Unemployment Claims In Pennsylvania and Ohio Spike due to Sandy

job lossesThe media will either overlook, or just not report on the spike in the first time unemployment, which is at its maximum in 18 months. While some first time filers were in New Jersey, and influenced by Hurricane Sandy, that number was offset by the DECREASE in first time filings in New York. Instead, two big battleground states that voted for Obama in the past election saw the maximum number of PA unemployment filings, Ohio and Pennsylvania. These states voted for Obama and are therefore enjoying the consequences. These states had little impact from Hurricane Sandy. The reason for the spike in filings was because of thousands of layoffs in the manufacturing, construction, and automobile industries.

Initial claims, which totaled 361,000 in the former week, climbed by 78,000 to 439,000, the highest reading since April, 2011.

“After a storm, the data is distorted to some extent, depending on the magnitude and geography of the disaster,” said Nathaniel Karp, chief economist for BBVA Compass. “Given what happened with Sandy,” he predicted, “we will see higher volatility in many indicators for a couple of months until everything begins to normalize.”

The four week moving average of initial claims, a measure that many economists support because it smoothes out short-term fluctuations, increased 17,750 to 383,750 from the former week’s revised average of 372,000. That’s a little worse reading than the year-ago moving average, which was 393,750.

The report indicated that the financial system is still growing below trend and trying to pick up some of lost momentum. While the government lately reported that 171,000 jobs were created last month, Karp said, such positive developments must take place at a quicker pace to make a difference.

“It can be somewhat frustrating, as we would like to see a stronger recovery, but at least we are moving forward,” said Karp.

The count of people continuing to obtain jobless benefits ascended in the week ended November 3 to 3.3 million, the maximum level since July of 2008, and 171,000 more than the previous week.

Sandy’s damage has not yet been fully reflected in the jobs data, the Labor Department said: Power outages from the storm have detained processing of

Sandy’s damage hasn’t yet been fully reflected in the jobs data, the Labor Department said: Power outages from the storm have delayed processing of first and emergency claims in hard-hit areas.

The states with the maximum unemployment filings were Pennsylvania, Ohio, New Jersey and Michigan. Ohio and Pennsylvania processed more claims than states hit by Sandy, due to construction layoffs.

“The construction industry is still under a severe recession,” said Tom Owens, director of communications at America’s Building Trade Unions.

“With government projects finishing up and the winter season coming on, we usually have a spike in unemployment,” said Owens.

In the unadjusted data, the labor department reported 4.9 million claims for the week ended October 27, a 2% decrease from the prior week. The total number is also a 26% decrease from those claiming unemployment in the week of 2011.

The report, along with the government’s fiscal-deficit situation, may increase pressure on policy makers to produce a sustainable U.S fiscal plan.

To calculate your benefits click on PA Unemployment Calculator.

PA Unemployment FAQs

Here are the most commonly asked questions about Pennsylvania unemployment compensation. Check out PA unemployment claims guide to understand the filing process and eligibility criteria.

Are the Benefits Taxable in Pennsylvania?

Unemployment Insurance benefits are subject to federal and state income taxes.

For unemployed workers who received unemployment insurance benefits, the IRS will tax all benefits after the first $2400. If taxes were not automatically withdrawn from your unemployment benefits check you could end up being liable for hundreds, if not thousands of dollars in taxes.

If you are searching for a job, gather all of your job search related receipts. You may be able to deduct expenses for items such as parking fees, resume services and even long distance phone calls and travel expenses related to searching for work.

Working Part-time and Collecting Unemployment in PA

You can work part-time and get unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania. In most cases, you are allowed to earn up to half of your weekly unemployment check while getting unemployment compensation. So, you are getting a $500 a week unemployment check, you can get up to $250 a week at a part time job without losing your benefits. Please contact PA Unemployment Office to get more details

Extended Unemployment Benefits

You can receive benefits extension, but there are some restrictions. You should contact the employment agency to determine the eligibility.

