are working on the new system still and they are trying to get all the unprocessed claims finished which would be in January sometime. He did say that he would expedite my sons claim. I did thank himfor the quick response which was the very next day and hope this will be taken care of soon. He said if we did not hear anything in a day or two to call him back. Now I am praying he is going to be another claimant that is approved for his money. Will update soon hopefully.

    • UPDATE: my son received an e-mail from the unemployment agency 2 days after my state representative had contacted me… it stated his claim and been approved… 2 days after that he received his money and all his back pay. Daphne thank you so much for the information you are giving everyone…. that’s all it took was getting hold of my state representative and he got the ball rolling. My son was going on his seventh week and still waiting for a response from the agency and my state representative took care of all of it within one week… that is proof that they do work for us.

  • Chandrika Ousley

    I filed my claim 11/27/16, got my Monetary Decision letter by email on 11/28/16. I had to update my address got a letter in the mail about me updating my address. I don’t understand if I can get a quick response when there’s a change on my claim, why haven’t I received a approval or denial letter yet this will make week 5 for me. So I contacted my state legislators this morning and got a response within an hour gave them the information they needed from me and they’re working on it and try their best to get me and answer. I will update progress if any.

  • Greg

    Thank you Daphne for all the wonderful advice you’ve posted here! I worked on a year long temporary assignment for Randstad.

    Once the assignment was finished, I filed for unemployment on 11/13/2016. I kept in contact with Randstad per their requirements, but they never had any assignments available to put me on. I also looked for work on my own, and certified every week per the Dept. of Unemployment’s requirements for benefits.

    After 5 weeks of no response from the Dept. of Unemployment regarding the status of my claim, even after leaving multiple email messages, I came across this site, and followed your advice.

    I emailed both my state Senator and Representative not only at their state email address, but also to their home offices. After 30 minutes I received an email from my Senator’s office requesting additional information, then within 60 minutes I received a call from my Representative’s office. Both stated that they would make sure that this would be taken care of. I was shocked, because it was a Holiday week and thought I wouldn’t hear from anyone until after the new year.

    Within 48 hours the Dept. of Unemployment released and deposited all of the weeks I had certified into my account.

    Daphne you are a lifesaver! Thank you! If I hadn’t followed your advice, I wouldn’t be able to eat!

    I highly recommend following the advice that’s posted here. You will get results. It’s a shame the incompetence we have leading the Dept. of Unemployment here in the state of Tennessee!!!

    Best of luck to everyone!

    • Thanks for the good news. Contacting the reps does work wonders. Y’all in TN need to elect a different government whose mission is to respond to – not obstruct – the needs of its citizens.

    • Greg

      UPDATE: I just got off the phone with my State Representative who contacted me to follow up to make sure I received my unemployment benefits. He informed me that he is the vice chairman of the Consumer and Human Resources committee here in Tennessee. He stated that he had a meeting with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner regarding the issues we’ve all had with our unemployment claims, and lack of communication as well. He said he was informed that the reason for all of the problems has to do with switching to a new system in the beginning of 2016 that was suppose to integrate with the old system which it did not, He said that the Commissioner said that all the issues would be resolved by January 10, 2017, Let’s all keep our fingers crossed!

      • You tell him TN is blowing smoke. TN has had SERIOUS issues with nonprocessing/nonresponsiveness FOR YEARS. I can provide numerous reports from other forums on this issue. TN IS and HAS ALWAYS BEEN NONRESPONSIVE and UNREACHABLE to its claimants. The “new” system is yet another excuse.

        But, Greg, thanks so much for this update. At least awareness has been raised on this issue. We will find out soon enough if these efforts bear fruit.

  • Teresa

    I filed Oct 2,2016 and haven’t heard anything so I e-mailed out state Rep this morning, immediately received a email back stating that someone would be in contact with me soon sure enough they were but I couldn’t get to my phone to answer so they left a message for me to call them back, it went to voicemail I left a message hopefully they call me back if not I’ll be emailing the state Rep again tomorrow.

    • Teresa

      They called me back the very next morning and told me they needed a medical certificate filled out by my doctor. I was taken out of work late Sept due to pregnancy and having lots of pelvic pressure and my employer not wanting me to go into labor at work.. I delivered Nov 8,2016.. I have certified every week and applied for three jobs weekly.. I have sent the medical certificate back in as of 12/16/2016 so I’m still waiting to find out if I’m approved or not…this is getting old.. They drag their feet but if we forget to certify one week we have to start over or if we don’t apply for at least three jobs a week we get denied..

  • carlton

    Thahks to Daphne-contributor I got a Response within 2 hrs.of emailing myChatt.Representative
    Informing me that I would be contacted by someone that would be expediting my Unemployment claim!! And I did in less than 24hrs!!!from Dept.of Labor emailing my Chatt,Tn.Rep.worked!!! Thanks again Daphne-contributor for your Direction.

    • Good news! Thanks for the update.

      • Marcel Smith

        My name is Marcel Smith I’m 7 weeks waiting for unemployment benefits. I have emailed both my state Representative 2 times and have not heard back from them as of yet.

        • Try your state senators, as well. Normally, TN people have found this is the ONLY way to get results. If your reps aren’t responding, that is unusual. Next step would be the US Dept. of Labor in Atlanta. TN is so incompetent in claims processing, the govt. needs to step in, imo.

      • Veronika

        Hi, I’m single mother of two. My company closed end of November. I’m still waiting for my unemployment check. I’ve tried find my representative but it shows me zero result when I put down my address. How do I find my representative? Thank you so much.

