FEDERAL FINANCIAL RELIEF Lindsey Lowe
Florida has a labor force of roughly 10 million. Unfortunately, not all employable individuals are with jobs. The State of Florida unemployment rate varies all-year long. The unemployment FL number slows down during the start of the third quarter and picks up at the start of the fourth quarter.
The Florida unemployment rate 2018 has improved with a recorded rate of unemployment of 3.8 percent, lower than the 4.5 percent recorded in 2017. The government is continuously working on improving the Florida employment rate.
Fortunately, the State of Florida provides benefits for its unemployed citizens with the Reemployment Assistance Program at the helm.
This office, once named as the Unemployment Compensation Program is under the umbrella of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO). The program helps stabilize Florida’s economy by helping the jobless to cut down the unemployment rate Florida figures.
The Florida Reemployment Assistance Program provides a wide range of benefits. For example, those who are jobless through no fault of their own can receive temporary as well as partial wage replacement as long as they are qualified.
Filing for unemployment in Florida comes without any cost to the worker. The assistance program is financed by employers who pay payroll taxes.
But just how FL define joblessness? What is the process of filing unemployment in Florida? For how long can you receive unemployment? How much does Florida unemployment pay to its jobless workers? What other programs can help the unemployed Floridians?
These are some of the frequently asked questions regarding the Florida unemployment application.
There are three requirements one has to meet to qualify for the Florida reemployment assistance.
First, the individual must be available, able and actively searching for a job. Second, the person should have lost his or her job through no fault of his or her. And third, one should have earned sufficient wages during the base period.
If a person meets the collected unemployment definition, then he or she can proceed to apply for the unemployment Florida program
One, however, must begin filing for unemployment Florida claims within the first week after losing the job to ensure that the Florida unemployment amount are received in a timely manner. Filing the claims is relatively easy as one only has to access the connect.myflorida.com login.
Claimants must determine the claim weeks FL unemployment they are entitled to, keeping in mind that the max unemployment benefits one can receive are capped at $275 per week. The max.unemployment time for claiming is 26 weeks.
Applicants should also have earned at least $3400 in the base period at the time of claiming Florida unemployment benefits. Those whose highest quarter earnings are higher than 1.5x their entire base period earnings, unfortunately, cannot qualify for the Florida unemployment compensation.
Determining one’s unemployment payments Florida benefit, fortunately, is made easy with the Florida unemployment benefits calculator.
Normally, claimants of unemployment benefits Florida will need to wait roughly three to four weeks for the initial payment. One can receive benefits ranging from 12 to 23 weeks. The max unemployment in Florida where a worker can collect benefits is contingent on the present Florida employment rate. One can check the present rate of unemployment in Florida by visiting Florida unemployment.gov site
Getting these benefits is relatively easy as claimants can receive the funds electorally using their debit cards. The benefits can also be deposited straight into the claimants’ bank accounts.
It’s not enough to be unemployed as workers also have to be actively searching for jobs. The job search efforts must be documented and reported properly before collecting the benefits.
Those applying for the fla unemployment benefits must be registered in the reemployment Florida.Connect prior to claiming any unemployment benefits.
Recipients of the benefits could lose the benefits if they turn down a suitable job offer. Similarly, one should also report to the Reemployment Assistance Program Florida immediately once they are employed again.
There are cases when one’s application for unemployment benefits is denied. When this happens, applicants have the option of filing for an appeal either by mail, fax or online. Those filing for an appeal have 20 days from the time they have been notified of their Florida unemployment status of benefits.
The reemployment FL Connect will then schedule a telephone hearing after receiving the filed appeal. An appeals referee will be the one to decide on the case, and the appellant will receive the decision via mail
To make this guide easier, readers are encouraged to familiarize themselves with the following terms regarding unemployment Florida rates and benefits:
Not all unemployed can qualify for the Florida Unemployment Insurance or FL UI. Applicants must meet the following criteria to receive benefits.
Applicants who are unsure if they meet the above criteria or have other pertinent questions regarding unemployment insurance benefits can get in touch with the Florida One-Stop-Shop Career Centers.
There are other factors affecting one’s eligibility for unemployment benefits Florida such as when the applicant lost the last job as well as the timing of the filing of the claims.
