Have you or a member of your household been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic? With mandatory shutdowns nationwide, many Georgians have found themselves without a job. If you have been impacted by COVID-19, help is available to you. In this post, we will walk you through how to file for Unemployment in GA.
Temporary Unemployment Benefits can provide laid-off and furloughed workers with immediate financial relief. We will explain the requirements for emergency unemployment benefits and how you can apply remotely – online or over the phone.
Furthermore, we will list the documents or evidence you must to provide in order to successfully file your emergency unemployment benefits application.
This Georgia Unemployment Application Guide will cover:
- Emergency Unemployment Benefits due to Coronavirus
- Georgia Unemployment Benefits Eligibility
- Documents Needed to File for Unemployment in GA
- How to Apply for Georgia Unemployment Benefits Online
- What To Do After you File your Unemployment Claim
- GA Unemployment Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Unemployment Benefits Program in Georgia
The Georgia Unemployment Benefits Program is managed by the Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL). The GDOL strives to increase the economic oppportunity of all Georgians.
Unemployment provides short-term financial assistance (unemployment insurance) benefits to Georgians that are out of work through no fault of their own.
The purpose of the program is to help bridge the gap between jobs by providing funds to purchase necessities and reduce financial burden.
Georgia Unemployment Insurance allows individuals to search for employment that matches their skills, training and prior earning capability.
Georgia Unemployment during COVID-19
In response to COVID-19, the Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) is temporarily suspending in-person requirements for unemployment.
The GDOL is also providing online access to unemployment services, partial claim access for employers, and other reemployment services. You can submit your employment claim online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
If your employer has temporarily reduced your work hours or there is no work available to you for a short period of time, your employer is required to file a partial claim on your behalf.
If you are having difficulty claiming your weekly benefits, please contact your local career center. Please note that you can file a claim online 24 hours per day.
Coronavirus information for GA Unemployment [Video]
Check out this video from the Georgia Department of Labor. They explain their unemployment services during COVID-19 pandemic and what they are doing to bride the gap.
Am I eligible for Unemployment Benefits in Georgia?
You must meet the following requirements to receive unemployment benefits in Georgia:
- Have a history of wages (insured wages)
- Are unemployed due to no fault of your own
- Are able, available, and actively searching for suitable work
If you meet the qualifications listed above, you may qualify to receive unemployment benefits in Georgia.
To meet the wage requirement for Georgia unemployment, you must have earned enough insured wages during the base period.
What is a base period?
A base period is the first 4 of the past 5 calendar quarters.
Below is a diagram that shows how the GDOL determines a base period.
To meet the wage requirements you must meet all of the items below:
- Must have insured wages in at least two quarters of the base period
- Insured wages must equal at least $1,134 in the two highest quarters in the base period
- Your total insured wages during the base period must equal at least one and one-half times the highest quarter of earnings
Your Reason for Unemployment
The second eligibility requirement is based on the reason you are no longer employed. For verification, information regarding your unemployment is obtained from your most recent employer.
Ability to Work
The third eligibility standard is based on a list of requirements that determines your ability to work.
To be eligible for work in Georgia, you must be:
- Age 18 or older
- A United States citizen, legal permanent resident, or legal non-citizen
- A Georgia resident
To receive benefits, you must also show that you are available and actively searching for work. You must show proof that you are looking for work on a weekly basis. With that said, you are also required to seek and accept all suitable work.
To meet the work availability and search requirements, you must:
- Register for Employment Services through the Employ Georgia website
- Be physically able to perform some type of work – even if it is not in your regular field
- Are available to work with no unreasonable restrictions
- Be actively looking for work by making three new, verifiable job search contacts each week
- Keep a detailed record of your work search to submit to the GDOL on a weekly basis
- Accept all referrals from the GDOL for work
- Accept all offers of suitable work from employers
- Report any failure to seek or accept work to the GDOL
What is suitable work?
The Georgia Department of Labor states that you must be willing to accept work under the same working conditions you were earning wages in. As your time of unemployment increases, you must be willing to accept a lower paying job than your previous.
For example, after ten weeks of unemployment, you must be willing to accept a job that is at least 66% of the highest wage you were previously earning.
If you meet the requirements stated above, please continue reading to find out how to file for unemployment in GA.
How much will I receive in unemployment benefits?
To find out how how you will receive in unemployment benefits, you must calculate your Weekly Benefit Amount (WBA).
How to Calculate your Weekly Benefit Amount
You WBA is calculated by dividing the total of your two highest quarters of wages in the base period by 42.
Currently, the minimum Weekly Benefit Amount payment is $55 and the maximum is $365.