      • Hi Daphne,

        It is very apparent after reading a ton of these questions/answers that you care and are trying to help people. I was looking for some answers to a few basic questions when I stumbled upon all of these issues people are having with their claims. My question now is – if our representatives are aware of these longstanding issues, why are they NOT being proactive and addressing the cause rather than placing an individual bandaid when they receive an email? Maybe we need someone elected to office that will dive in and start fixing some of the bureaucratic issues and hold the state accountable for their dysfunction (real or pretended to delay paying claims)…..just a thought.

        • You need to ask your elected representatives why they are tolerating this incompetence. TN places no priority on the unemployment benefit program clearly. It is your GOP elected government which has allowed this irresponsible administration – going back many, many years. The longer benefits are delayed, the fewer $$ are paid out.

          It is ALL about NOT paying benefits.

          TN needs a grassroots effort and a complete upheaval in state governance to change the mindset. Given GOP gerrymandering which allows the minority to dictate to the majority at the state and national levels don’t expect a constructive reception.

  • George

    I have been in limbo for 6 weeks now and I recently sent the Lt. Governor’s office an email on this delay. My email was answered and they said they would try to help. I did get a call from Dept of Labor two days later saying my claim had been escalated and it would be 7 to 10 days before a decision was even made. It has gotten so bad that even the LT Governor cant get much done. However they had the audacity to send me a request for a review of my interaction with them. Meanwhile what should have been pretty easy to get done as some of my family has gotten done, I will be without power, phone, gas to go to job interviews etc. this is how we end up homeless!

    • Let us know how quickly this gets resolved. Your other option, as stated at the top of this page, contact your elected state representative. State reps have been extremely effective and responsive for others.

      • Traci

        Contact your state representative. I sent an email to mine and received a response. I received a call from TN labor and also got confirmation email that my claim was approved. My status has also changed under claim status.

        For those of you who have been waiting please contact the officials we elected. It helped me

    • Kim Thomas

      Hello I filed my unemployment claim om 9/18/16 and I have heard nothing from anybody. I just keep doing my weekly certifications, I’ve called # 877-813-0950 and left message after message and I never get a call back I’ve also left tickets online and still no call no nothing I don’t even know what’s going on with my claim. Does anyone know a different # that I can call or any advice on what I can do to at least find out something.

  • Felicia

    I’ve read every message on this board and I thought I was the only one that was experiencing this exhausting and stressful charade w/ this unemployment agency. I’ve been filing since October 2, 2016 and have yet to receive any communication other than a letter of how much I’ll be receieving and my debit card other than that NOTHING! I’ve tried contacting agency every single day for the past 5weeks via email, chat support and telephone and NO response! Like many of you I’m at wits ends! I’ve taken on the suggestion of contacting my local legislature in which I did today and to much surprise I got a rapid response and was ask to forward my info and soon there after I got another response saying I should hear back from agency within a few days, so I have my fingers crossed. It’s been 9weeks and counting and at this point I can’t wait another day let alone another 4-6weeks! It’s unfortunate that anyone in such predicament have to go to this extreme to even get a updated status on benefits that I feel is rightfully owed. Praying for better and rapid outcome! I will keep you posted on results!

  • Britney

    Do what ppl say & contact ur state legislator!!! I emailed mine on Saturday, received an email from him on Monday, replied back to him, got another email 30 mins later stating that he would forward my information to the correct department. I received a call later that day from a case worker & she told me why my benefits were on hold, which the department never gave me a reason or a letter as to why. She said that my benefits would be released in 48_72 hrs. All it takes is an email guys. Quit complaining & start taking action!!!

    • Kim

      I dont think people are necessarily complaining, people have actually done what you did and have not gotten a response. Besides they aren’t the ones who need to take action, the unemployment office should BE the only people who needs to have fire lit underneath their toes!!!

      • And the only people who can do that are the state reps. The claimants are powerless. Read other posts on this board. Emailing the state rep is the only effective way at this point to get TN to take action. The issues with that state go back many, many years. One can either wait two-four months, or be proactive and contact their state legislator – and keep up the pressure. In virtually all cases cited here, the state rep got immediate action.

  • Terrie

    So I’m having the same problems 5 weeks, nothing.. So I emailed my state Rep and he answered quickly and then one day later I recd a call from unemployment. She told me this big story about a new computer system, short staffing, working 12 hour shifts to catch up on back logged claims and so much more excuses. The lady I spoke with couldn’t even tell me whether or not my employer had even been notified that I had filed a claim. They do not know what they’re doing, no one had answers. So I emailed my state rep again and immediately he emailed me back stating he would be making some phone calls in the morning.. Fingers crossed.. But for sure your state Rep will get the ball rolling for you.. Good luck to all of us..God Bless

    • Thanks for this info. Next time you talk to your rep, ask if the State of TN hired Deloitte to do their “upgrade.” CA had the pleasure of hiring Deloitte to revamp their system several years ago when the Emergency Unemployment Compensation program was still in effect. As a result, CA was in a total mess for almost a year. The problems were horrific. CA had over a million claimants. It was an epic disaster. Same occurred in Massachusetts w/Deloitte. Both states held legislative hearings on the issues. Claimants were losing everything.

      That said, not so sure TN is telling the truth on this. If you check posts upthread going back years, you will see ALL the complaints are the same – no communication, no payment – for two/three/four months.

      TN has had these problems for years and years. This is NOTHING new.

    • Terrie

      UPDATE:
      So my state Rep. Made phone calls the next morning and today I recd an email with my approval letter attached. My claim summary shows they have deducted taxes from my amount and how much will be deposited. It states my pay date is 11/2/16, so I’m praying it’ll be deposited on my card soon.. Emailing the state reps is the way to go. Thank God for them.

  • EMAIL YOUR REPS

    My claim has been waiting approval for almost two months so I emailed 3 of my state representatives and 2 got back to me. Within 4 hours of me emailing one of them the required information, I got a call saying I’ve been approved and I could expect payment within a few days. Payments went through the next day.

    EMAIL YOUR STATE REPS!!!! You will get NOTHING out of trying to get in contact with the unemployment offices directly. Send a short emails letting them know of your situation and they will push you through.

    Good luck!

  • Corina

    I am having the same issue but I have been proactive emailed my state representatives. Hopefully I will have my answers and start receiving my benefits. Email your state representatives. I have been waiting 9 weeks but no more. My children have things they need. And I am not going to let them keep my claim In Progress no longer. This is ridiculous and sad its not their money but they don’t want you to get your money. Have several seats. Im going to complain everyday until I get what’s mine.

    • Good for you! Others have had very good success with their state representatives. Please give us an update when this is resolved. Thanks.

      • Corina

        I got a call from the office after emailing my representatives. They said they didn’t have enough information about my last job. She never said I was approved but she was going to send my update to the department that will approve or denie my claim. So it didn’t sit right with me. So today I emailed my representatives again. I’m not going to deal with them trying to continue to prolong me getting what’s mine. I will be updated as soon as the call is done on Monday or Tuesday. I’m going to continue sending emails until they do their job. My next update will be that Im approved and waiting on my funds to hit my account. Stay tuned!

        • Thanks for the update. Good to hear emailing the state rep got TN to call you.

          Employers often don’t respond to queries. In that case, the states will approve the claim anyway and begin to pay benefits. Most states don’t wait more than four weeks before they pay if the only reason for the delay is a nonresponse from an employer.

          Tennessee CAN and should have approved this claim weeks ago.

          • Corina

            I have updated information just checked my email got my approval letter in the mail. Now I’m just waiting on my benefits to post to my account. Thanks for the motivation to email your representatives to whoever sees this. Email your representatives I’m glad I did!

  • Shunda

    I filed my first employment claim in June and this is October and I still have received response ,letter or payment. This is sad , I’m a single mom with 4 children and bills, I’ve been calling all number and sending emails still no response , ive also been searching for employment , still no one has called and one lady had the nerves to tell me that I was over qualified…wow .can someone please give me any information that will help I would really appreciate .

    • Four-five months with no response is ludicrous. No response from TN after four weeks should have triggered immediate action on your part. If you have read any of the posts on this page, you know that you are NOT alone with your issue.

      As stated – repeatedly upthread – EMAIL your state representative IMMEDIATELY.

      http://www.capitol.tn.gov/legislators/

      You will get immediate help. And, read a few other posts just above yours.

  • Lynn

    This is terrible. My husband and I were laid off on August 3rd, applied for unemployment the very next day, and I have been making all of my job searches (and more), then filing my weeks. Tennessee hasn’t sent a single payment, and it’s putting our family in economic ruin. We’ve defaulted on several bills, and even with WIC, we can’t afford to properly feed our 18-month old twins, let alone ourselves. So thanks, Department of Labor, now I have to see my little boy and girl cry after every small meal they get, and try to ease their hunger with watered-down milk.

    • BE PROACTIVE – immediately – today – EMAIL your state representative. http://www.capitol.tn.gov/legislators/

      You will get immediate help – as was posted recently, here:

      Natasha Davis says:
      September 14, 2016 at 2:27 pm (Edit)

      UPDATE!!!! I was reading you guys comments on yesterday and was having the same issues. It has been 10 weeks with no payment contact or anything. I took the advice of someone that left a reply to contact my state legislators. Well I did, I sent them a nice email just explaining my issue and my concern on yesterday. I was emailed back within 30 minutes, and recieved a phone call from someone in the office that same day. My issues were corrected with my unemployment (which I had no idea I had) and approved and I will be receiving my payments tomorrow. Hope this can help you guys because it helped me!! Good luck!!

      As I have repeatedly stated, TN’s issues on unresponsiveness are NOT new. This has been going for years.

      Those affected should not only contact their state representatives, they should also contact the United States Department of Labor in Atlanta, which is the region supervising TN – excellent contact info on this link:

      https://www.doleta.gov/regions/reg03/Pages/aboutus.cfm

      Tennessee needs to stop this. Eight weeks with no response is completely unacceptable – bordering on misfeasance.

      Start complaining, people!!!

  • Zack Walker

    I’m on week 6 and all payments still say in progress, I have received none…is the state hiring more people to handle these claims?! Because I’d be up for it!

    • Of course, not. They don’t want to pay you. It is their mission to deny/delay benefits whenever possible. They want you to get a job – any job. The longer you are made to wait, the more desperate you will become and the more motivated you will be to find work. This state agency is NOT working for you – especially in a GOP governed state. In low-tax states, you pretty much get what you pay for in govt services – and that is as little as possible.

  • ANW

    Wow, cannot believe how many complaints have been left on this link.. even going as far back as 2013. I’m so sorry for y’all deserving that are having so many problems receiving your money, I can only imagine your frustration. This is my first time ever filing for unemployment benefits, and hopefully the last, but I honestly am beyond grateful that this is available to us without a job thru no fault of our own. This whole process has been flawless and so easy, not stressful in the least bit. I filed for Unemployment benefits on August 19, was accepted without even knowing it was approved until I received my debit card in the mail just a few weeks later. I just filed my 4th weekly claim this evening. I did not receive any money for the first week, the waiting week they call it?? My first deposit came September 13th, at like midnight Monday night going into Tuesday morning. Very quick, definitely wasn’t expecting the process to be so simple and so fast. I can’t complain and really hope those of you being affected get everything resolved asap, sorry you had a bad experience :/

  • Been waiting 12 weeks still nothing same problem as everybody else can not get ahold of anyone all payments say possessing active issues 3 months of calling leaving voice mails emails no response from no one

  • Link to the committee that is responsible for unemployment compensation. Flood their emails, let’s take a strong united stance to get some help!! I’ve already sent my emails..going on 10 weeks with no response to my unemployment claim.