Below are guidelines that claimants of Florida unemployment benefits should keep in mind.
Those who would like to apply for unemployment Florida benefits should prove that the reasons for leaving their previous job are through no fault theirs. As such, the following reasons for job separation may render an applicant ineligible:
Applicants must keep in mind that the Connect Florida Department Economic Opportunity Office will get in touch with the previous employers to investigate if the information provided by the applicants are correct. Employers, after all, receive notifications and are required to log-on to https //employers.connect.myflorida.com.
An applicant will be deemed as eligible for unemployment benefits if the office can validate that the applicant lost the previous job through no fault of his or hers.
Employers who are looking for guidelines after receiving notifications for information verification can get the guide through this link: www.floridajobs.org/unemployment/connect/external guide employer.pdf
A claimant should have all their requirements ready before filing. It is important, after all, to have all pertinent information supporting one’s claim on being unemployed.
The following requirements should be ready before registering at the unemployment login FL.
Applicants who want to start receiving their unemployment benefits as soon as possible should begin claiming within seven days after losing their jobs. When a person can start receiving claims depends on the date when the application was completed. Keep in mind that claims always start on the Sunday before the day when the applicant completed the entire application.
All FL unemployment benefits should be filed and completed electronically via the my connect Florida website. Applicants should make sure that they are logging on to the correct UI site. For Floridians, they should login to my connect Florida instead of logging in to other states’ UI sites such as MA dept of unemployment login.
The online application is easy as one simply needs to login to the FloridaConnect site. Applicants should register and find the “my Florida unemployment” to know the status of the claims and other pertinent information.
The application process in FL Connect roughly takes around half an hour to an hour to complete. All applications, however, must be completed within the next three days or 72 hours from the start of the application or else claimants will have to start from scratch again.
Those in need of help in processing their application or has no access to a computer for filling up the online application can proceed to any One-Stop Career Centers for help. These centers are located in different parts of the state and applicants should go to the office nearest them.
For example, those living in Jackson can get in touch with the unemployment office in Jacksonville FL. Workers can also call the Florida reemployment phone number to find the nearest One-Stop Career Centers.
Applications should ensure that they provide accurate and true information. According to the unemployment FL laws, the state can deny applications with false or incorrect information.
Similarly, the law says that those caught falsifying information could be sued by the state and could be sanctioned with jail time, fines and disqualified from receiving any state benefits in the future. Falsification of records, after all, is deemed as a felony and as such will invalidate the applicant’s Florida unemployment claim status.
The Reemployment Florida Connect will send a notification to the applicant’s email after the final submission of the claim. Those who failed to receive a notice should get in touch with the claims Florida unemployment connect office.
Aside from the confirmation notice, applicants will also receive information regarding participation in the Initial Skills Review. This test is aimed at deterring a comprehensive inventory of the applicant’s job strengths and weaknesses. The One-Stop Career Center uses the skills review to help claimants in their search for new employers. The Initial Skills Review is required for all claimants.
Applicants should expect to go through the “waiting week” phase
Florida State requires applicants to go through a phase where they will not be receiving any benefits after the claim has been completed and accepted. This phase is referred to as the “waiting week”.
For how long unemployment claimants can receive unemployment benefits? The duration ranges from 12 to 23 weeks. The duration when one can continue receiving benefits depends on Florida states present unemployment rate as this affects unemployment payments Florida rates.
The amount of support for each claimant will vary as the benefits are dependent earnings from each applicant’s base period and how much is Florida unemployment at present.
The base period is based on the first four finished quarters in the last year and a half or 18 months.
At present, Florida pays its unemployed citizens by dividing the claimant’s wages using the figure in the highest base period quarter by 26. A claimant can receive as much as $275 weekly, the unemployment maximum benefits in the state.
Currently, there are no extensions for receiving these benefits. There is no Florida unemployment extension 2017 program as extension payments ceased in 2012.
For how long do you have to work to get unemployment in Florida? It’s not so much on the length of work but rather on earnings. Applicants must have earned at least $3400 during the base period of their unemployment benefits claim. Plus, one’s largest quarter earnings should not exceed more than 1.5 X of the whole base period earnings.
The beneficiary of the unemployed claims will lose the benefits once hired for a full-time job so that the state can improve the FL unemployment number.
The same cannot be said for those who are hired as part-timers as they could still enjoy some of the benefits. The wages for the part-time job a beneficiary receives will be used in determining how much of the unemployment benefits they are still entitled to.
For example, a person earning $60 from their part-time jobs will see a deduction for the same amount from their weekly benefit claim. Other income such as gratuities and tips should also be reported for every week that they are earned.
There is no need to do a manual computation to determine the unemployment payrate benefit one can and should receive. There’s the Florida Unemployment Calculator to make the calculation much easier that can be used.
Those claiming their fluidnow claim weeks benefit should file their claims every two weeks that they are unemployed.
Claimants will receive an information notice containing specific instructions within 18 days after filing their claims.
Claimants also have 14 days from their claim date to get their weeks of unemployment benefits as the disbursements of the cash benefit is not automatic. This means that claimants should be proactive in getting their benefits within the allotted time. Those who fail to get their collected unemployment benefits promptly could be denied from receiving them.
Claimants are required to report any job completed as well as the wages earned when claiming the benefits even if the earnings from the jobs yet have to be paid.
Beneficiaries must also keep in mind that their reporting dates could be changed after receiving their first payments. Reporting dates are determined using the beneficiary’s last four digits of their Social Security Numbers.
One of the most commonly asked questions on Florida unemployment jobs search is whether claimants should continue their job search while receiving unemployment benefits. The answer is yes as all job hunting efforts of the beneficiary must be reported to the Florida DEO connect.
Claimants must first register at the Employ Florida Marketplace weeks before claiming weeks of unemployment. One should keep in mind that there is a maximum unemployment length that can receive support.
There are however exemptions from this rule. The following are not required to register to the connect FL jobs:
The UI referred by status Florida rules state that claimants should reach out to at least five potential employers per week to keep receiving unemployment benefits.
Claimants should maintain records of their employment search efforts. Records should contain information such as a list of the employers they contacted, the results of the conversation and the employers’ contact information.
Beneficiaries of the program are required to meet with someone from the One-Stop Career Center. However, in many cases, the meeting may be substituted for meeting the minimum contact requirements.
Those who have received a suitable job offer but refused the job could lose their unemployment benefits. Beneficiaries are also required to report to the Reemployment program once they start a new job.
Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity via the Reemployment Assistance Program does not only provide monetary benefits but also helps the unemployed find new jobs. Claimants will be receiving help with career and job planning. Similarly, the department also has various job programs for senior citizens, veterans, and military spouses.
Specifically, the Reemployment Assistance Program provides the following services
Those who want to know more about these programs can call the unemployment phone number FL to inquire.
Claimants have the option to have their benefits paid out electronically via debit cards. There is no need to worry about how long does it take to get unemployment money on debit cards. Many benefits recipients choose this alternative method as the funds are automatically deposited straight into their personal debit card accounts.
What makes debit cards a convenient option is that these cards can be utilized at any service or merchants that accept debit cards.
The debit card option also means minimizing the waiting time for the check to get in the mail as well as the possibilities of identity theft and mail fraud. The Federal Deposit Insurance Company also insures the deposits. The funds are also accessible round the clock.
There is also the option of having the benefit claims deposited directly into bank accounts. For example, some beneficiaries have enrolled in the Florida unemployment direct deposit time 2017 to get their benefits directly into their accounts.
There are various reasons why some claimants are denied benefits such as incomplete paperwork, failure to provide application requirements on time, being disqualified for getting fired from previous work or insufficient wages during the base period.
Those who are denied from getting Florida unemployment claims should not lose hope as they can file an appeal. Denied applicants have 20 days from the day they received the determination notice. Filing appeals can be done either by mail, fax or online. Those who have queries about the appeal process can call for clarification easily as the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity phone numbers are published online.
Appealing applicants can expect the agency to schedule a telephone hearing where a referee will decide on the case. The decision of the referee will then be mailed to the applicant.
Applicants who disagree with the referee’s decision can appeal again this time at the Unemployment Appeals Commission within 20 days after receiving the notice of the referee’s decision. It will be the commissioners who will evaluate the information and issue another decision on the case.
