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What You Need to Know to Collect Unemployment Benefits is How You Win Unemployment Appeal Hearings

Can I collect unemployment IF.  It's a big if to ask, because employees do..

  • quit their jobs with good cause, only to find out they can't meet unemployment appeal hearings burden of proof .. to prove that as fact.
  • get fired for something other than misconduct, only to realize after the fact, it's employers with loads of hearing experience to overcome their burden with documentation .. which employees often ignore at the time, to not take the opportunity to counter document for the sake of rebuttal arguments, on written verbal warnings, written warnings and final written warnings, while still the employee.   

Employees also get laid off for a legitimate lack of work reason, only to realize later at a hearing they don't know how to rebut, or prove facts about the cause for separation, and why they refused an offer of continuing work, presumed suitable per specific criteria affecting what makes a job suitable work for an individual.

And then we have our own conditional and continuing unemployment eligibility issues to consider if we make it over the initial adjudication hurdle and the ensuing appeal process if the aggrieved party to a claim determination.

  • Basic requirement for anyone to collect regular unemployment insurance benefits. is to be able and available to search for and accept suitable work while collecting benefits.
  • Report any earned wages while collecting, in the week earned, not paid, so it can be known how much if any those wages can reduce a total benefit amount to a partial unemployment benefit.

Your unemployment eligibility from start to finish can be affected by a what is, a relative small number of issues raised in unemployment laws .. and those free interpretive resources.

But what relevant means to me is to find within yourself the objectivity you need to know how to fight for, or against, the burden of proof assigned to the moving party, because what "through no fault of your own really means .. is the fault for the cause of any type of separation from at-will employment .. was the employer's fault.

To what I hope is a more favorable end for you, I offer a number of basic free articles I think of as essential to finding a reasonable answer about your ability to collect unemployment.   

However, any issue derived from individual state unemployment administrative laws can vary depending on which state agency, aka, your state unemployment insurance department, is in control of dispensing benefits.

However, Q&As discussing what I think you need to know to prove, or rebut abound here also, because whatever the burden of proof might be, the name of the game should include language that suggest it requires from you also .. credible testimony and/or evidence, or a natural propensity to argue verbally to compel and sway the powers that be .. to win a little old lower level (first) unemployment appeal hearing.     

If interested, I can sometimes offer referrals to profession UI hearing reps .. or personalized coaching with myself.   Please feel free to learn if professional unemployment services can help you.  It begins with a free initial case evaluation.

Unemployment Insurance Benefits are Connected to How Administrative Law Agencies Regulate Those Laws to Work

Free Unemployment Resources.  Few use them, but I still do, even  after close to twenty years messing around with unemployment insurance benefits .. regardless of which state controls the rules of this administrative law game.

My goal isn't to insult anyone, but to provide, and sometimes explain how a lack of unemployment experience when trying to collect unemployment for the first time in your life, can end up being one cause for why people I think could of won an appeal hearing, lost their benefits and instead had to repay benefits.  

Being unprepared to win a tribunal (lower level appeal authority) unemployment appeal hearing, is being unprepared for a quasi-legal fight, where it's expected you know why you need a valid argument based on how a state's unemployment laws have been interpreted to work. 

Who interprets how unemployment laws work?   The same administrative law agency that's been deciding if you should get, or be denied unemployment benefit all along .. until the time when an unemployment appeal is no longer quasi-legal, but legal.   

In a nutshell, I think to collect unemployment benefits, you need to know why and how to win an unemployment hearing .. because the appeal process is used like a tool, by unemployment cost control companies representing employers with the intent to deny benefits, especially if a claimant is initially allowed to collect.  The underlying excuse for many of very generically framed employer appeals is .. the claimant who doesn't know how to prepare to win .. isn't a problem, but often a big help.

My mantra, if you're still working is to figure out how to improve your unemployment claim and case for benefits before you quit, or get fired through no fault of their own? 

In other words .. document, document, document with relevancy, to unemployment insurance's burden and the  issue because that's what  makes it easier for someone like me to coach an unemployed person, or a hearing rep to prove the claimant's testimony and evidence is also the credible facts surrounding the cause for separation .. found on the record, of a full fact finder hearing .. aka a tribunal unemployment hearing.

