Job & Family Services Unemployment Compensation FAQ's
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Unemployment Compensation FAQ's
    What is the weekly benefit amount?
 
 

The weekly benefit amount is the payment you may receive for one week of total employment. If you are partially unemployed (in other words, if you are receiving wages less than your weekly benefit amount), or if you are being paid certain types of income, the weekly benefit amount may be reduced.

To determine the weekly benefit amount, follow these steps:

Step 1: Compute the average weekly wage by dividing the total wages for all qualifying weeks in the base period by the total number of such qualifying weeks. Example: If you had $32,000 in total wages and 32 qualifying weeks, then $32,000 divided by 32 equals $1,000 average weekly wage.

Step 2: Computer 50 percent (half) of your average weekly wage during the base period. Example: If your average weekly wage is $1,000, then 50 percent of that is $500.

Step 3: Determine the number of allowable dependents and apply the maximums for each dependency classification. The 2014 maximums for each dependency classification are given in the following table:

 
 
Number of Allowable
Dependents
Dependency
Classification
If your Average
Weekly Wage was:
Then your Maximum
Weekly Payment is:
0 A $836 or higher $418
1 or 2 B $1,014 or higher $507
3 or more C $1,128 or higher $564

Example: Average weekly wage is $1,000, and 50 percent is $500. Compare $500 to the maximum weekly payment for the number of allowable dependents, as follows: If you have no dependents, the weekly benefit amount would be the maximum weekly payment for 0 dependents (Class A) of $418. However, if you have 1 or 2 dependents (Class B) or 3 or more dependents (Class C), the weekly benefit amount would be $500 (because 50 percent of the average weekly wage is less than the maximum payable).

 
    How long may an applicant receive benefits?
 
 

After the weekly benefit amount is computed, ODJFS determines the total benefits payable. This is the total amount of money that will be set aside in your account for you to receive during the benefit year. Each time you are paid, the amount paid to you is subtracted from your total benefits payable.

The total benefits payable is determined by multiplying your weekly benefit amount (WBA) by the number of qualifying weeks in your base period. This table demonstrates how the number of qualifying weeks affects your total benefits.

Qualifying Weeks Total Benefits Payable

20

20 x WBA

21

21 x WBA

22

22 x WBA

23

23 x WBA

24

24 x WBA

25

25 x WBA

26 or more

26 x WBA

Note: You must have at least 20 qualifying weeks to be eligible to receive unemployment benefits.

 
 
    What is the total amount of unemployment benefits an applicant may receive?
 
 

The total benefits payable is determined by multiplying your weekly benefit amount (WBA) by the number of qualifying weeks in your base period.

Example 1: If you have 20 qualifying weeks in your base period and a weekly benefit amount of $200, you will have total benefits payable of $4,000 (20 x $200 = $4,000).

In this example, if you remain totally unemployed, your benefits will run out after 20 weeks if full weekly benefits are paid. However, if your weekly benefit amount is reduced by earnings or other types of income, your benefits will run out at a slower rate. They may continue for more than 20 weeks - until your benefits run out or your benefit year ends, whichever occurs first.

Example 2: If you have 52 qualifying weeks in your base period and a weekly benefit amount of $200, you will have total benefits payable of $5,200 (26 x $200 = $5,200).