Unemployment Compensation in New York

Unemployment compensation in New York will be of interest to you if you live and work in New York. This is especially true if you have been forced to quit, unfairly terminated or laid off. You or a friend or loved one may be in a dispute over unemployment compensation benefits at the present time. 

In order to understand unemployment compensation, you need to remember what unemployment insurance is. Unemployment Insurance (UI) is the employer-paid insurance program that provides benefits to you in the form of unemployment compensation if you become unemployed through no fault of your own. Unemployment compensation is temporary financial help that you have to qualify for. These benefits are paid while you look for work. Your previous earnings determine what your amount will be. The Unemployment Trust Fund is supported by Reimbursements and employer taxes.  No money can be deducted from your paycheck by your Employer to pay for this program. 

The purpose of unemployment compensation is to help able-bodied workers who become involuntarily unemployed to provide a minimal livelihood during this period of time. It is designed to last a worker is back at work. 

Wisconsin signed the first unemployment compensation law in 1932. The Social Security Act of 1935 was the first national law. It contained unemployment compensation provisions, along with other welfare programs. Through the years, the act has been amended many times. By 1994, unemployed insurance coverage applied to more than 96% of all workers. All of the states in the United States have their own unemployment insurance laws that are in accordance with federal guidelines. Each state administers its own unemployment compensation program. 

The State of New York followed suit with the Social Security Act by enacting its unemployment compensation law, also in 1935. The law regarding unemployment compensation in New York has been amended and reformed many, many times since its passage in 1935. 

Issues regarding labor and employment in New York are under the New York State Department of Labor. For example, the issue of health and safety in the workplace is governed by the Division of Safety & Health. The workers’ compensation program is administered by the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board. 

The New York State Department of Labor is also who is over unemployment compensation. Specifically, it is the Unemployment Insurance Division that administers unemployment compensation in New York. 

New York’s view of unemployment compensation is that it is temporary income for eligible workers who become unemployed through no fault of their own. It is for those who are ready, willing and able to work. The New York State Department of Labor and each of the other state’s unemployment offices administer its own unemployment insurance program within Federal guidelines. 

What you receive in unemployment benefits in New York will be different from what you would receive in other states. The reason for this is that each state unemployment office uses its own limits and formulas to calculate the amount of unemployment compensation that you will get. The length of time that you get unemployment benefits in New York may also be different from that of other states. 

In order to qualify to get unemployment compensation in New York, you must meet the eligibility requirements for what is called the “base period”. If you meet the requirements of the base period, it will be used to establish your claim. 

To meet the requirements of the base period, you have to have been paid wages in at least two calendar quarters. You must have been paid at least $1600 in wages in one of those two calendar quarters. You also have to have total wages in your base period that are one and one-half times your high quarter wages. 

Another requirement for receiving unemployment compensation in New York is that you lost your job through no fault of your own. You may be denied benefits if: 

  • You were fired because your employer alleged that you violated a company rule, procedure or policy like absenteeism or insubordination, because of a dispute or disagreement with a co-worker or boss, or you were fired for any other reason.
  • You quit your job.
  • You are unemployed because of a work stoppage in the last 49 days which was conducted in violation of an existing collective bargaining agreement in the place in which you were employed. You may be denied even if you are not actually participating in the strike, but only that you are not working because of the strike in the facility where you worked. 

As mentioned earlier, you must also be willing, able and ready to work in order to get unemployment compensation in New York. You also have to be actively seeking work. 

If you believe that you meet these eligibility requirements for receiving unemployment compensation in New York, you should file for these benefits. You can file for benefits either by phone or online. 

If you application for unemployment compensation benefits is denied, you have the right to file an appeal. The first step in the appeal process in New York is a hearing before an impartial administrative law judge. This judge is under the jurisdiction of the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board. If the administrative law judge denies your appeal, you can appeal the decision with the Unemployment Insurance Appeal Board. If the decision of the Appeal Board is not in your favor, you can appeal to the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court, Third Judicial Department, and from there to the New York State Court of Appeals.

If you or a friend or loved one has been denied unemployment compensation in New York, as you can see from the appeal process, you are probably going to need the help of a legal professional in order to get the benefits that you are entitled to. You are probably going to need the help of an employment attorney.

This is what employment attorneys do. They specialize in cases dealing with employment issues like unemployment compensation. These are the kind of cases they work with each and every day. An experienced New York employment attorney will probably be able to help you get your unemployment compensation benefits.

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