  • Sheila

    This is beyond crazy. I have never heard of this before. There is no number to talk to someone, no location to go to and no response…This is really unbelievable how this is orchestrated. Its like if you get laid off any time soon, you WILL NOT get benefits to help you ……this is crazy and I cant believe this is happening in 2016……it has been 4 weeks for me and these other stories are just baffling……..

    • As has been indicated in other responses, email your state representative and USDOL per links provided above. Low-tax/low COL states are all well and good if you are employed. When you are not employed, there are no safety nets or govt is so understaffed that the safety nets which do exist cannot be administered. All of you in this situation may want to rethink your state governance. As I stated upthread, the issues in TN have been a chronic and ongoing for many, many years.

  • Tracey

    Same problems here! Today marks 8wks since I filed & each week says “In Progress” except the first wk which says “Not applicable” which was the holding week that’s suppose to get release after you submit 3 or 4 weekly claims. I’ve left messages, sent emails, sat on chat for hours. No one will help you! This is insane!

  • Ron

    I have the same problem as Elizabeth above, including the same time frame. The difference on my issue is that I opened a ticket after 4 weeks of no payment, and received no response, So I opened a second ticket after 3 weeks and asked if there was anything a need to send in to assist in resolving my non payment issue and they closed the new ticket without any response and reset the last activity date and time to the date and time that me new ticked was closed on my original ticket without updating the original ticket.

    I do not believe the people on the front lines at the state are uncaring, however I believe the state of TN once again changed the way something (this time unemployment) is processed and handled without properly ensuring the new way was complete and ready.

    The next step is to inform the Governor, Commissioner and my Representative of the issue I am having.

    Should enough people contact Channel 4 about the issues we are having maybe there would be some action.

  • Elizabeth

    Hello everyone. I too am experiencing the same issues. This Sunday, August 21st, will be my 9th week certifying with no payments yet. Every week I certify it says “still under review” and all weeks are “processing”. Call their line, never get a live person, supposed to leave a voicemail. Started a ticket about the issue, no response on that either. I’ve left messages on the commissioner’s voicemail, which obviously haven’t worked either. My next step is emailing the governor, commissioner, and senators. I have already emailed News Channel 4 about this as well. They emailed back asking for my phone number, which I sent to them 2 weeks ago, but haven’t heard anything yet. I would say we should all get together and go down to the unemployment office, stand out front picketing, and call the news station so they can air it on tv. Closed mouths don’t get fed and obviously these people are not the least bit concerned with us, or what kind of financial hardships they are putting us in further. One voice doesn’t get heard but many voices they can’t ignore. If anyone is interested in getting a group together to go stand in front of the unemployment office with the news there, please email me at pg2381@yahoo.com

  • Shelly Lewis

    I have also been waiting 9 weeks and still no response ! All the website says is regular active . So i guess ill just lose everything i own thanks TN .Btw i am already employed but im so far behind on everything no way im gonna get caught up! Contacting governors office in the morning .

  • krissy

    How do you check the status of your unemployment claim for tn? All it says for me on the website is regular active.. What does that mean??

  • Gary

    Unreal. Because I am a contractor that works for multiple companies in different states, I can not file on-line. I am given instructions to call 877 813 0950. When I call, I am instructed to leave a message and someone will return my call and also instructed not to call multiple times because that will delay the return call. Well that was 06/06/16. Today is 08/08/16 and still no return call. I also sent an email to the help desk 07/12/16 and got a automated response the next day. Sent another email to the help desk about 2 weeks later and no response at all. Typical government system that does not work.

    • It is all but impossible to talk with anyone live in TN. Why, exactly, are you filing in Tennessee, anyway? Just because you live in Tennessee is not a reason to file for benefits in that state. You need to look at all the states in which you have worked going back one year at least. Your wages may not have been reported to Tennessee at all, but rather to the state in which you last worked, which means you could apply in that state and request a combined-wage claim. Further, there are other states which pay much higher benefits than Tennessee. So, look at your last several states of employment. If you care to post where you have worked over the last year and when, it would be helpful.

  • Tony

    This is the worst! I am at my wits end trying to figure out what is taking so long. If anyone has any updates please share them, It would be good to see a happy ending to this mess.

  • Rene

    Email the details of your claim & issues to burns.phillips@tn.gov. He’s the commissioner of the dept of labor & workforce development. Maybe if enough people email him, there will be some response.

  • Krystal

    Does anyone know who else to call besides the state of tennessee about this issue? I have only receieved unemployment one other time, but that was in Alaska. And it was super easy. Once the amount was determined you called “victor” every sunday and your money always came in a timely fashion. This is ridiculous. And the money is mine. I have a family and bills to pay. While I have already found another job, it’s no where near the amount of money I was making at my previous job and I am obviously, thanks to Tennessee, behind on all my bills. Has anyone made any progress or have any other numbers? Do any of you have anything nice to say, or has anyone actually received any unemployment anywhere??

