IL WIA program, but not yet in WIA
I am unemployed and was notified of the WIA program (as everybody in IL is) and chose a school program that is on the WIA approved list. However, I was told that I cannot yet qualify for WIA because I was not unemployed long enough (6 months). The WIA advisor told me that if she was me, she would go into the WIA approved program anyway (and pay for the first semester myself), collect unemployment, and then when I qualify for WIA, continue with WIA.
Is there a way to start the school program and still collect unemployment?
All I can say is that .. watch out. If I received advice that sounded like that .. I would be asking some questions for clarification.
My though is without departmental approval for the program, you will still be running the risk of losing your unemployment.
But, since I don't know what 'suitable work' is for you or the usual hours that you would have to make yourself available to accept a suitable job you have to make certain you could win an unemployment appeal if they suspend your benefits.
You should check out the impressive, Illinois unemployment resource
to find out what, if any, the provisions are for students attending part-time school and exactly what able and available and suitable work is interpreted to mean in Illinois.
And of course the state law comparison chartbooks at DOLETA
are a good place to identify if an issue might exist. (They sure are taking their time updating for 2011)
As far as I know, all continuing claim forms ask a question along these lines for the week claimed:
Did you start or attend school? And if I'm not mistaken some may also include the word 'approved' not 'might be approved' later.
Clearly, my answer is a warning to dig deeper into the reasons the the unemployment department might be able to disqualify you even though, you received the information from a WIA counselor.
This section of the department are not experts in the section of law that disqualifies. They handle re-employment efforts and approved training programs and might not be considering the effect of unemployment laws that tell us about disqualifications.