Should I just collect and not look for work?

Should I just collect and not look for work?

Ashley Wilson
Community Specialist
May 4, 2020
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Times are tough and many are finding themselves out of work and collecting unemployment, and many more of those individuals are wondering if it’s better to just collect than to work.

While it IS helpful to collect unemployment benefits while out of work, unemployment is created to be a temporary source of income. It’s important to continue to apply and search for new opportunities and here’s why.

It’s a requirement

To qualify for benefits, all states require those collecting unemployment to be actively seeking work. Some states even ask you to sign a sworn statement that you are continuously looking for employment, while others mandate proof that you’ve contacted a certain number of job contacts per week.

Unemployment will end

Unemployment is a great temporary financial assistance solution - but it WILL run out. Typically benefits will last for 26 weeks; however, each state independently dictates the length of unemployment. Coronavirus update: Under the CARES Act, you are eligible to receive an additional 13 weeks of unemployment benefits. This means you may receive benefits up to 39 weeks in total.

No benefits

When you receive unemployment, you do not receive any additional benefits such as health insurance or life insurance. You are responsible for any insurances you may need or risk covering extreme costs should an emergency occur.

There is no such thing as a “free lunch”

The funds you are receiving for unemployment are taxed which you will be responsible for. If you choose not to have taxes withheld from your unemployment benefits, you may be required to make payments directly to the IRS instead as quarterly estimated tax payments.

You might even have to make quarterly payments in addition to withholding from your benefits. In most cases, you're obligated to make estimated payments if you expect that you'll owe at least $1,000 after accounting for taxes withheld from all your sources of income, and if you expect that your withheld taxes plus any refundable tax credits you're eligible for will be less than 90% of what you'll owe or 100% of the total taxes you paid last year.

Gaps in your resume

The longer you go without work the larger those gaps on your #resume will grow and the harder it will be to land a job. Remember, you are always more hireable when you have a job versus when you are without one for a long period of time. Check out some available jobs hiring right NOW in this article

Important to know

Make sure to report when you are back to work and notify your state’s UI office if you plan to continue claiming UI benefits. Do not wait until you receive your first paycheck to report your return to work. The UI agency uses state and national resources to track new hires, so it is in your best interest to report your return to work immediately to avoid the consequences of an overpayment.

If you were able to collect do you have any advice for others?

#coronavirus

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Jayme DeCordova
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Can you take a workshop or certification/license course while on unemployment?,. I was thinking of renewing my elapsed realtors license

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Jayme DeCordova
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You are correct ,. Unemployment is just temporary fix and try and applying everywhere you can is a given !,. Honestly there’s nothing going on as far as hiring ,.. inspite of all these “ work from home” jobs . Most are predators collecting info and bank accounts . Beware!!!,. I’m not gonna get into the “job sites” .. I keep getting same job postings over and over ??. I still apply tho ., nothing better to do 🤓But anyway better times ahead!,.. June-July companies should start hiring but soooooo many people looking

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Richard Byron
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It would be in your best interest to continue to seek employmen,t and if offered a position then you need to be thankful that you have a job.

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Brad Stokes
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Under normal circumstances, in order to continue to receive UI you must be actively searching for work (min. 4 contacts per week in the state where I live) and you probably will be required to document your contacts on the UI website, or a related one.

However, these are not normal circumstances. In my state, the work search requirement was originally suspended for 10 weeks, starting March 22 (that works out roughly to the end of May). Now, that has been changed to "30 days following the lifting of the emergency measures." Effectively, that will most likely extend further the suspension of work search requirements until well into the Summer, and maybe even longer.

That said, even if work search requirements are currently suspended in your state, you should still be looking and documenting it now. At some point, UI benefits will end, and the earlier you're into the process of finding work, the farther ahead you will be of everyone who sat back and waited to get into the game.

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monica randolph
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I'm in Las Vegas where the unemployment rate is now 28%. Thankfully I started working March 16th-one day before all of the casinos were shut down. I suggest to anyone receiving unemployment benefits to keep looking for work and if you're receiving the extra 600$ a week save as much as you can. My job gave us laptops to work from home so I'm going to try to hang on to this job as long as I can even though it's a low paying micromanaged customer service position.

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Kelly Austin
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The government's portion of the unemployment pay will end on July 31st. Its not a question of looking for a job, its weather or not you feel safe enough to go back to work during this pandemic.

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charo stovall
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Fuck this so called unemployment?? 2 weeks,on the phone on hold? over 24 hrs on hold

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Susan Gorsline
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The way I look at it. I’m hitting it hard. I hate being on unemployment. I want what I had or something better. And here I come. A great comment I saw on this thread was. This too shall pass... And it will.

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Deborah Kraus
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I have been played off from my job of 30 years I want that back

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Gill Shaw
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When I registered for unemployment this week, it asked me to list 5 jobs I had applied for , I have found a part time job, don’t know watt happens to benefits, from this week, I will struggle, but I need to work, x good luck 😉

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