  • Joanne

    This is insane! How can we still have people to help us get a driver’s license but no one to talk to in person to get unemployment benefits I am so disgusted with our governor that he doesn’t even care that people are unable to get their unemployment benefits I’ve also been certifying for weeks with no response only that there is an active issue that I have no idea what it is and that I had excessive earnings when I’ve had no earnings

  • Natasha

    I am experiencing the same irritating thing! I thought I would be receiving my first payment this week. Instead I have this excessive earnings and it will not let me certify. I have submitted two tickets and cannot reach a live person. That live chat is a joke!!! I agree about just giving a person the money they’ve worked for. People do have bills to pay!!!!

  • Jatoni

    I have been doing my weekly certifications since 06/11/2016 up until my 3rd week it let me certify. The 4th week it said I had excessive earnings. The 5th week which is today it making me re certify like I never applied for unemployment. I have submitted several tickets and emails and still no answer. It’s sad you can’t speak to a human being. I just want my money so I can pay my bills!

  • Kim

    I have the same situation as R.D. It has been 4 weeks – up until this week it stated, 1st week “waiting week”, the other weeks “in progress. now states “excessive earnings”. No explanations – no way to talk to anyone!

  • R.D

    It been four weeks and I have not received nothing. At first it said in progress and now it saying excessive earnings. What in the hell do all that mean. I just want an answer.

  • Sarah Morris

    I filed my claim on 5/20/16 and still have yet to receive any payment! I am going to lose my home if we do not get this soon. I cannot believe how long this is taking. Does anyone have any idea when I will get the money for my claim??? This is the first time I’ve ever filed unemployment and I am just disgusted with how long it is taking. Do they not realize that these are people with families and mouths to feed? I so badly just want to cry and give up because our finances are so bad right now.

  • Christina

    I filed my claim on May 15,2016. I have only received a monetary determination letter. I check online everyday to see the status of my account and it still states that no monetary determination has been made. I have tried 6 times to send a help ticket and I never get a response. I even check to see the status of my help tickets and some say closed as if someone helped me and no one has responded. I can’t file an appeal because no decision has been made. I have tried calling the number and I get no real person it just directs me to go online. I called the career center here in Dickson, TN and she just told me I had to do a help ticket that no one is in the office that deals with unemployment now. I can’t get any information as to what is going on with my claim and if I need to file an appeal. Any advice?

  • Heather

    So does everbody have a waiting week or I that for only ppl who are approved? I can never get intouch with anyone

  • Lucinda

    No one NEVER returns phone call when messages have been left. Been OVER 30 days since originally filed claim and still awaiting reply. Have completed the weekly requirements each week online as well. How do you reach a PERSON to obtain needed information when the information we need is not available on the TN4gov website. ?
    Very poor communication from unemployment office.

  • Christa

    My dashboard has transaction num ers for my first four weeks of benefits and it says the full ammount has been paid out but I have not received a si gle payment yet…….I have spoken to FOUR representatives who say “everything looks fine and it says payments have been sent” but they havent and where there should be a pay by date it just says “in progress”….. This will be my fifth week I’m owed when I certify Sunday but no hope of getting paid becasue there is obviously an issue but nobody knows what it is…….I finally got the second rep to email a payment specialist the third person I spoke with was him…..and he said I ” should have received payments” and doesn’t know why I haven’t……..every person says they will call me when something changes but something is wrong and it isn’t going to change untill someone does something……..who should I contact?????????????????

  • Toni Klepper

    I need information about filing a complaint against the state of Tennessee unemployment agency. I will also be reporting their violation of federal guidelines regarding the time limit for claim denial or approval.
    My initial claim filing was already DELAYED due to the system “update” which completely prevented use or access to ANY telephone OR online resources. Despite the fact that I NEEDED to file on May 11, 2016, I had to wait until May 16, 2016.
    Once my claim was submitted, I began certifying weekly as required. I fully understood the possible 21 day* delay for a final decision to be made, but it has been an ENTIRE MONTH during which NOBODY has contacted me at ALL.
    *(“Many of our claims have a decision in less than seven days but within federal guidelines, one will be finalized no more than 21 days of your claim. If additional information is needed, an agent will contact you. Furthermore, when a decision is issued, you will be notified via the preferred method of communication selected while filing the claim.”)–the link to site is https://lwdsupport.tn.gov/hc/en-us/articles/220092688-What-are-Outstanding-Claim-Issues-
    I have left voicemails, emails and chat messages. I have submitted inquiries. I have created and submitted “tickets”. I have spent hours on hold, but have yet to speak to a human being affiliated with unemployment. I called the Tennessee Labor and Workforce Development MAIN office, and while the person I spoke with completely agreed that the lack of response or information was UNACCEPTABLE, she was not able to help.
    My “claim status” continues to say “ACTIVE ISSUES” that “REQUIRE STAFF REVEIW”. The agency has neglected to contact me regarding the “ISSUES”, and has FAILED to respond to ANY of my inquiries or requests for information.
    Therefore, I feel I am entitled to, if not OBLIGATED to, report the complete disregard for claimants requesting help/information from the Tennessee unemployment agency. I plan to initiate the process of holding them RESPONSIBLE for violating federal guidelines which are in place to ensure that claimants are RECEIVING the benefits they have EARNED and are ENTITLED TO under the LAW.

    • L Goins

      Toni,

      I have received the same message for the past four weeks about having an active issue that needs to be resolved. I have called, mailed a letter, did the Request (twice), and did the Chat. All to no avail because of no response. Just wanted to let you know that you are not the only one.

      • Natasha Davis

        UPDATE!!!! I was reading you guys comments on yesterday and was having the same issues. It has been 10 weeks with no payment contact or anything. I took the advice of someone that left a reply to contact my state legislators. Well I did, I sent them a nice email just explaining my issue and my concern on yesterday. I was emailed back within 30 minutes, and recieved a phone call from someone in the office that same day. My issues were corrected with my unemployment (which I had no idea I had) and approved and I will be receiving my payments tomorrow. Hope this can help you guys because it helped me!! Good luck!!