Documents Needed to File for Unemployment in GA
Now that your are ready to file for unemployment in Georgia, you will need to gather some information to complete your claim.
You will need your:
- Social Security Number
- Georgia Driver’s License (if applicable)
- Bank Account and Routing Number (for direct deposit)
- Work history for the last 18 months
How to Apply for Georgia Unemployment Benefits Online
To file your online claim for Georgia unemployment benefits, follow the instructions below.
1. Visit the Georgia DOL Website
2. Click “File for Unemployment Benefits” Link
Once on the website, click the “File Unemployment Benefits” link located at the bottom of the page. For help, please refer to the screenshot below.
Make sure that your pop-up blocker is turned off or the page will not be displayed.
3. Create your Application
When on the page, review the information provided. At the bottom, you will see an area to provide a set of information. Click the checkbox for the Affidavit Acknowledgement. Then, fill in your Social Security Number and PIN if you already have one. If not, set up your PIN. Click “Continue” once complete.
4. Provide your Personal Information
On the next page, complete the requested information. You will be asked to provide:
- First and last name
- Date of Birth
- Work History
- Driver’s License information
When complete, click the “Continue” button.
5. Provide Employment History
Next, you will be asked to provide details on your employment history. Please complete all of the requested information to successfully submit your claim.
6. Record Confirmation Number
Once you have completed and filed your claim for unemployment in GA, you will be sent a confirmation number via email. Be sure to record your confirmation number.
What To do After you File for Unemployment in GA
Once you have successfully submitted your application for unemployment benefits in Georgia, here’s what you should do:
- Download and read the Georgia Department of Labor Unemployment Benefits Handbook
- Monitor the Georgia DOL website, as well as your email and voicemail for messages/updates
- Respond immediately to any requests from the DOL for additional information to avoid delay or denial of benefits
- Check the Georgia My UI portal for your claim status (use instructions below)
Individuals that have filed their own claim for unemployment – allow 5 to 7 days before requesting your weekly payment.
You should have received an email confirming your unemployment claim and providing next steps.
If your employer filed an unemployment claim on your behalf, you do not have to request weekly payments. Payments will automatically be issued within 48 hours from the time your employer submitted their weekly claim.
To check the status of your GA Unemployment Application, continue reading below.
Check the Status of your GA Unemployment Claim
If you want to check the status of your Georgia Unemployment Claim, visit the Georgia My UI online portal. You will be required to login your My UI account to check the status of your application.
For login help, follow the instructions below:
How to Login Georgia My UI Account
- Visit the Georgia My UI website (link here)
- Enter your Social Security Number
- Enter your 4-digit Personal Identification Number (PIN)
- Click the “Login” Button
For help, please refer to the screenshot below.
Georgia Unemployment FAQs
Get answers to the most popular questions about Georgia Unemployment benefits.
What will I receive with my Unemployment Determination?
Your Unemployment Determination document will show:
- Total wages reported in the base period
- Estimated Weekly Benefit Amount
- Potential maximum number of weeks for benefits
- Potential maximum benefit amount that will be paid
- Seasonally adjusted unemployment rate
What do I do if I don’t receive my unemployment determination?
If you do not receive your Georgia unemployment claim determination by the 19th day, contact customer service immediately at 404-232-3001 (metro Atlanta) or 1-877-709-8185.
How long does it take to get Unemployment in Georgia?
You will receive a decision on your Georgia Unemployment application within 21 days of filing.
What do I do to keep receiving unemployment?
According to the Georgia Department of Labor, you must make at least 3 new verifiable job contacts or application per week to continuing receiving benefits.
How do I submit an unemployment appeal in Georgia?
You can submit your Georgia Unemployment determination appeal online at dol.georgia.gov, by email at [email protected], or by fax at 404-232-3901. All appeals must be in writing and filed within 15 days of your determination letter.
Is submitting work search records the same as claiming your weekly benefits?
No, these are not the same. You will receive a confirmation number when you successfully submit your weekly search record search. You will not receive a confirmation when you claim your weekly benefits.
Do I have to report money I earn while receiving unemployment benefits?
Yes, you have to report all money you earn each week (before taxes) while receiving unemployment. This includes part-time and temporary work. Earnings must be reported in the week they are earned, even if you have not yet received them.
What do I do with my unemployment benefits when I return to work?
When you begin working, immediately notify your GDOL career center. Failure to do so may result in having to repay any benefits you received while employed.
Georgia Unemployment Benefits
We hope this guide on how to file for unemployment benefits in GA was helpful to you. If you have additional questions about the Georgia Unemployment Program, please leave those in the comments section below.
In addition, if you have been impacted by COVID-19, be sure to check out our Coronavirus Resources: