California Unemployment Insurance Attorney
Unemployment insurance (UI) is a government program which provides money for employees who become unemployed due to circumstances beyond their control. The funds to finance the UI program are paid by employers. Employees are generally eligible to receive UI benefits unless they quit their employment without good cause or are terminated for misconduct.
The UI program requires employees actively seek employment. Benefits are based on wages earned during a “base period”. The standard base period uses the wages earned during the first four quarters of employment during the last one year and three month period, to determine the benefit award amount. Alternatively, the last four quarters may be used if the applicant does not have sufficient earnings during the past five quarters. Eligibility requires at least $1300 in earnings in one quarter of the base period, or at least $900 earnings in the highest quarter. The quarter in which you earned the most wages determines your weekly payment amounts.
To be eligible for benefits, a person must engage in reasonable efforts to find work that is full-time. You must continue to look for work even after you find part-time work and continue receiving UI benefits.
When you file a claim for UI benefits, a notice is mailed to you with information you provided to EDD for your claim. EDD will then use information to determine the amount of your award. A notice of unemployment insurance award within the mail to you which will state your weekly award the earnings which determined the amount of the award and dates when your claim began and will end.
A notice is also mailed to your last employer when you file a claim for UI benefits the notice provides an opportunity for the employer to dispute information you provided to EDD. An employer has the opportunity to provide a statement to EDD which can prevent an employee from receiving benefits. Many employers dispute that they terminated an employee, instead stating that an employee quit. Such practices are not uncommon and are intended by employers to deprive the terminated employee of benefits. If you are denied unemployment you will have the opportunity to appeal the decision. In many cases, upon your interview by EDD it will be determined by EDD immediately that you qualify for UI benefits. In other cases,EDD may not make such a determination until after they receive information from the employer. At that point EDD will frequently notify you that you have been denied unemployment benefits. If the matter is set for a hearing, after the hearing EDD will send you a notice giving you the results of the hearing. If you lose you will have the right to appeal on the written record.
If you have been denied unemployment insurance or if an employer has provided false information to the EDD, our office may be able to provide assistance. Many employers engage in such practices, maliciously or with the clear intent to hurt the employee. When we analyze a fired employee’s legal rights, we frequently discover that employees have been retaliated against or terminated because they were whistleblowers.Many employers are reluctant to tell EDD the true reasons why employee was terminated. Employers frequently give such reasons are as “the employee was not a good fit”, which is code for “we are afraid to tell you the real reason because we might get sued”. If you have been the victim of an employer sabotaging your ability to collect UI benefits, you should call our office immediately. During the interview process, we may discover that the real reason for termination was retaliation or discrimination, and may discover that you are owed wages and unpaid overtime, were not provided meal and rest periods, were misclassified as an independent contractor, or other illegal acts. Call Labor Law Office, APC today.