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  • Find out what extra requirements Federal and Military unemployed workers must meet.

    The process for applying for unemployment insurance is pretty straightforward for workers who live and work in Pennsylvania. But what about workers who worked outside the state, lived outside the state but worked in Pennsylvania or who were employed by the Federal government or the military? The application process and eligibility requirements do change slightly in these circumstances so if fall within those parameters, you will be interested in this series of articles. This article will look at the application and approval process for Federal and Military employees in Pennsylvania, while our next article will focus on the procedure for interstate workers who live in a different state from where they worked.

    The first step if you are an unemployed federal or military worker is to find out if you qualify for unemployment insurance in Pennsylvania. There are three main requirements you must meet. First, your last post or duty station was in Pennsylvania, second you are a Pennsylvania resident but your last post was outside of the United States, or third, your last employment after separating from your federal employer was in Pennsylvania.

    What do you need to apply for UI?

    Because the paperwork provided at termination by the federal government and military differs from that of regular employers in Pennsylvania, there are certain requirements you must satisfy that other employees do not. For instance, federal workers must wait longer to receive wage information than regular state workers, so you will need to mail your documentation to the UC Service Center of Pennsylvania. The documents you are required to provide include: your federal Standard Form 8, Notice to Federal Employee About Unemployment Compensation, Standard Form 50, Notification of Personnel Action and other documents that support your claim that you worked for a federal employer, such as your W-2 stubs, Withholding Tax Statement and pay stubs. Make sure you do not provide the original documents by post as these may get lost and you will have no further evidence of your employment. Copies will work just fine.

    Act Quickly

    Federal unemployed workers must, just as regular unemployed workers, file their claim as soon as possible. This means sending all supportive information to the UC Service Center as soon as possible. Notice you can only claim for unemployment weeks from the date you file your application. Previous weeks where you were unemployed and did not apply for benefits cannot be claimed for retroactively and they can affect your eligibility due to the way the Pennsylvania UI Agency calculates your base period: the income earning period that decides your unemployment insurance compensation.

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