Frequently Asked Questions
When To Contact Us
Q. What should I do if I move?
A. You can change your address and telephone number online by going to www.njuifile.net. You can also report an address change while claiming weekly unemployment benefits by telephone or by mail.
If you are claiming benefits by telephone, you will be asked if you wish to report a change of address. If your address has changed, your call will then be transferred to an agent to process your change of address or you will hear a message with further instructions. If your new address is outside of the area serviced by your assigned office, you may be scheduled for an interview to determine if you were available for work during your move.
If you worked in New Jersey and have relocated to another State, you must file a claim against New Jersey. You may file your claim by calling the New Jersey claims office that handles out-of-state claims at 1-888-795-6672.
If you move out-of state while you are claiming benefits, you should immediately telephone 1-888-795-6672 and select the option to file a claim in order to report the address change. An agent will assist you in claiming benefits against New Jersey on an interstate basis. If you move to a neighboring locality in New York, Pennsylvania or Delaware (within commuting distance of New Jersey), you may change your address by telephoning a New Jersey Reemployment Call Center at the regular telephone numbers.
If you are not claiming benefits, but you move within two (2) years from the date of your claim, you must still notify the agency of your address change. This is important to ensure that you receive any adjustment payments, tax statements, determinations or informational notices that may be mailed to you.
Q. Can I claim back weeks if I did not immediately file a claim when I became unemployed?
A. To be eligible for benefits, you must file a claim. Usually, the claim will be backdated no further than the Sunday of the week you filed. However, there are some circumstances that allow for the backdating of your claim (Examples: you were working reduced hours with your employer; you attempted to file a claim against another state). If you believe your claim should be backdated, mention it to the agent when you file your claim by telephone. If you file your claim via the Internet, you may request your claim be backdated by calling the Reemployment Call Centers (RCC) at: Union City RCC (201) 601-4100, Freehold RCC (732) 761-2020 or Cumberland RCC (856) 507-2340.
Q. I am going to be laid off next week; can I file my unemployment claim now so my claim is ready?
A. No. If you are employed full-time, you cannot file an unemployment claim. Claims filed before separation from employment are not valid because you are considered to be "Employed Full-time." You cannot file an unemployment claim until you become unemployed or partially unemployed.
Q. Does my Pension or Social Security affect my claim?
A. Social Security Retirement benefits do not affect your unemployment benefits.
If you are eligible to receive a pension from an employer that is included on your unemployment claim, the benefits may be reduced. The term "pension" includes benefits paid in a lump sum, such as 401K, as well as pensions that are paid on a monthly basis. If you have applied, received or expect to receive a pension, a claims examiner appointment will be scheduled to discuss the pension. If you contributed the entire cost of your pension, your unemployment benefits will not be reduced. If you and your employer contributed to the pension, 50% of your weekly pension amount will be subtracted from your unemployment benefits. If your employer contributed the entire cost of your pension, your unemployment benefits will be reduced by 100% of your weekly pension amount.
Q. Should I wait until my severance pay ends to file a claim?
A. No, because some severance/separation payments do not extend employment. You should file your claim after you stop working full-time. Payments that do not extend employment include severance payments based on years of service with an employer. However, salary continuation through termination and payments in Lieu of Notice, do extend employment. When you file your claim by telephone, the agent will review all separation payments with you before the claim filing process is completed. If you file your claim via the Internet, and it appears that your payment for periods after your last date of work may affect your unemployment benefits, you will be scheduled for an interview with a claims examiner.
Q. I currently have a H-1 B visa but have lost my job; am I eligible?
A. H-1B visa holders are authorized to work in the United States for one specific employer. If you are permanently separated from that employer and your alien status has not changed, you cannot legally work for another employer and you would be ineligible for benefits. You may be eligible for benefits if you are on a temporary layoff from your employer with a definite return-to-work date.
Q. Will I still receive benefits if my employer files an appeal of my unemployment claim?
A. If you were determined eligible for benefits, you will continue to receive your benefits as long as you meet all other requirements. If the decision is in favor of the employer, you may be required to repay all or part of the unemployment insurance benefits that have been paid to you.
