An Urgent Q & A about NJ Unemployment Benefits
Unemployment claims in New Jersey are increasing at an astonishing rate. Around this time, in March of 2019, approximately 10,000 people filed for benefits. One year later, that number has reached over 1 million claims and continues to rise. Businesses are shutting down and workers are being laid off due to the Coronavirus.
The N.J. Department of Labor has increased its system’s capacity after experiencing intermittent shutdowns and outages. Filing has been smooth for many applicants, but others are still having difficulty. Answers may be hard to come by, but we are here to help. Here are the most urgent questions and answers regarding filing for unemployment benefits.
Q: How do I file for unemployment benefits?
A: File online.
Applicants should file online, at nj.gov/labor. Read about the agency’s programs and benefits. Filing for the wrong program will only delay receipt of those benefits. Check out this chart to learn more about different COVID-19 scenarios and the benefits available.
Q: What if I can’t reach a representative?
A: Claims are being backdated.
Long wait times are not getting any shorter these days. If you cannot file online or reach a representative, your claim will be backdated. You will not lose a week of benefits.
Q: When is the best time to file?
A: File after 10PM or before 7AM.
Apply during off hours. Busy times have never been busier. Try first thing in the morning, if you wake up early enough. If not, apply later in the evening. Traffic tends to be lightest after 10 PM, or before 7 AM.
Q: When should I file by?
A: File by midnight on Saturday.
You do not need to file immediately. Saturday at midnight is the cutoff, if you want to receive credit back to the previous Sunday. Do not file, however, if your last day of work was Friday. Wait until next Saturday.
Q: What if I need to reset my pin?
A: Contact the Department of Labor.
Become familiar with their Contact Us form. Click on its drop-down menu and choose “PIN Reset”. A staff member will get back to you as soon as possible.
After filing a claim, you should receive an email with instructions on how and when to claim benefits. If you do not receive it, contact the call center. For more information on the certification process, check here.
The Law Office of H. Benjamin Sharlin LLC
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