    • DTB

      My husband is going on week 11, yes 11 and NOTHING! I am so frustrated and we can’t get any help either. I think something is just not right with their new system and no one seems to know or care. Please post with an update if you find out anything. I am beyond aggravated! We have bills to pay and a 4 year old child to take care of. This is supposed to help get you through, not stress you out more!!! My husband has talked to someone, but apparently it is not doing any good. The system changed at one point and looked like we were going to get paid, but when he certified that week, it all went back to $0. And it said he had excessive earnings! WHAT!?! Good luck to you!

    • Tracey

      Did you ever get any response? I’m in week #8 of my claim saying “In Progress” and of course I get left sitting for hours when I try to chat on the jobs4tn site only to eventually get kicked off or told to leave a message. I’ve sent message and get no reply. When I check the ticket status it says “solved” yet no one has ever solved any of my questions. I also want to file a complaint against them!! This is ridiculous! A friend told me her husband finally found a job and NEVER got any of his unemployment from the gap in between jobs. They should’ve had to pay for his claims! I do not want to take any temp jobs and mess up the process and now afraid if I do find a job I’m gonna lose the 8wks I’m owed!

  • Steven Portwood

    situation. Teacher is not renewed in Metro-Nashville, but accepts a job in Hixson County. Applies for unemployment, approved. Has to relocate and start anew. School system pays once per month. First month on job, no pay, held back. Second month draws check. You folks say she owes YOU TWO months that were unauthorized. What is she suppose to live for for 2 months while her pay period, which is part of State and County funds is processed and held?? I hope your realize to tell a TEACHER that she has to pay back $1700+ is a major strain on an already struggling standard of living! I can maybe see ONE month, but not two. Is there any thing she can to get this looked at? Im sure you know how important a Teachers job is, without teachers, you would not be sitting in your chair drawing Tax Payers money and being hard on people trying to help your kids . I would like to know how to correct this bad situation.

    • All states operate the same way. Benefits are paid to people who are NOT working. Benefits are not paid just because there is a gap between when you start work and when you get paid.

      If you fraudulently receive benefits for the weeks you are employed and then also finally get paid for those weeks, you have been paid TWICE and must repay those benefits. You were not entitled to unemployment benefits because you were NOT unemployed.

      You are fortunate you are not in CA. You not only would lose the $1,700, you would be penalized an additional 30% ($510), and disqualified from future benefits for 13-14 weeks for the next three years. It is FRAUD to claim benefits when you are working – no matter how long you need to wait for a paycheck.

      Hard as it is these days to save, one MUST have at least three-six months living expenses in an emergency fund for just these occurrences.

  • Robby Castile

    I have been trying since Jan. 7th to receive unemployment I AM APPROVED for,why the hell am I about to loose my house if I am approved?Oh yeah,its because you wont give me any payments…….it’s on your end,and dont respond with a god damn email,CALL ME OR SOMETHING YOU JERKS

  • What do you have to do to get an unemployment check? TN sucks

  • lynn

    I can’t get past the verification id process. This is a total joke. none of the questions pertained to me however all pertained to my ex husband & his current wife of which I have been divorced from for over 20 years. total joke. the reason unemployment is down is this state is the people that are unemployed can’t get signed up for unemployment. And there is no one to help you on the phone. cant take care of it in person. I have talked to other co workers and they can’t get past the verification either. im not alone.

  • This seems to me that this agency needs to be looked at & reviewed by some outside professional. Reading the complaints I had several off the same. This is suppose to be there to help you, not to be a hindrance from receiving your benefits. I myself working for over thirty years never been laid off. Or drawn for benefits this has been very frustrating trying to use their automation system. And for the 50 and above with computer skill that self taught. I think you need to be able to talk with live person. It may help you if you contact your state senators office. They may be able to give you some help. But this systems needs help bad this is ridiculous.

  • Need to talk to someone about re-certifying for extension – unemployment is running out..

    • There are no extensions. If your benefit year has not yet expired, you need to wait until then to file another claim. If you haven’t worked during your first benefit year, TN will not grant another claim.

  • Tried online. Would not accept my DOB. There is ALWAYS something wrong with Tennnessee online forms. Rate is terrible and unhelpful. Now I will go to office.

  • i can’t do my weekly benefit because it locked

  • I was fired by talley const for defending myself.I’m a heavy equip operater.a guy from a different race. he stopped me on a scraper and started a fight with me and i was fired and he wasn’ that’s racial discrimanation

    • Racial discrimination is an EEOC matter, not an unemployment benefit issue. Apply for benefits – but expect to be denied because of misconduct/fight, and you will need to appeal. Also, file an EEOC claim – that may provide a better result.

  • For those having trouble. I made a mistake filing my claim by hitting back space which submitted it unfinished. I immediately submitted an online ticket request & received a call back within 24 hours. True reaching someone by phone is nearly impossible but that’s because everything was set up online & local offices were shut down. My boyfriend made a mistake certifying by answering the question wrong & had issues like everyone else. He didn’t understand how I kept getting in touch with them as I had an overpayment issue of $27 that could’ve prevented me from recieving benefits and with them I left a message & again recieved a callback within 24 hours and another confirming that I had no overpayment about 2 days later. So if you need to speak to someone unfortunately, you’re probably going to have to file a ticket request but they respond quickly. If you can leave a message try that. Hope this helps. 🙂

  • My agency filed for my umemployment during shutdown in Dec.The address was wrong.I have fixed that.o need to know about that claim before I try to file now.Cannot get a person ever…

  • I would like to know why i can’t get unemployment this is why i work all the time and when i need help i can’t find it

  • I need to find out about my husband’s unemployment.

