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  • Even if you were fired for a valid reason you may still qualify for unemployment compensation if it does not fall within the disqualifying provisions of the Pennsylvania UC Law

    Could you please answer me a question. Can a person receive unemployment after he has been fired from a job and if so is there a waiting period to receive them? Robert A. South.

    Eligibility for unemployment compensation is based on two main factors: financial eligibility and benefit eligibility. Financial eligibility is determined by how long you worked and how much you earned in your previous job. Financial eligibility is determined by the information you provide to the PA Unemployment Office in FORM UC-44F. You will find more information on financial eligibility in our article: How To Determine Financial Eligibility.

    Benefit eligibility, on the other hand, is determined by the circumstances before you lost your job. You will qualify for benefits if you lost your job through no fault of your own. If on the other hand you left your job voluntarily or you were sacked due to misconduct, you are unlikely to qualify for unemployment compensation.

    The reason for leaving a job is provided by your employer when processing your discharge. It is a good idea to talk to your employer before leaving your job to make sure you know what reason she gives to avoid surprises. Some employers might accept some negotiation when describing the reason you are leaving.

    Let us analyze some of the most used reasons for leaving a job and assess eligibility for Pennsylvania Unemployment Compensation for each circumstance.

    Health Reasons.

    If you leave work for health reasons and do not inform your boss, so she can find other suitable work for you, you will probably not qualify for UC. However, if you inform your boss and make yourself available for other work and she can’t find alternative work for you, you may qualify for unemployment compensation.

    Job Not As Anticipated.

    If you are disappointed about the job you accepted you will only qualify for unemployment benefits if you can show that the monetary expectations of employment were not fulfilled through no fault of your own. For instance, if you were promised you could earn $40,000 a year on commissions selling washing machines, but fail to make a sale in the first month and cannot cover your basic expenses, you may qualify for UC.

    However, if compensation expectations have been met and you do not have solid reasons to quit the job, you will most likely not qualify for unemployment.

    Absenteeism/Late to Work.

    If you are fired because you are regularly late to work or miss work repeatedly you may not apply for unemployment compensation. However, if your employer did not give you sufficient warning or you had a good reason to be late or absent are valid, you could still qualify for unemployment compensation.

    See more disqualifying provisions for benefit eligibility in our next article of this series.

    Understanding how unemployment benefits work in Pennsylvania can be challenging. One question we get a lot is how can you find out how many weeks of unemployment you have left. Todd Foringer posted this query:

    I needed to know when my unemployment is phased out…? I don’t know where I find this out since I fill out the unemployment and then I don’t have any documents with it to tell me for how long I have it. It was extended on the last extension that is all I know.

    This question illustrates well some of the complications of the unemployment benefit system. Is Todd referring to the basic unemployment benefits of Pennsylvania or to the extended benefits granted by the Federal government. Is he asking if congress has passed a further extension to unemployment benefits? Let us answer those questions in turn.

    This article will help you find out how many unemployment benefits checks you have left.


    To request information on your claim status you will need to provide personal information to prove your identity. This may include your full name, date of birth and your Social Security number. It is worth mentioning that under no circumstance should you provide this information unless you are sure you contacted (or have been contacted) by the Department of Labor and Industry. In other words do not reply to phone calls from people who claim to work for the PA Unemployment Office and ask for your full social security number.

    Click here to visit PA’s Unemployment Office Claim Status Login page. You will need to provide your Social Security number and the pin provided by the system when you registered.

    If you do not have the pin number you can visit your local unemployment office. Click here for an article on how to find the contact details of your nearest PA Career Link office.

    You can also work out how many weeks you have left by counting back from your first check. The State of Pennsylvania provides 26 weeks of basic unemployment benefits. Grab a calendar and count 26 weeks from the first week you claimed for benefits. From this date you can count the weeks you have been under Federal extended benefits. In PA you could be eligible for up to 13 weeks of extended benefits. Count 13 weeks from your last week of regular unemployment benefits and you will know how many weeks you have left.

    For more information on Extended Benefits you can visit our sister site Extended Unemployment Benefits.com for more information on the Federal extended benefits program.

    Learn how to find your local CareerLink unemployment office.

    Many of our readers have asked us how they can find their local CareerLink Office. The Pennsylvania CarrerLink program has a website you can use to find the closest office to you. Unfortunately the they have not done the best of jobs (pun intended) at spreading the word.

    There are many reasons you should visit your local CareerLink office. At the CareerLink Unemployment Office you can claim for unemployment benefits, look for a job, write out a resume, search for a job online and apply for extra training. All for free.

    Filing for UC Benefits.

    Even if all you want to do is file your UC benefits, the CareerLink is a great place to file your claim the fastest and easiest way –online. The CareerLink website is operative 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so you never have to miss a benefits check. All Career Link offices have internet connection so you can access the Career Link website.

    Career Link Search Engine.

    The CareerLink website uses a search engine to find the closest office to you. The search engine will ask you a series of questions to help you find the most convenient Career Link office. This is how it works:

    Click here to visit the search engine, but first read on, and learn how the search engine works.

    1) The first windows will ask you what type of office you are looking for: PA Career Link office, PA CareerLink affiliate, Blindness and Visual Services, Vocational and Rehabilitation Services, Hiram G. Andrews Center or the County Assistance Office. Click on the office you are interested in. Most likely you want the first option: PA Career Link Office.

    2) The second window asks for the location you are searching an office for. Write in the name of your town or city.

    3) Another alternative is to write your address in window three and the website engine will help you find the closest office to you. On your right there is a County selector that goes from Adams to York. Choose your county from the list.

    4) A final option is to search for a CareerLink office by county. Just select the county you are interested in and find the contact details of the Career Link offices available in that county.

    Another great reason to visit your local PA Career Link office is to enlist in Pennsylvania’s PREP program. This program is designed to help unemployed workers who are most likely to use up their unemployment benefits. The program targets those that need help the most and provides services to help them find a job. To join this program and enjoy the resources it provides you must visit your local Career Link Program.

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