Q. Do I have to accept a job that pays less than I used to earn?
A. While you are collecting unemployment benefits, you are expected to accept suitable work when it is offered or you could be denied benefits for four weeks. Suitable work depends on your work history, salary, skills, commuting distance, etc. If you remain unemployed for an extended period of time, you will be expected to revise your minimum job requirements. You may be required to travel a greater distance, accept a different type of job or accept a lower starting salary.
Q. If an offer of work in the upcoming school year depends on enrollment or funding, am I eligible for unemployment benefits?
A. If an offer of work in the next school year is based on enrollment or funding and you have returned to work in past school years under these conditions, you may not be eligible for benefits during the summer recess. A claims examiner will review the facts of your specific employment to determine eligibility for benefits.
Q. If a company relocates and offers me a job at the new location, do I have to take it?
A. If the distance you have to travel to accept this offer of employment creates an undue hardship or the job duties or hours of work significantly change, then you may be able to refuse the new job and receive benefits. A claims examiner will review your reasons for not relocating and determine if you are eligible.
Q. Can I collect on my original claim if I start a new job and it does not work out?
A. A claims examiner appointment is scheduled if you decide to leave a new job after accepting it. Your reasons for leaving the new job are evaluated to determine if benefits are payable.
Q. Why do I need to prove my identity?
A. Identity theft is the world’s fastest growing crime. For your protection, and for the protection of all New Jersey Unemployment Insurance (UI) claimants, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development (NJLWD) has instituted an "Identity Verification" process.
Q. When will my identity be verified?
A. Your identity will be verified when you file an initial claim for UI benefits and it also may be annually validated during the certification for weekly benefit payment process.
Q. How is my identity proved and validated?
A. You will be asked a series of multiple choice questions obtained from public records that relate to your background to verify and confirm your identity and to reduce the risk of fraud. NJLWD does NOT retain any information that is used to verify your identity.
Q. What if I elect not to participate in identity proofing?
A. If you choose not to participate in the identity verification process, you still will be permitted to continue with the filing of your UI claim or to certify for benefit payments. However, no unemployment insurance benefit payments will be issued until NJLWD confirms that your identity has been properly verified.
Q. What happens if I fail identity proofing or if I elect not to participate?
A. You will be required to report, in-person, to one of NJLWD's designated offices with acceptable documentation to verify your identity. You will receive instructions in the mail explaining this process.
Q. What documentation must I provide to prove my identity?
A. You must provide original or certified copies of your Social Security Card and other documentation that contains your name and current mailing address. (Mail addressed to a Post Office (P.O.) box is not considered acceptable proof of address.) You will receive instructions in the mail that contains a list of acceptable documentation.
Q. How can I prove my identity if I live out-of-state?
A. Non-residents of New Jersey are permitted to fax their proof of identity documents. If you are an out-of-state claimant, you will be mailed instructions explaining what you must do to prove your identity.
Q. To which offices may I report to prove my identity?
A. You may report to one of our designated One-Stop Career Centers to present the documents needed to validate your identity. The link below will take you to a listing of the Unemployment Insurance offices to where you may report. Our offices are open Monday through Friday from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM: http://lwd.dol.state.nj.us/labor/forms_pdfs/ui/ui_office_locations.pdf.
Q. What happens when I run out of regular benefits?
A. If you are eligible for an extension, we will send you a notice of eligibility along with a monetary determination, which provides your benefit detail.
If your claim expires while you are receiving benefits, you may qualify for a new claim. If you do not qualify for a new claim, you will remain entitled to the extensions, as long as you meet the requirements listed for each.
If you exhaust benefits for all of the available extensions, then your only option is to qualify for a new claim.
Q. If there are no more extensions available, how will I know if I qualify for any future extensions?
A. When you exhaust all of your available benefits, if a new extension is established and you are potentially eligible, the Division of Unemployment Insurance will notify you by mail. Please keep us informed of your current address.
Q. I was collecting an extension and I was informed that I qualify for a new claim. The weekly benefit rate is lower than my weekly benefit rate that I was collecting with the extension. Can I continue to collect the extension instead?
A. Federal guidelines require that before extension benefits can be paid an individual cannot have any entitlement to regular benefits, either in New Jersey, any other state or Canada. However, in July 2010, additional Emergency Unemployment Compensation (EUC) legislation was passed that modified this requirement. The new legislation states that if you are collecting EUC benefits on a claim dated July 26, 2009 or later and you become eligible for a new claim with a weekly benefit rate that is $100 or 25% less than what you were collecting, you can remain on EUC at the higher rate until exhaustion of EUC benefits. After exhaustion or the end of the EUC program (whichever comes first), you will be moved to the new claim at the lower rate. If you are eligible for a new claim, and do not meet this Federal requirement, you must collect on the new claim.
Q. Can I apply for an extension before I exhaust my regular benefits?
A. No. As in question 3, if you have a balance of regular benefits remaining in your benefit year, you must exhaust those benefits or have your benefit year expire, prior to having an extension filed.
Q. I am currently collecting UI or EUC and will not qualify for another Tier of EUC benefits. Will the expiration date of the EUC program be expanded?
A. The EUC program expires on December 31, 2013. The last week of eligibility for EUC benefits will be December 28, 2013. The Division of Unemployment Insurance will notify you if new legislation extends the expiration date and you become eligible for additional EUC benefits.
Q. Does refund mean I owe money?
A. Yes. If you receive any unemployment benefits to which you are not entitled, you will be required to return any benefits received. If benefits were paid to you in error, you will receive a notice stating the amount you were overpaid and why you were not entitled to the benefits. You have the right to appeal the determination by following the instructions on the bottom of the form.
Q. Why do I have a refund on my claim when I filed only last week?
A. If, in the past, you received any unemployment benefits to which you were not entitled, the Division may recover the overpaid unemployment benefits by using your current benefits. If you did receive any unemployment benefits to which you were not entitled, you should have received a determination stating the reason and the amount you were overpaid.
Q. If I owe a refund, can I make an electronic payment?
A. Yes. You can make an electronic payment at https://www1.state.nj.us/TYTR_LBR_Claims/jsp/Login.jsp. The E-payment service allows for both credit card and e-check payments. Individual and recurring payments are also available.
Q. How do I avoid collection activity against me?
A. You can avoid collection activities (except for the recoupment of future benefits) by either repaying the debt in full or establishing and maintaining a monthly installment agreement. The BPC-404 monthly mailer lists the formal dollar amount required to pay on a monthly basis and also allows for the submission of a formal monthly agreement with your restitution payment. You can also enter your formal monthly agreement amount at our E-payment site at https://www1.state.nj.us/TYTR_LBR_Claims/jsp/Login.jsp.
Q. What should I do if I forget to claim my benefits on the assigned day?
A. If you miss your assigned date, you should claim your benefits on the Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday immediately following your assigned date. You should claim your benefits during the week in which your assigned date occurs or benefits could be delayed or denied.
Q. How long does it take after I claim my benefits by using the telephone or the Internet to receive a payment to my direct deposit account or prepaid debit card?
A. If you are entitled to a benefit payment, it will be posted to your direct deposit account or prepaid debit card within 48 hours after you claim your benefits by using the Internet or the telephone. For example, if you certify over the Internet on Sunday, you will receive your benefits by Tuesday.
Q. How can I find out the balance of my UI claim and the tax amount that was withheld year to date without calling the Reemployment Call Center?
A. If you certified for your benefits online at www.njuifile.net you will receive a confirmation screen after the payment process. The confirmation screen provides the gross and net amount of your payment, the amount deducted for any refunds or garnishments, tax withheld on your payment, and tax withheld year to date. It will also give the remaining balance on your claim.
