PA Unemployment FAQs

1. What is Unemployment Compensation and what are the eligibility criteria?

2. How to apply for Unemployment Compensation benefits in the state?

3. What is Pennsylvania Unemployment Tax Rate?

4. What are the necessary requirements while filing the initial claim?

5. What are the Unemployment Compensation payment procedures?

6. Is it possible to get benefits if you are fired from a company?

7. If you quit the job on your own are you eligible for the benefits claim?

8. How to file the Interstate Unemployment Compensation in Pennsylvania?

9. What is the eligibility to obtain Extended Benefit?

10. What is the process to claim Extended Benefit?

1. What is Unemployment Compensation and what are the eligibility criteria to obtain?

Unemployment Compensation (UC) is the temporary income that offers earnings in case if you have lost your job for no faults of yours. The amount you receive will be for a limited period till the time you look for another suitable job. To be eligible for benefits, you need to fulfill the criteria of PA unemployment eligibility, an individual must be an employee who has executed the service expected by the UC Law and he should be eligible to work.

Video on PA Unemployment Eligibility –

In case if you are a part time worker then you may be eligible for partial benefit. But as expected from the laws defined by Pennsylvania you should be available to work and actively searching for job.

2. How to apply for Unemployment Compensation benefits in the state Pennsylvania?

It is very essential to be familiar with how and when you must file the claim for Unemployment Compensation Benefits. Initial Unemployment Compensation applications for claiming the benefits are filed through online via Internet or through telephonic sources Pennsylvania Tele-claims (PAT) of US service centers. You may visit the Pennsylvania Unemployment online site which is the best way to file your Unemployment Claim that is available 24 hours a day and seven day a week.

To file the claim over phone you can call to the

Toll-free number at 1-888-313-7284

For TTY services for the deaf and hard of hearing: you may call on 1-888-334-4046

You may call between 7 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. Monday through Friday

7 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Sunday, The best times to call are later in the day and later in the week.

Watch this video on how to contact PA Unemployment office –

3. What is Pennsylvania Unemployment Tax Rate?

Generally tax contribution rate notice will be forwarded to employers through mail at the end of each calendar year that includes the effective tax rate for the upcoming calendar year. The percentage determines the taxable wage paid (upto a maximum of $8,000 for each employee) to find out the exact amount of employer’s contribution due.

Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation taxes are pay $8,000 of wages for each employee. Pennsylvania’s Unemployment Compensation tax are experienced-rated with such rates ranging from 2.21 percent to 10.5 percent. A new employer will pay contributions at 3.75 percent for non-construction employees and 10.4 percent for construction employees on up to the first $8,000 in taxable wages paid to each employee for the calendar year. This rate remains in effect for approximately two years. After two years, the employer should have sufficient experience to be entitled to a calculated rate for future year.

4. What are the necessary requirements while filing the initial claim?

While Filing PA Initial Claim, first and foremost thing that you need to consider in order to obtain Unemployment Benefit is to be ready with all below stated check lists, details for your reference:

  • Your name, social security number, addresses and telephone number.
  • In case if you are claiming file for dependents then you need to have their names, birth dates and social security numbers.
  • Complete payroll address, reason for separation for each employer you worked for last 18 months before filing the claims.

Video on Filing requirements –

5. What are the Unemployment Compensation payment procedures?

There are two types of payment options while receiving the Unemployment Compensation Benefits. The claimant can receive the payment to his existing savings or checking account. Once the amount is processed you can access the cash with your accessible ATM card.

The second option is by direct deposit which is the easiest and convenient way to get your money transferred hence you need to provide the details of:

  1. Bank name, street address, city, state and Zip Code.
  2. Bank telephone number
  3. Bank account number
  4. Bank account routing number

6. Is it possible to get the unemployment compensation benefit if you are fired from a company?

If you were fired from the company on the basis that the job was not suitable for your position and if you were terminated on the reason that the company has reduced the production and cutting off the employees then you may be qualified for unemployment benefits.

If you are fired on the basis of misconduct behavior then you may not be eligible for the unemployment compensation. Misconducts in behavior are treated over violation of company policies or rules, falsifying records or any other serious misbehavior related to your employment.

