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Unemployment Benefits

Unemployment benefits allow individuals to receive compensation, and our unemployment lawyers understand the importance of receiving these benefits when someone is out of work through no fault of their own. The staff at O’Connor Law want to ensure that people are receiving the full amount of benefits that they deserve. When people face unemployment or reductions in work hours, unemployment helps to assist people while they are finding another job or until they can return to work normally.

The Pennsylvania Office of Unemployment Compensation defines unemployment as a temporary source of income for people who have lost their job or are working reduced hours. For applicable individuals, the income payments will be able to provide support and assistance in paying for necessary and essential expenses until they receive a stable source of income.

Before filing for an initial unemployment claim, applicants must be able to provide specific information. The Office of Unemployment Compensation includes a list on their website of information that will be required. The website states that applicants will need to provide their Social Security number, home address, mailing address, telephone number, and email. Although it can be optional, they may also need to provide their personal identification number and direct deposit bank information. Along with their personal information, individuals will need to provide information about their previous employer. The information will include the employer’s name, address, phone number, unemployment compensation account number, as well as the employee’s first and last work day, reason for leaving, and information about pension or severance package. If individuals are unemployed as a result of being fired or quitting, our attorneys may be able to help them if the reason they quit or were fired was not their fault.

There are multiple items to take into consideration to qualify for unemployment benefits in Pennsylvania. First, workers must meet the specific financial requirements. If workers have not earned enough wages or credit weeks, they will not be eligible to receive benefits. Next, unemployment benefits will be provided to applicants who lost their jobs with qualifying separation that is not due to their fault. Finally, individuals must maintain their unemployment position. For example, if workers were offered more work, they should not refuse unless they have a reasonable dispute. In order to continue receiving unemployment benefits, beneficiaries must file biweekly claims. The claims will provide sufficient evidence that confirms that the applicant is still unemployed.

Unemployment compensation fraud is a very serious offense. Claims that are classified as fraudulent could potentially cause fines or imprisonment. The Office of Unemployment Compensation defines two types of overpayments, including fraud and nonfraud. Fraud overpayments are created when people purposely withhold or provide false information. Nonfraud overpayments determine that the applicant was not eligible for benefits that they previously received. If you are found to have a non-fraud overpayment, you do not need to pay back the money you were paid, however there is a clawback provision that allows them to reduce any future unemployment benefits by 1/3 in the future to recover the money they paid you. If you are found to have a fraud overpayment, you owe all the money back!

The difference between a fraud and non-fraud overpayment simply comes down to whether or not you were truthful in filling out your paperwork. As long as you did not lie or withhold information, you should be found to have a non-fraud overpayment.

The unemployment lawyers at O’Connor Law help our clients fight at every step of the process. Our unemployment lawyers will litigate the case if the employer is disputing the reason you were fired, if unemployment themselves question whether you meet the requirements, or if you are found to have an overpayment that you wish to fight.

Unemployment benefits are very important and beneficial to people who have lost their jobs. If you are currently unemployed and have been denied unemployment benefits for any reason, please contact our office to talk with one of our experienced unemployment lawyers. Our attorneys will be able to provide you information about benefit programs and to make sure that you will receive the optimum amount of compensation.

Client Reviews
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Valeen Hykes is very professional and an amazing asset to the firm. Her assistant Ana Lopez Vives was very professional and very helpful. She is also a great asset to the firm. Craig F.
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