Severance Pay and Unemployment Benefits

You must report all payments received when filing your claim. Service Center will determine your weekly benefits. When a claimant receives or will receive a payment for any period after his last day of work, the UC Service Center must determine the nature of the payment. A payment that is considered to be severance, separation or salary continuation is not deductible from UC benefits, because these payments are not remuneration for services performed while UC benefits are being claimed.

Getting training while receiving PA unemployment compensation

The unemployment office will not pay for job training while claiming unemployment compensation benefits. Unemployment compensation does not pay training costs or tuition. Training opportunities may be available through Pennsylvania’s CareerLink system. You may visit their Web site at www.pacareerlink.state.pa.us.

Attending college while receiving PA unemployment compensation

The PA State Labour Law does not disqualify you from receiving benefits just because you are a full or part-time student. You will be eligible for any claim week that you are in training approved by the Secretary of the Department of Labor & Industry and are otherwise eligible.

How to Contact PA Unemployment Office

During the application time for jobless benefits, you may need to make contact with your local office quite a few times. This can be in response to a request for extra paperwork, as you have a simple question or because you have not been obtaining the promised benefits.

Watch this video which has vital information on contacting PA unemployment office –

What method of contact is better depends mostly on your reason for contacting it.

Unemployment compensation (UC) services are offered by telephone through local call centers and online. You may call the Unemployment compensation service center at 888-313-7284. A listing of local phone numbers, mailing addresses and fax numbers for the UC service centers is obtainable on the state map of services near you.

Select any county from the record and scroll down to: UC Benefit Services.

Be all set for long waits as lots of people attempt to do the same thing that you are. Remain patient and you will get through to someone who can assist you. Even if it’s annoying to wait so long, be polite to the person you get connected to and you will get a lot more assistance than if you are rude.

Whenever you call the PA unemployment phone number, ensure you have Social Security number, dates of employment and a paper to take down relevant notes.

UC Service Centers

In case you have filed an application for UC benefits within the last year, and have a specific question about your claim or your eligibility, call the UC service center.

Local and Toll-Free Service Center Phone Numbers:

UC Service Center Statewide Toll-Free Number 888-313-7284
TTY Services for Deaf andHard-of-Hearing Toll-Free 888-334-4046
Videophone Service for ASL Users-Wednesdays, noon-4 p.m. 717-704-8474
Allentown 610-821-6735
Altoona 814-941-6801
Duquesne 412-267-1315
Erie 814-871-4311
Indiana 724-599-1250
Lancaster 717-299-7711
Scranton 570-565-3048

Every UC service center is open from 8:a.m to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Mondays are usually a heavy call day. Individuals who wish to apply or claim UC benefits are encourages filing online or calling the UC service center later in the day and later in the week, preferably, when call volume is lighter.

In times of high call volume, a call back system may be in place. If you would like a return call, you must enter your Social Security number along with the telephone number where you can be reached. Calls are returned from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. The UC service center telephone system uses line blocking or caller ID block.

Callers who have unidentified call rejection activated on their telephone must disable this service to get calls from the UC service center.

By making a choice on the area map, you can obtain a list of these offices and other services available in your area.

If you have not filed an application for UC benefits within the past year, and have common questions about UC or questions about your UC-1099G (Statement for Recipients of PA UC Payments) provided for income tax purposes, call 717-783-3140 to (TTY for deaf or hard of hearing at 800-577-7216) the service center Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Pennsylvania Teleclaims-PAT Directory

Pennsylvania Teleclaims, or PAT, is an automatic self-service system employed by persons with access to a touch-tone telephone to

  • file biweekly UC claims
  • access specific benefit payment information
  • learn about the commonwealth’s UC program, without the involvement of an agent.

These services are accessible on Sunday from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.

PAT Local and Toll-Free Numbers:

PAT Toll-free 888-255-4728
PAT Toll-free TTY 800-778-4728
Español- PAT 877-888-8104
Allentown 610-821-6659
Altoona 814-941-6849
Duquesne 412-267-1494
Erie 814-878-5700
Indiana 724-599-1004
Lancaster 717-299-7560
ScrantonScranton TTY 570-562-4800570-562-4871
HarrisburgHarrisburg en Espanol 717-231-4055717-231-405