1. How it Works
If you lost your job and it was not your fault, you might be able to get Unemployment Insurance (UI) payments. UI will give you some money based on what you earned. You must be looking for a new job to get UI.
- You can file a claim for Unemployment Insurance (UI) if you worked in New York State within the last 18 months but are unemployed now.
- You can get up to 26 weeks of benefits while you are unemployed.
- A typical range of weekly UI benefits, depending on past wages, is about $100-$500 per week.
- Income from unemployment benefits is taxable on your federal and state tax returns.
- Requires a valid Social Security Number and government-issued ID card.
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More ways to get help with this program
Visit the website
Visit the NYS Unemployment Insurance website for more information.
Ask for New York State Unemployment Insurance assistance.
2. Determine your eligibility
You may be eligible for Unemployment Insurance (UI) if you:
- lost your job through no fault of your own (for example, you got laid off).
- worked within the last 18 months and are you ready, willing, and able to work immediately.
- are actively seeking work and keep a record (online or written) of your efforts.
- you earned enough income from your most recent work to establish a claim.
- are authorized to work in the US and were authorized to work when you lost your job.
File a claim even if you’re not sure if you are eligible.
Take a short survey to see if you might be eligible for this or 30 other programs.Am I Eligible?
3. What you need to include
These are documents you need to apply. You can apply without all of these documents. However, missing information can delay your first payment.
- Your Social Security number
- Your driver license or Motor Vehicle ID card number (if you have either one)
- Your complete mailing address and zip code
- A phone number where you can be reached from 8 am – 5 pm, Monday –Friday
- Your Alien Registration card number (if you are not a U.S. Citizen and have a card)
- Names and addresses of all your employers for the last 18 months, including those in other states
- Employer Registration number or Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) of your most recent employer (FEIN is on your W-2 forms)
- Your copies of forms SF8 and SF50, if you were a federal employee
- Your most recent separation form (DD 214), for military service
4. How to apply
Here are your options.
The easiest way to apply for unemployment benefits is online on the NYS DOL website. If you are found eligible for benefits, you will need to certify your benefits every week.
Apply by phone
Apply by phone by calling 888-209-8124. If you are found eligible, certify your benefits every week by calling 888-581-5812.
- Interpretation services are available.
- If you are hearing impaired, have your helper call the Telephone Claims Center at 888-783-1370.
- For TTY/TDD, call a relay operator first at 800-662-1220, and ask the operator to call the Telephone Claims Center at 888-783-1370 for you.
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