Free Advice to Collect Unemployment Benefits

Iunemployment insurance benefits work, the claimant is not always blameless for the demise of their own job.  But if those who did lose their job, "through no fault of their own", also knew how to verbally argue this to be the facts about their claim,  they would realize how necessary it is to prepare to win an  unemployment hearing .. maybe even before applying for unemployment benefits. .

So, aside from the free advice and Q&As below, it's my hope some of you will understand the value of the referral program  I have to professionals offering claimants unemployment appeal representation.

Question: How Not to Be Denied Unemployment Benefits

If you lose a job through no fault of your own, it's assumed you will know how to take full advantage of the laws and the quasi-legal administrative unemployment process including the appeal process to win, or keep benefits, just as employers do when the goal is to deny benefits. 

Employers fight benefits for the right reasons, but I also know some fight for  the wrong and indifferent reasons because when you get benefits, the business end of things, end up being charged for those benefits, via a higher UI experience tax rating.

The reality of an appeal fight can vary from case to case.. at least if you're asking me.  However, I know the business end of things, clearly has the edge of experience over claimants, given the last 82 years has been plenty of time to develop best practices in the workplace and UI cost control companies that have come to the fore to actually train employers on how to attain denials, by improving methods to meet, or rebut unemployment insurance laws burdens of proof.  Employees on the other hand, don't often see this big objective truck .. until it's too late and they look back to see all those coulda, woulda, shoulda moments.

Individual state unemployment laws in fact vary by state, but instead of lending to the general confusion I know you likely need understand how one state's laws point you to more objective ways to argue why you're not at fault .. beginning when you apply for benefits, then talk to a claim interviewer, or present your truth, in such a way it becomes the credible facts accepteds at a lower level tribunal hearing.

My first tip to collect unemployment benefits legitimately, is it easier said than done to set aside how you feel about losing your job, and just make better objective use of  how state's laws controlling your claim have been interpreted via precedents and regulations for you to  verbally argue smarter for benefits at a tribunal unemployment hearing.


About These Tips to Collect Benefits

Regardless of who appeals an initial monetary, or non-monetary claim determination, when my time came to collect unemployment, I had a bit more than just a basic understanding of how unemployment eligibility rules worked while I did my job to best of my ability.


Focus on the Burden That Needs Proving

In case you missed it, the burden to prove the cause for separation was good, is assigned to the moving party .. once you apply for unemployment benefits .. correctly, meaning you choose the right cause for separation.

Preparation to receive unemployment benefits isn't much different from how employers work to deny benefits with how a burden works, but in  both voluntary quit and misconduct cases, I know to get better results more often, even employees need some understanding of how at-will employment can affect unemployment benefits .. before one loses a job, to prove it wasn't your fault.  Hint .. document, document, document.

You can also find tips on the blog .. since I've answered lots of questions about collecting unemployment benefits.

Or you can request a referral to an experienced professional UI hearing representative

PS  The professional UI hearing rep I refer cases to, offer free initial case evaluations.

It's Good to Know What "Available Information" an Unemployment Claim Interviewer Should Be Asking, Relative to an Unemployment Burden of Proof

The earlier you know, the more effective you can be to collect benefits initially, as well as keeping benefits them safe, should your employer appeal and try to prove, or rebut by the fault for losing your job, is your own.

I coordinated thousands of lower level unemployment appeals for employers. I worked on appeals in every state, at one time or another.  Most days I began by digging backwards into an employer's file and the state claim file, to hunt for hints, clues, witnesses, evidence .. anything, that could help the employer secure a win after an appeal hearing..  

Regardless of my personal opinion about the merits of an employer's appeal being for good, wrong, or what got under my skin, indifference to a lack of merit to fight benefits on facts,  I learned from all that digging, that as an employee, I had a responsibility to protect myself if I ever had to face an administrative unemployment law agency and prove the truth to be the credible facts of my case.

You can read more about me, or just my own unemployment story here.



In 2016, twenty-seven percent of the total unemployed nationwide, were allowed to collect and more importantly, keep their unemployment benefits  

If  27 percent sounds like a low number to you, or not, my own job experience explained why a significant portion were only denied benefits at a tribunal hearing after initially being allowed to collect.

