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What is Unemployment Compensation?
What is Unemployment Compensation?
Unemployment compensation is a government program that provides temporary financial assistance to certain workers who are unemployed. In order to be eligible for these benefits a worker must be unemployed through no fault of their own. The program is funded by employers who pay federal and state unemployment compensation taxes.
What is the process to apply for unemployment compensation?
You can apply for unemployment compensation online or by phone. Once your application is initiated, you will receive a wage transcript and determination notice. This form will tell you how much your weekly unemployment compensation benefit will be and how it was calculated. Please note that it is important to continue to claim your weeks while you are waiting on the determination of your eligibility for unemployment compensation.
Your former employer has the right to submit a response to your application for unemployment compensation. In the employer's response, it can dispute your termination and state the grounds for your separation from work. The employer's response can be used to deny your request for unemployment compensation.
What are the reasons a person is denied Unemployment Compensation benefits?
You may be deemed ineligible for unemployment compensation benefits if you were terminated by your employer for misconduct. Under Florida Statute Section 443.036, misconduct is defined as 1) conduct that shows willful or wanton disregard of the employer's interests; or 2) carelessness or negligence to a degree that shows an intentional and substantial disregard of the employer's interests.
Your request for unemployment compensation benefits can be denied if you were terminated for one of the following reasons:
- Excessive tardiness
- Excessive absences
- Deliberate or intentional violation of an employer's rule or policy
- Sleeping on the job
What to do if your request for Unemployment Compensation is denied?
If your request is denied, you will receive a determination notice that will provide you with important information regarding your rights to appeal the denial of benefits. You have the right to request a hearing. The hearing will be conducted by telephone. There will be a hearing officer, the employer and its witnesses if applicable, and you and your witnesses if applicable. The employer has the burden of proving that you were terminated for misconduct. Your job during the hearing is to rebut the employer's testimony and provide alternative reasons for your termination. Based on the testimony presented, the hearing officer will decide whether you are entitled to unemployment compensation benefits.
If you have questions regarding unemployment compensation you may contact the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County at (561) 655-8944 or Florida Rural Legal Services at (561) 820-8902.
IMPORTANT: The information on this Website is not intended as legal advice or representation. No attorney-client relationship is created between the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County, Inc. and any person obtaining information from this website. Public benefits and other laws change frequently. We strive to keep this website up to date but cannot provide a guarantee that this information is accurate as of the time you are reading it.