During the pandemic era, unemployment rates are getting higher every day. It is crucial to understand how unemployment insurance works, under which circumstances benefits may be denied, and how you can appeal.
Proving eligibility can be complicated. If you or someone you love became unemployed recently and need advice on how to handle this situation, contact an Ohio workers’ compensation lawyer to help you protect your rights and get the unemployment benefits you deserve.
How To Be Eligible For Unemployment
Firstly, you must prove that you are temporarily out of work. Second, you must meet the minimum earnings requirements of your state. If you fail to meet these requirements, your unemployment benefits claim will be denied.
Another general rule is that if you quit your job, you cannot get unemployment benefits unless you left your job for a “good cause.” A specific fact-based analysis in each state determines the good cause and whether you are eligible for collecting unemployment benefits. However, some common situations in all jurisdictions justify quitting your job and allow you to collect unemployment benefits. Some examples of these situations are the following:
- If you were forced to quit your job due to discrimination and harassment – if your working environment is unbearable, due to constant harassment on the job, it constitutes violations of the federal and state antidiscrimination laws. This is called constructive discharge.
- If your workplace is hazardous, employers violate the Safety State Laws, forcing their employees to use not well maintained and dangerous equipment or breath toxic fumes. In such a case, walking out of there can be justified.
- If your employer acts illegally – when your employer engages in illegal acts, quitting your job and not being part of this law violation is the right thing to do.
- If you need to relocate due to health issues or family reasons – if you need to move away to take care of a person you love that needs your help, or if you need to move away because you are seeking medical treatment for yourself, quitting your job is justified. Another example is when your spouse is a military officer that is relocated, and you need to follow them to the new location.
It is certain that if your situation can not justify a good cause for leaving your job, your unemployment claim will be denied. If you just voluntarily quit your job, you cannot be entitled to any benefit.
Another reason to be denied your unemployment claim is being fired from your job for misconduct. Typical examples of misconduct are:
- Not following the safety protocols
- Ignoring the company’s rules and policies
- Working under the influence of substances
- Being always late at work
- Being often absent from work
- Stealing or engaging in other criminal activity
If you were fired because the company is trying to reduce their costs or because you are not a very good fit for the position, you will typically still qualify for unemployment.
Ready, Willing, and Able to Work
If you are laid off from work, you must demonstrate your ability and willingness to find another job and be eligible for unemployment benefits. You must show proof of your job search. During the Covid-19 pandemic, some states are not very strict with this condition.
Nevertheless, even if you want to stay at home for a good reason, like taking care of your kids, you will probably not qualify for unemployment.
Unemployment Benefits Application Procedure
You can file your unemployment application online, in person, or over the phone. However, you have to be careful with the instructions and provide all the necessary information correctly.
You can always visit your local unemployment office for clarifications.
Unemployment During the Pandemic
If you need to quit your job and stay home to take care of your children while schools are closed due to the pandemic, you still qualify for unemployment. Furthermore, if the conditions at work are not proper and you are in imminent danger, you can refuse to work and still be qualified for unemployment.
What to Do When Unemployment Claim Is Denied
If your claim is denied, you can file for an appeal. Keep in mind that there are time limits for these procedures.
If you need more information about your unemployment benefits, you should consult an experienced workers’ compensation attorney. It is best to get legal advice and protect your rights. Call us today at Workers Compensation Lawyers firm for your free consultation.