While I had a job in the UI field, I learned some ugly truths.  One that bothered me most .. is the self disqualification glitch, that begins with human nature and the tendency to deflect fault by blaming another from a subjective, rather than a much needed objective view of how, the actual burden to prove fault works after the UI administrative law agency .. initially  assigns the burden to the "moving party".

The question is .. are you currently thinking about using a quasi-legal argument to get benefits .. that can do you more harm than good?

Improve Your Position to the Burden of Proof of Quitting, or Getting Fired

You need to look to the specifics of what the burden to prove is, if you want to not waste time on proving irrelevant facts that don't actually improve the odds you will end up collecting unemployment ..

In general, this is why I stress taking preventative measures as an employee, so one can use the documentation produced from those efforts, to have at least some ability to affect and weight your testimony at a hearing to be accepted as credible facts.

Simply put, it's more difficult to make a compelling argument after the facts are cemented, or forgotten .. without the added weight of a document, otherwise known as evidence. 

You should also know I'm not an unemployment lawyer, but then again if I were .. I'd be as rare as a unicorn some states force claimants to go in search of .. but only if you think you might need expertise to get, or keep your benefits.

Otherwise, why not start with some important free advice and write a K.I.S.S. Unemployment Appeal Letter


If you want to submit a question about your unemployment situation the articles below are to help you frame a better question. 

If you want a sampling of some of the testimonials I've received over the years, or even offer some constructive type feedback click  here.

Unemployment Questions .. and Answers

There's access to more Q&As here, however, I need to warn you, there's so many, the page loads quite slowly and now serves my purpose of being the archive.

If you just want to get straight to an answer, a hearing rep's unemployment appeal services, might be a better option for some.


What's New on the Unemployment Blog

  1. Am I doing everything right?

    Nov 21, 17 05:56 PM

    My check status keeps saying no check has been issued but I have been credited. I have done 3 weekly claims. Received the letter in the mail saying how

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  2. CAN I COLLECT MISSOURI UNEMPLOYMENT WHEN RECEIVING SOCIAL SECURITY INCOME (My answer provides the resource for anyone asking this question in any state)

    Nov 17, 17 08:41 PM

    I AM 67 YEARS OLD AND I WANT TO KNOW IF I CAN COLLECT UNEMPLOYMENT BENIFITS WHILE RECIEVING SOCIAL SECURITY INCOME IF I NEED TO WORK UNTIL I AM 71 YEARS

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  3. Thanks for Your Candor

    Nov 09, 17 09:06 PM

    Hi Chris, Thank you so much for taking the time to speak with me today! I truly appreciate your candor and I am sorry I did not find you before my initial

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  4. My Thanks!!

    Nov 04, 17 01:33 PM

    Chris I hope that all is well with you! First of all, I’d like to thank you for ALL that you do in support of individuals like myself, who unfortunately

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  5. The Best Help

    Oct 30, 17 10:35 PM

    I had been so worried until I went to unemployment tips. With Chris, I understood what I was reading and could easily relate. What was so helpful to

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  6. Worked 1 day,quit due to employees making comments about my looks,expensive jewlery,asking me to smoke pot eith them after work in parking lot!

    Oct 30, 17 06:43 PM

    I was offered a Full-Time position at a company in a rather dangerous area, around seedy motels known for prostitution, drugs, etc. The job was located

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  7. Was I laid off?

    Oct 24, 17 02:29 PM

    I had been working for my employer for 11 months when I developed a non work related medical condition which when symptomatic prevented me from performing

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  8. We Won the EDD Appeal Hearing

    Oct 23, 17 07:51 PM

    Hi Chris, I meant to send this update earlier; we won the appeal! Thanks for your assistance and the referral to Liz. I couldn't have done this without

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  9. Successful Unemployment Benefit Stories Often Begin with Managing the Credible Facts

    Oct 18, 17 07:49 PM

    Managing the truth, to be recognized as credible facts at an unemployment appeal hearing, is not rocket science. But I also knew when I became unemployed

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  10. Oklahoma Board of Review Questions

    Oct 18, 17 12:13 PM

    Hello. My husband was put onto involuntary medical leave from his employer on August 10th, saying that he could only be placed back on the schedule by

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  11. Seasonal Employment and Unemployment

    Oct 09, 17 12:27 PM

    Manager hired me in April 2016 telling me at the end of the season you will qualify for seasonal unemployment. This in fact, was not the case in 2016.

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