7. If you have resigned the job on your own are you eligible for the benefit claim?

In most of the cases if you have quit the job on your own then you will not eligible for the compensation. But in some rare cases you can still collect the benefit on the reasons like if you would have left the job for good cause.

Self resigning would also assist you in claiming benefits. The situations include the reasons like unsafe working conditions, not being paid, unexpected change in your job duties, discrimination, health and safety risks over the job or some types of family emergency reasons.

8. How to file the Interstate Unemployment Compensation in Pennsylvania?

If in case you have worked in more than one state in the duration of base period then you would be eligible to claim the PA interstate unemployment compensation. Generally base period is calculated as the first four months of the past five calendar quarters.

In order to be entitled to claim an interstate unemployment compensation in Pennsylvania:

  • It is essential to have worked in the state Pennsylvania along with at least one other state.
  • You can also file the unemployment claim in Pennsylvania though you are not a resident of Pennsylvania but have worked that state.

9. What is the eligibility to obtain Extended Benefit?

Extended Benefits (EB) are the added Unemployment Compensation (UC) provided to unemployed who have exhausted his/her regular Pennsylvania Unemployment benefits during periods of high unemployment.

Additionally, there may be added benefits funding by the Federal government, that Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) benefits.

Unemployment Compensation benefits will be payable to the qualified individual.  While considering Pennsylvania Extended Benefit Period the compensation will be paid for the extensive weeks. The eligibility is applicable to the claimants who meet the Extended Benefits standards and criteria including additional eligibility provision that is not applicable Unemployment Compensation.

10. What is the process to claim Extended Benefit?

As a claimant if you are eligible and receiving the maximum benefit under Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC), it notifies those who have received their entire regular benefits that they may be eligible for Extended Benefits. Once you receive the notification from the Financial Determination through mail you can process for the claim.

You should receive the notification from your Financial Determination within ten days of your Emergency Unemployment Compensation payment if not you may contact to UC Service Center over the toll free number 1-888-313-7284 and clarify whether you are eligible for claiming or not.

12 thoughts on “PA Unemployment FAQs”

  1. My job was terminated on December due down sizing I will receive a severance package until Feb 28 2016. Do I need to file now or wait until my severance package in finished in Feb.

  2. Is a Military Spouse with orders to move about 2hours away from current job able to collect unemployment

    1. You can do so by calling claims center or logging in to your account online, on the department’s website.

  3. My job will be eliminated as November 26, 2016. I’ve been employed there for 21 yrs. I do collect social security would I qualify for unemployment? I’m 66 yrs old. I’m suppose to be offered a severance package. Not certain of that yet. Thank you. Sara L. Stetler

    1. Some states do provide UI benefits along with SS. You can call the Unemployment Office to ascertain the impact.

      A jobless worker can apply for Unemployment Compensation after the expiry of Severance payment.

  4. If i an release from job mid week, say, wed is my last day, is thurs and Friday my waiting week or must it be an entire week to wait before filing the following week,,, example, Wed, march 1st is last day, is Thurs and Friday waiting week and I can start claiming the next week, week beginning the 6th (Monday)?

    I receive 2 small pensions at the end of each month, how is that calculated with the unemployment for income, is it all for that one week that it is received and I would most likely not receive any unemployment for that week and then I start claiming again the following week with no waiting, the unemployment will just pick up again the next week…. or are those two small pension checks divided among the entire month (4 weeks)? Pension checks are received the 31st and 1st of each month,,,,example: $124 and $194, $330 or so per month received…..

    If I find employment and am offered a position and find out it is $$ per hour less than I was making at current job, do I have to take that job? Example, I am making $14.00/ hour and I find a job, interview and they offer the job and then I find out the job pays $9 or $10 per hour, do I have to take that job and if I decline, will I continue to get unemployment for the time I am allotted to receive benefits?

    1. The waiting week will be determined after you apply. If you’re offered a suitable job, you should be taking it up.

      For further questions and detailed clarification, please call the Unemployment Office.

  5. If I resigned from my job. And then got another job and was laid off for lack of work after 8 weeks is there any requirements to be eligible.

    1. Yes, you can be eligible on the basis of your last employment.

      Please consider applying.

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