Concerned and confused about unemployment.
February 4, 2010 5:14 PM   Subscribe

I'm currently unemployed and wondering if taking a job will affect my unemployment insurance eligibility.

I live in California and I have been unemployed for a month. I am still waiting to see my first unemployment insurance check. I was with my last company for 5 years.

I have been looking for jobs but I am concerned that if I take a new job and that job doesn't work out, that I will have to start all over and possibly lose whatever benefits I might have received from 5 years of work with my previous employer.

Can anyone lay my concerns to rest? I'd call and ask EDD, but there is a permanent message that both picks up and hangs up on you when you try to contact an actual person that way.
posted by digitaldraco to Work & Money (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm pretty sure your account will remain open, or re-openable, but I couldn't say for sure..
posted by gilgamix at 5:48 PM on February 4, 2010

My wife is on unemployment, and she concurs.
posted by gilgamix at 5:48 PM on February 4, 2010

I was unemployed for close to a year. The one time I worked during that year, I reported it, was (of course) not paid unemployment for that week, then, went immmediately back to the UE office and had it reinstated (seriosuly, as quickly as possible - a few days could mean losing a weeks worth of UE insurance). So, if the work you refer to is temporary, just go back to your local office and start over.
posted by marimeko at 6:04 PM on February 4, 2010

Best answer: In CA, you have a claim for a year, which contains about six months of money (there are also extended benefits, but that's the basic.) So you will not get unemployment while working, but if you lose that job, your claim still exists for the full year and you don't have to "start over."

The exception would be if you quit voluntarily or got fired for cause- but if you got laid off again, you'd still have the claim.

(I am not a lawyer or expert, but a guy who's been on UI in CA)
posted by drjimmy11 at 6:09 PM on February 4, 2010

I just re-read your question - no, it will not effect your eligibility.
posted by marimeko at 6:09 PM on February 4, 2010

Best answer: There is a trick to getting a human on the line at EDD. Call 1-800-300-5616. If the greeting is "Thank you for calling. . ." hang up and redial. If the answer is "Welcome to the. . . " press 12117. If you're told after the next greeting that you have x number of minutes to wait, you're in the line for a human.

I got this info from a CA EDD worker and it's worked for me this past month.

RE your question: When I made over a certain amount per week (less than 1k), and reported it of course, my unemployment was suspended. I had earned too much, and was required to contact EDD to get my claim reinstated.
posted by goofyfoot at 9:02 PM on February 4, 2010 [4 favorites]

Response by poster: goofyfoot: Thanks for that back door! It was frustrating getting hit with that automated brick wall every time I tried to call.

Thanks to everyone else for the help, too. I have a follow up question: If I have to re-instate my claim, will it take another month to get it going like it did this time? Or is it quicker once I have the initial claim filed and accepted?
posted by digitaldraco at 1:29 PM on February 5, 2010

Best answer: In my experience, it varies according to how busy EDD is. In summer '09 things moved swiftly; for the last two and a half months, matters have moved with elephantine slowness. I'm still waiting to hear about a suspended claim from November. Using the e-mail function in December didn't resolve my issue (though it did leave a trail of my attempted contacts, which subsequently I was told was useful). I've placed two more calls (NOT e-mails) since then about the problem.

Document everything so that when you speak to an EDD rep you have dates, names of reps, any ref number received via e-mail contact, a brief description of the discussion, etc.
posted by goofyfoot at 5:14 PM on February 5, 2010

Response by poster: Update: The trick mentioned by goofyfoot no longer works.
posted by digitaldraco at 2:47 PM on December 30, 2010

Apparently there's a new trick - couldn't try it today, because the whole EDD phone system crashed while I was on the line, but I've heard that 1-6-1-3 is the new 1-2-1-1-7.

When you get to a live person, be polite...most EDD people are doing the best they can within a very poorly constructed and understaffed system. But don't let them brush you off, either. If anything they say is unclear, ask for an explanation. Ask for a quick overview of whatever notes they've entered into your file to make sure it's all correct.

As one who has gone many rounds with EDD (my job is seasonal in nature) I'll reiterate goofyfoot's advice, too : document EVERYTHING!!

Good luck.
posted by Kibby at 5:29 PM on January 3, 2011

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