Laid-off workers, independent contractors, gig workers, freelancers, and self-employed individuals may be eligible to receive unemployment benefits from the Employment Development Department (EDD) of the State of California.
Here are the four most important points covered in this article:
- The California Unemployment Insurance (UI) program pays benefits to workers who have lost their job and meet the program’s eligibility requirements.
- If you have become unemployed or partially unemployed (or lost work as an independent contractor, gig worker, freelancer, or self-employed), you may file a UI claim.
- You get your benefits paid through an EDD Debit Card issued by Bank of America.
As part of the federal CARES Act, the new Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program helps unemployed Californians who are business owners, self-employed, independent contractors, gig workers, have limited work history; and others not usually eligible for regular state UI benefits who are out of business or whose services are significantly reduced as a direct result of the pandemic.
In this article, I try to provide answers to many of the frequently asked questions about the California unemployment benefits process. Many of these questions and answers are derived from the EDD website, with appropriate links to the EDD page where updated information may be posted from time to time. But the EDD website is sometimes confusing and spread out, so I have attempted to bring some order and clarification to the questions and answers.
The questions and answers are categorized into the following major sections:
*Eligibility for California Unemployment Insurance Benefits for Employees
*How Much You Are Entitled to in Unemployment Benefits in California
*Filing an Unemployment Insurance Claim in California If You Were an Employee and Laid Off
*Unemployment Benefits for Independent Contractors, Gig Workers, Self-Employed Individuals and Freelancers in California
*Checking the Status of Your Unemployment Claim in California
*Reopening an Unemployment Insurance Claim in California
*Appealing an Adverse Decision on an Unemployment Claim
*How To Get Your Unemployment Benefits Paid—The EDD Debit Card
*California Training Benefits for Individuals Receiving Unemployment Benefits
*Additional Resources Available on California Unemployment Benefits
*Contact Information for the EDD on Unemployment Claims
Eligibility for California Unemployment Insurance Benefits for Employees
1. What are the requirements to be able to file a claim for unemployment insurance benefits in California?
To receive Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefit payments in California, you must meet all eligibility requirements when filing a claim and when certifying for benefits (which you must do weekly).
When filing for UI benefits in California, you must have earned enough wages during the base period to establish a claim, and be:
- Totally or partially unemployed
- Unemployed through no fault of your own
- Physically able to work
- Available for work
- Ready and willing to accept work immediately
A base period is a specific 12-month term the EDD uses to see if you earned enough wages to establish a UI claim. To learn how EDD determines your base period, review How Unemployment Insurance Benefits are Computed (DE 8714AB) (PDF).
Published at Wed, 03 Jun 2020 17:06:47 +0000