Workers who are qualified for unemployment insurance benefits and move to another state are still qualified to collect benefits even after they move. This is because every state participates in the federal Interstate Benefit Payment Plan. However, it is necessary to follow the proper procedures to qualify for benefits and receive payments in a timely manner.
Contact the unemployment office located closest to the new residence. Find out whether an initial claim can be made on the telephone or online, or if an in-person visit is necessary. If it is necessary to visit the office in person, find out what documents are required and whether it is necessary to make an appointment.
Provide the proper documentation to file an initial claim. The agent state (the state which the worker has moved to) can often supply the proper forms. If not, the agent state will collect initial information from the worker and transmit it to the liable state (the state which will actually pay benefits). The liable state will then send the proper forms to the worker at the new address.
File the application with the agent state according to the instructions given. Wait to receive claim forms or instructions on how to file weekly claims by telephone. If no claim forms or instructions have been received after two weeks, inquire with the agent state unemployment office, which will supply claim forms.
File weekly claims with the liable state after serving the "waiting week." After the waiting week, collect unemployment benefits. Continue to seek work and document all work search efforts. If required to provide documentation by the liable state of work search efforts, do so in a timely and thorough manner to the agent state.
Report back to the agent state unemployment office once regular benefits have been exhausted, or the worker returns to work. If the worker has exhausted regular benefits but is still unemployed, the agent state can assist in determining if further benefits are available from the liable state.
- In nearly all instances, documentation from the former job, present address and telephone number, plus identification and a Social Security card will be required to file an interstate claim. If the worker has worked in more than one state, a Combined Wage Claim may be more beneficial. The unemployment office in the agent state can advice the worker of her best option. The liable state will provide the worker with a 1099 form at the end of the tax year to document unemployment benefits.
- Be sure to provide accurate information, especially address and telephone information, to prevent unnecessary delays in collecting benefits. Failure to provide sufficient documentation of work search efforts can result in benefits being suspended indefinitely. Filing a fraudulent Interstate unemployment claim can result in both state and federal criminal charges.