  • I have been trying to get unemployment for 4 mouths Oct 5,2014.And no one will talk to me about it.That’s labor and workforce what a joke.

  • kim

    I had the same issues couldnt get approved and it had been almost 2 months. I called the state representatives office and in a weeks time im approved and my unemployment check is on its way to my bank..

  • Everyone, looks like we are all having the same problem. Locked out, can’t talk to a person, not getting money, stupid pin, and can’t certify. This is going to sound lame but it works!! Call your governor , they will contact someone in Nasville then they will contact you. The more calls they get the faster they’ll work on it!!

  • I have been calling my unemployment but I can’t get it to go though what can I do the week is up and I’m not going to get pay so I’m not going to have any money coming in

  • If u are locked out due to pin the dummy pin is 0000

  • I called 877-813-0950 at 3:30 AM and it said could not take the call because of high volume of calls, so the phone number is a burn line. No one will make contact this way, I suggest you drive to your nearest center. The systems does not meet the required standards but no one in this government cares or takes any responsibility.

  • At the top of the page of Tennessee unemployment there is “Unemployment Tracker” click that and check the status. If it says decision made you don’t have to do anything. If it says waiting on employers response then you have to fax your unemployment paper in to them. My employer didn’t do that for me but when I faxed the separation notice in my claim was approved right away. Good luck to those having issues.

  • What is the number to talk to a real person???

  • hey they say my account has been locked and I can get no benefits because its locked and nobody answer the phones, am tired of this.

  • I haven’t been able to check my benefit schedule on-line for 2 weeks now. It always says its down and gives 2 numbers to call. I haven’t received my benefits in 2 weeks.

  • Looks like the no-answer on the phone has been going on since last year. I guess I’ll just have to show up at the door.

  • Trying to find status of my unemployment claim!

  • Hello I have been calling for four days and I went to the Tenn.Career Center but I get not get the help I need my chase card have expired and I need a new card they told me that I have $130.on the card please help me now.

  • I haven’t recieve my first check because of a appeal I file oct.22, 2014 do I get my backpay for those months because its been 2months…please contact me at 615 589-1561

  • I am so confused, I can’t certify, my account is locked and I can’t talk to a real person. Can someone please help me? I have not drawn the first check, I’ve been off work for 5 weeks. Please contact me.

  • I have been trying since august got my letter saying I’m approved, nothing yet this is a joke every Time I call to certify it says my pin is locked. what r we supposed to do starveto death.I need answers .I need to talk to a person not a computer plz.thanx

  • I filed my claim 08/21/2014, and still have not heard whether I am approved or denied. I’m just curious as to: 1) how soon does a decision get made? 2) why can’t I certify if I’m supposed to do it every week? I have tried to certify by phone and online, but I keep getting the same response, “your certification cannot be completed as timely.” What does that mean, and how can I get my certifications submitted? I don’t like complaining, but I’m also a mother & expecting my second child, I am out of work and my family and I are kind of counting on it. Any response/answer is appreciated, I would really like this resolved.

  • Please help i need a extension on my unemployment and i cant get ahold of noone but the automated thing!!! Please call and send me a new card i have lost it in a wreck i had but my phone number is 9014889551 or 6034153!!! Im still umemployed and lookin i need help.

    • If you have exhausted all benefits on your claim, there are no extensions. If you are wanting to reopen the claim to collect, try to do that online. There should also be a way online to replace the debit card. Otherwise, contact your state legislator. TN is impossible to reach by phone. Email your state legislator. You will get an immediate response:

      http://www.capitol.tn.gov/legislators/

  • I filed for unemployment 7/31/14 and received a response by phone 8/06/14 and also received a letter in the mail stating what I will receive. I have been certifying every Sunday since then and was told that I will know by August 20th if I will get my unemployment benefits. I tried calling to speak with an representative but no luck only automatic line that says the same thing (a decision has not been made yet and it can take up to 28 days.Please keep certifying every week for your benefits ). Today is Sept 06 and I still have not received any information or answers to the questions I have about my unemployment benefits. Please help!!!

  • I have not received my unemployment direct deposit due to yesterday being labor day. Has anyone else received benefits? This is stressful.

  • I received ui benefit of $275.00 on the Chase Debit card on Aug. 4,2014. I have not received any text to notify me of another ui payment. I’ve called 877-813-0950 —800-689-9799 and they say no payments have been made, and my claim is still being processed .. I have been certifying every Sunday by phone. Are there any certain days the payment is put on my Chase card?

  • Ive been approved says deposited made yesterday , its not on my card this morning. Where did it get deposited? Who do I call to find out where the money went? Need help

  • I answered a question wrong on my certification have not been able to talk to anyone about this problem I call several times a day no one is available to take my call they say they that have my number an email haven’t heard anything from this has been going on for several weeks please help

  • My company filed my benefit application for me. When I call the tn gov unumployment number it ask for my pin. I don’t have one and there is no panel where I can create one. Because I logged in without one, now I can’t get in at all. Can someone text me or email me and tell me what to do? Text: 731 six one seven 0441. Please. Serious replies only. Also, can some one send me a number where I can talk to a live person in Nashville.

  • my unemployment payment was sent off wensday july 2,2014 and i was told it should be on my card by that friday july 4, 2014 but due to the holiday it said depositea wont show till that monday the 7th. when should my payments show up or when should i receive it.

  • I received my claim approval letter. So what do I do about the weeks I couldn’t certify. I live in Mississippi and I don’t know what to do. Will someone please help me! Please help! I haven’t got a call or anything. I call and the automated services say they got my number and they are going to call but nothing. Please please help!