Q. Are benefits taxable and how can I have federal income taxes withheld from my unemployment benefits?
A. Unemployment benefits are subject to federal income taxes. You may voluntarily choose to have 10% of your weekly unemployment benefits withheld and sent to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). If you want this service, you can request it when filing your initial claim. You may select or change your withholding status at any time by writing to the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Unemployment Insurance, PO Box 908, Trenton, NJ 08625-0908. Click here for the "Request for Change in Withholding Status" form.
Q. When do you provide yearly Income Tax information?
A. Form 1099-G, Income Tax Statement, showing the amount of Unemployment Benefits paid and amount of Federal taxes withheld, is made available during the month of January that follows the calendar year in which benefits were paid. You may obtain a copy of your 1099-G Income Tax Statement by going to our website at www.njuifile.net and selecting the 1099 Inquiry section where you will be able to view and print a copy of your income tax statement. You will need your Personal Identification Number (PIN) to access this information. It is not necessary to include a copy of Form 1099-G with your income tax return as the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development has already reported the information to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
Q. What if I cannot access the Self Service system to obtain my Form 1099-G or want to request a duplicate copy?
A. You may contact your Reemployment Call Center (RCC) to request a copy. Copies are only printed on the weekends. So, the form should be received the week after you make the request.
Q. What if the amounts on the 1099-G form are not correct?
A. A 1099-G specialist in the Division of Unemployment Insurance can review with you the payments made in the tax year. If the amount is incorrect, the specialist will request that a corrected 1099-G be prepared. If the amount is correct and you still disagree with the amount, an additional review will be conducted.
Q. How can I find out the balance of my UI claim and the tax amount that was withheld without calling the Reemployment Call Center?
A. If you claimed your benefits online at www.njuifile.net you will receive a confirmation screen after the payment process. The confirmation screen provides the gross and net amount of your payment, the amount deducted for any refunds or garnishments, tax withheld on your payment, and tax withheld year to date. It will also give the remaining balance on your claim. You may also obtain information about your claim by visiting our website at www.njuifile.net and utilizing the Claim Inquiry section of the Unemployment Insurance Self-Service applications that can provide you with comprehensive information about your unemployment insurance claim.
Q. What should I do if I cannot keep my appointment?
A. You must telephone your Reemployment Call Center as soon as possible after the missed appointment. If you know in advance that you will be unable to attend an interview, you may telephone your Reemployment Call Center prior to the appointment and reschedule the appointment. You will be scheduled for a claims examiner interview to determine why you had to reschedule your initial appointment.
Q. What should I do when my disqualification period is over?
A. When your disqualification period is over, you should call the Reemployment Call Center to reopen your claim.
Q. I have a telephone hearing scheduled. What do I need to do?
A. You must call the number on the hearing notice 1/2 hour before the time of the hearing. The Appeal Tribunal does not call you for a hearing unless you call in first and initiate the hearing request.
Q. I missed my hearing. What can I do to reschedule?
A. You must request a new hearing in writing. Be sure to include your docket or social security number. Requests to reopen can be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org, faxed to (609) 292-2438, or mailed to PO Box 936, Trenton, NJ 08625-0936.
Q. If an AT decision is not in my favor, what can I do?
A. If you disagree with the decision, you may file an appeal to the Board of Review. Instructions can be located at the end of your Appeal Tribunal decision. They are in bold print.
Q. What happens if an AT decision is in my favor?
A. If the Appeal Tribunal's decision is in your favor, the Division of Unemployment Insurance will issue any payments due. The Appeal Tribunal does not issue payments. Once the decision is made by the Appeal Tribunal, the case is closed and no further action is taken by the Appeal Tribunal.
Q. How long will I have to wait from when I file my appeal to when I have a hearing?
A. Appeals are scheduled in the order they are received, with the oldest appeals being scheduled first. The time you have to wait will depend on the Appeal Tribunal backlog. You will be notified through the mail when your hearing is scheduled.
Q. My address changed after I filed my appeal. What should I do?
A. You must notify both the Appeal Tribunal and the Division of Unemployment Insurance (UI) by e-mail, fax or mail. The Appeal Tribunal will not have your address change if you just notify the Division of Unemployment Insurance.