If the appeal with the Unemployment Appeals Commission is denied, then applicants can make another appeal to the Florida District Court Appeals.
Beneficiaries who receive more than the amount they are entitled to whether with or without their knowledge will be receiving overpayments. Those who knowingly receive an amount higher than what they’re supposed to be receiving might be labeled as a fraudulent claimant.
An overpayment in itself is not a fraudulent transaction as overpayments in Florida happen due to miscalculation, oversight, or plain misunderstanding in the calculation of the benefit amounts. Technical errors, court decisions or RAAC resulting in redistribution may end up as a non-fraud overpayment.
When overpayments happen, recipients should expect a notice from the concerned department asking them to pay back the overpaid amount. After receiving the notice, claimants should make the needed arrangements to give back the specified amount.
There are several ways to return excess amounts.
Aside from intentionally failing to report overpayments of the benefit, one also can be sued for fraud by the State of Florida for the following reasons:
Those caught committing fraud in claiming unemployment benefits could face the following sanctions or penalties.
Benefits including unemployment benefits are taxable income. Beneficiaries have the option to withhold 10 percent of their weekly monetary benefits due to the Internal Revenue Services (IRS). This can be done after logging into the Connect and clicking on “View and Maintain Account Information” and choosing “Payment Method and Tax Withholding Options.”
Claimants should ensure that they logon to the State of Florida’s page rather than access other states’ pages like the unemployment Texas benefits logon or Georgia’s benefits log-in page.
The department issues the Florida unemployment tax form 1099-G every January to file the taxes of those receiving UI. This form lists the amount of benefits one received during the specified year and any amount withheld and paid to the IRS. The 1099-G is available by January 31 for the previous tax year.
In cases of overpayment of benefits, the 49T is the receipt of the repayment. This form indicates the amount paid to the Reemployment Assistance Overpayment for the specific tax year.
The quickest way to access the Florida unemployment W2 including the 49T and 1099-G form is by choosing “electronic” as the correspondence method. Simply go to the Unemployment connect login page and select “My 1099-G/49T” to access the 1099-G and/or 49T documents for the last five years.
Those who opted for mail as their correspondence type will receive a copy of these forms before January 31 to the address on record. Thus, one should ensure that the address in Connect is updated. The United States Postal Service will forward the mail for those with mail forwarding.
Claimants can also ask for a copy of the 1099-G form by sending an email to [email protected]. The email request should include the full name, current and previous address on record, last four digits of the Social Security Number, valid contact number and the tax year of the form being requested.
Those who need assistance with the forms can get in touch with the department as agents will be able to help.
An applicant can cancel claims if no monetary benefits were received yet and as long as the cancellation is within 20 days from the time that the claim was determined. Those who would like to cancel their claims should keep in mind that the claim cannot be reinstated after cancellation.
Cancellation of the claims is a simple process as it only requires either faxing or writing a letter to the DEO.
The My Connect site of Florida is easy to navigate. However, there are times when users experience some technical issues. Below are some of the technical concerns in navigating the site with the corresponding solutions.
A personal identification number or PIN is required when registering to the Connect login unemployment page.
Those who have forgotten the PIN of theirFlorida unemployment benefits login can select the “Forgot Pin” option in the site to reset their PIN after providing other information to validate their information. If one still cannot reset the PIN online, then it’s best to get in touch with the agency by calling the Florida unemployment contact number.
The agency may ask claimants to submit documents to verify their identity including a signed copy of the Social Security card and a copy of either the State ID or valid driver’s license, It will take around three working days to review the documents submitted.
The PIN of the unemployment login FL should meet the following criteria
To avoid receiving technical errors when accessing the deo.myflorida.com login, users should keep in mind the following
Those who continue to experience technical errors with reemployment Florida login can get in touch with the agency.
Some users may experience problems in accessing documents attachment. To avoid such problems, the following must be followed:
Those who would like to change their correspondence type can simply do so by doing the following after reaching the connect.myflorida.com login.
There are other programs aside from the Florida re employment assistance program that can aid unemployed Floridians. The unemployed, however, have to file for these benefits separately.
Just because one has already received benefits from one unemployment benefit programs does not mean he or she can no longer apply for another.
Below are other benefit programs that unemployed Floridians can avail of.
The Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program or LIHEAP is financed by the Federal Government of the United States. LIHEAP aids in paying for one month worth of home power costs for households earning a low income.
One can avail of this benefit as much as three times annually. Funds are given straight to the power distribution company rather than the household.
LIHEAP is under the jurisdiction of the Department of Economic Opportunity, which handles the following tasks for the program.
Anyone whose total household income is equal to or lesser than the household limits defined by the program.
For example, a household consisting of one individual should have an income of equal or lesser than $18,735. Or a home consisting of eight should have earnings of not greater than $65,145.
The Community Services Block Grant Program aims to aid low-income earning homes to become more self-sufficient.
Non-profit agencies and local governments also referred to as Community Action Agencies handle the distribution of the funds, which are spent on anti-poverty programs. These would include provisions for food, daycare, emergency health care, housing, transportation assistance, home finance management, nutrition programs, and job counseling, among others.
The CDBG is under the umbrella of the Department of Economic Opportunity mainly by handling three programs in Florida, namely, Office of Disaster Recovery, Florida Small Cities Community Development Block Grant Program, and Neighborhood Stabilization Program.
The Office of Disaster Recovery is aimed at rebuilding communities and considered a disaster-stricken area as chosen by the President of the United States.
The Neighborhood Stabilization program was designed to help stabilize communities that have suffered losses due to abandonment and foreclosures.
The Florida Small Cities CDBG is a grant program that provides funds to eligible villages, towns, counties, and cities. The funds provided will be used for economic development, neighborhood revitalization, housing rehabilitation, and commercial revitalization.
One of the sub-projects under the CDBG also includes economic development activities that generate jobs for both low and moderate-income workers.
What does FL do for affected workers by major calamities or disasters? The state also provides unemployment benefits for these difficult times.
The Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) is aimed at helping individuals who have lost their jobs due to a major disaster and are not qualified for the regular Florida State reemployment assistance benefits.
The DUA provides for those who are self-employed, and farm, ranch, and fisheries workers. Other individuals ineligible for the regular unemployment benefits are also covered by the program.
The DUA is activated by the United States President following a major disaster. Upon the signing of the official declaration, the Department of Eco (DEO) will officially announce the program’s availability.
Applicants must file their claims for the program within 30 days from the time of the official announcement of the DEO. One can claim benefits for up to 26 weeks. Those affected by the major disaster can call the DEO Florida phone number to ask about the implementation of the DUA.
Those who are eligible for the regular unemployment payment Florida benefit should exhaust that benefit prior to claiming for DUA.
Under DUA rules, an unemployed worker is an individual who either was scheduled to start work or who worked in the disaster-declared area when the major disaster happened and whose primary source of earning and livelihood depends on the worker’s job for wages.
Applicants must be able and are available for employment to qualify for DUA benefits. However, individuals who become unable to work due to injuries sustained as a result of the major disaster are exempted from this rule.
After the DUA is declared and becomes available, residents will be asked about the possible effects of the recent disaster upon filing for the regular connect Florida reemployment program.
Claims for DUA can also be filed in the Connect site or by calling the UI Florida phone number.
The following are the requirements for filing claims for DUA:
For the self-employed who are applying for DUA must provide proof of their self-employment that was directly impacted by the disaster. These would include but not limited to
Those whose partial or complete unemployment is no longer due to the impact of the major disaster will no longer be ineligible for DUA. Likewise, a person who resumes work or self-employment can no longer be eligible for the program.
DUA cannot be used together with the fluidnow claim weeks Florida for the same week of being unemployed. Similarly, it cannot be used in the waiting week period for the regular unemployment benefits under the laws of the State of Florida.
The Weatherization Assistance Program is funded by the federal government. The goal of the programs is to aid with the power costs of low-income earning households.
Rather than pay for electricity costs directly, low-earning homes get to save on their power consumption through application of solar reflective coatings, installation of solar screens, improvement of ventilation and insulation, and repairs or replacement of inefficient heating and cooling equipment.
Thus, the Weatherization Assistance Program aids households to save on power costs, which is truly beneficial to those who are currently unemployed and want to cut household bills.
To inquire about the Weatherization Assistance Programs, one must simply find the county where they reside and get in touch with the local agency handling the program. The applications are not available online.
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