You may have enough wages in your base period to establish a benefit account; however, the reason for the separation from your employment could make you ineligible to receive benefits.
Quit: Applicants who quit employment are not eligible unless the quit falls into one of the following categories:
Discharged for employment misconduct: Applicants who are discharged because of employment misconduct are not eligible to receive unemployment benefit payments. Employment misconduct means any intentional or negligent conduct that either:
Examples of discharges that could potentially make an applicant ineligible are:
- Continued, unexcused absences and/or tardiness
- Using drugs or alcohol on the job
- Breaking company rules
- Intentional neglect of duties
- Insubordination, theft, fighting, or harassment
Examples of discharges that probably won't make an applicant ineligible include:
- Absence because of illness or injury with proper notice to the employer
- Inability to meet the employer's performance standards
- Ordinary errors or accidents not due to carelessness or negligence
- Honest mistakes or omissions
Discharged for aggravated employment misconduct: Applicants discharged for aggravated employment misconduct are not eligible to receive benefit payment. Wages earned from this employer will be removed from your benefit account. This may cause your account to have insufficient wages to be payable. Aggravated employment misconduct is any act that is a gross misdemeanor or felony if it affected the employment.
Examples of aggravated employment misconduct:
- Neglect, abuse or financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult
- Theft of more than $500
- Assault and battery, arson, sabotage, or embezzlement
Labor Disputes: Applicants who leave employment because they are participating in a strike or are a member of a striking union at the establishment where they were employed, are not eligible to receive benefit payment during the strike. Participation includes the failure or refusal to accept and perform available and customary work at the establishment where they were employed.
Examples of a labor dispute that could make an applicant ineligible:
- Applicant is a member of a striking union, or directly interested in the labor dispute.
- Applicant is honoring the picket lines of a different striking union involving their employer.
Exceptions to labor dispute that do not affect eligibility:
- Unemployed because of a strike caused by an employer's willful failure to observe the terms of the safety and health section of a union contract.
- Discharged before the start of the strike or labor dispute.
- Unemployed because of a lockout.
- Laid off due to a strike against the employer (in this case, the applicant is ineligible through the end of the week in which the strike begins).
If it is determined that you are not eligible to receive benefits because of a job separation, a determination will be mailed to you explaining the reason. You can be eligible again for payment during your benefit year by finding new work and earning wages of at least eight times your weekly unemployment benefit amount, and then be unemployed through no fault of your own. This work must be for an employer who pays into the unemployment insurance program fund or for a railroad that pays into the railroad unemployment fund. If you are ineligible due to a labor dispute, you will remain ineligible for as long as the strike is in progress.