Finding Help when Applying for Unemployment Benefits

Finding Help when Applying for Unemployment Benefits

Finding Help With Unemployment Benefits With unemployment at a 16-year-high in 2009, questions about unemployment benefits are on the minds of many Americans. Luckily, there are places to turn for help, including LawHelp and other online resources.

Unemployment insurance is a benefit provided by the state for workers who meet certain eligibility requirements and who are unemployed due to no fault of their own. The specific details of the temporary financial assistance provided are determined by state governments within the guidelines set by federal law.

Presently there are 50 state unemployment insurance programs, with additional programs in the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Figuring out how to obtain benefits isn’t always easy, but there is help available. LawHelp, an online legal information resource, can help locate unemployment insurance information for a user’s state. The site also offers information on how to find free or low-cost local legal help, find a local court, and file paperwork to make claims. LawHelp sites in many states also provide information about job training and placement.

The Federal Department of Labor provides information about unemployment insurance. Information includes: how to file claims; the maximum period for receiving benefits (for most states 26 weeks); and notices of any temporary programs that extend benefits during economic recessions.

NELP, the National Employment Law Project is another resource that provides information on unemployment insurance, including what benefits should be received and how to appeal unemployment claims that have been turned down. They’ve even created a special site for unemployed workers, at http://www.unemployedworkers.org with resources and the latest employment-related news.

I contacted LawHelp in response to the comments they left on my Post about finding Low Cost or Free Legal Services.

This is a guest post by the people at LawHelp is an online resource that helps people find free legal aid programs in their communities, answers to questions about their legal rights, court information, links to social service agencies, and more. LawHelp is a program of Pro Bono Net, a national nonprofit dedicated to increasing access to justice. LawHelp was built and is maintained in partnership with hundreds of legal aid, prob bono and court-based programs across the country.  It was awarded the 2007 Webby Award for Best Law Site.


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