  • I did my claim on May 12. I did my weekly certification that Sunday and I didn’t know that I might have pushed the wrong buttons with my face . I tried to do my certification for the next week and the following weeks and it won’t let me. I have been calling the 1(877)-813-0950 number and can’t get thru. Please help!

  • I lost my job on March 31st. File unemployment and they gave me a date of May 28th. I received no information. Tried to call our local unemployment office and they said all they could do was send an email and I should hear something in 5 to 7 days. It’s been two weeks and I still haven’t heard from anyone. Can’t find a number that isn’t automated. So, it’s been 3 months and I don’t know what is going on.

  • I can’t get in touch with no one to file they said i need a pin # don’t have one i call the #’s they give me nothing, Sharon Kitts i know how you feel we all need help. i just want my money. they said they are going to get in touch no one called or email me need Help

  • II’ve tried to call can’t get though and get my claim fixed and try to recertified on internet to and its allways busy or no one available this is major problem for me bout to loose everything cause I can’t get through to get help and never got email or call and dnt know how to turn in where I’m putting in apps at either cause the unemployment office is shut down in my town

  • I have ben certified and accepted since November 2013,s but I never receive any payments. Please help me.

  • I have been calling in my claims for 10 wks and a decision has not yet been made so can u plz tell me how long its going to be. im a mother of 8 kids so what all do we have to lose before we can get a decision.

  • I have been certified every week but still there is no money on my card and I cannot talk to a person please tell me what to do

  • Dec 28 2013 was my last check.the unemployment told me to cerify till jan16 i can’t certify now i only drew 2wks of tier3. I’m still looking for work.it wasn’t my fought i got layed off.i have lost everything.am i gonna get to draw if they pass the emergency unemployment?????please let me no . thank you.have a g. ood day.

  • i have received my paperwork stateing how much i would get. i am haveing trouble with my pin and gaining access to my account . could you please let me know watt is up thank you .

  • I have been certifying every week, I’ve been accepted but no benefits have been on my card. I’m unable to speak to a person.

  • Oh and this is after seeing there’s going to be a report on the local news here in Nashville tonight on ABC-WKRN2. WSMV ran a story too. Get on the phone with your local media and bring their attention to it, that might get something going in your favor if needed…God Bless.

  • I filed 11/2013. Received letter in mail that I would receive payment starting 12/24/13. Today is 2/3/14, just got info today they have mailed a check. Was supposed to be direct deposited into my bank, so I’ll believe it when I see an actual check.

  • While i was calling in to certify on a touch screen phone and i made a mistake and push 9 instead of 1 on one of my question… and now the system want let me get in to do nothing… i have been calling since last Monday and i just cannot get threw…but since i did that i can’t get any benefits cause i don’t qualify now… so can somebody please tell me what to do cause my bills are past due.

  • Said i need a pin # …never was given one then said it was locked…suspend? What is going on….I have called every phone # listed 100 times….cant get anyone ….then no will call me back either.This right i bills that are due…..plus i have been looking for job with no luck…Please Please….someone help

  • I have called ALL phone numbers possible for help with a claim and have got no where. How the heck do you talk to a real person and not a computer??

  • I filed for benefits Nov 4 I have not even received a response an the phone number 877 813 0950 is a joke I have 4 children an loosing our home I am contacting the gov office this is not except able!

  • i applied for unemployment Nov 25 2013 and its saying i benfit has been exalt.thats could not be true. i been trying all day to call the num.1-877-813-0950. so can you tell me what going on

    • TN is impossible to reach by phone. Email your state legislator. You will get an immediate response:

      http://www.capitol.tn.gov/legislators/

      • BJ

        I have a question. You said contact your state rep. I am not sure who that is. When I hit the link its pulls up staff, etc. How do I know if emailing the right person?. I emailed someone a day ago, but still got no response. Its has been 15 weeks not one call, not one email or one payment from unemployment.

        • Read the posts at the end of this page.

          Contacting your ELECTED state representative works every time.

          Go back to that link, provide your zipcode in the box which says “find my legislattor” – should populate with names and email contacts for your state legislators.

          Email the elected representative directly – NOT staff. Most of those people do not have full-time staff. Others here have had no problem. Try again.

  • I applied for unemployment Nov 5. I have not received any thing in the mail or email about the claim. On the phone it says pending, no decision made. Whats going on?

    • The earliest you will be paid in any state is three weeks after filing, although you will generally at least receive some acknowledgement of the claim. That said, TN takes a very long time to approve benefits and is impossible to contact by phone. If you haven’t heard anything in another two weeks, email your state legislator. He will respond:

      http://www.capitol.tn.gov/legislators/

      • Mark

        I filed with TN on July 6, 2016. Today is Oct. 23, 2016…just received notice that back log of deposits will be sent soon. 16 weeks from initial filling to first check. Unbelievable and very frustrating.

        • Very typical of Tennessee and unacceptable. Had you contacted your state representative two months ago, you would have been paid then. TN gets off the mark when it hears from its elected representatives. Four months is pure incompetence on the part of that state.

  • I was finally able to file a claim on-line on Friday, 11/01/13. Monday 11/04/13 I made my first certification on line; was informed I did not meet eligibility requirements – probably because I did not seek employment from 10/27-11/02. I had not filed a claim yet. Today (11/05) I have tried to respond to this problem by telephone (1-877-813-0950) since SEVEN am. HELP

    • If you filed on a Friday, you have no eligibility to benefits for that week at all. Your eligibility begins on Sunday of the first week after you file. You need to wait until the following Sunday to file for benefits for week ending November 9th.

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