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Get the most out of your unemployment benefits

If you are out of a job, you are far from alone. According to the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development, the unemployment rate in Minnesota is close to 4 percent.

Unemployment benefits are a helpful resource to individuals who lose their jobs. For you to hopefully get the most out of your benefits, it is important to understand the stipulations of receiving the assistance and other resources connected to it.

What are unemployment benefits?

Unemployment benefits can be described as assistance provided to displaced workers on a temporary basis. The DEED manages unemployment benefits, and with the low unemployment rate in Minnesota they are able to provide assistance to many qualifying unemployed individuals at a high maximum rate.

Who can receive them?

To be eligible for these services, individuals must meet certain requirements. Individuals must not be found at fault for becoming unemployed, must be physically and mentally able and available to work, must be seeking employment actively and must meet the set minimum threshold at their last pay rate.

To determine if filers meets the threshold requirement, the DEED looks at their base period. The department calculates it with the gross wages of the individual’s last 52-week work period.

How can you apply for them?

There are telephone and online options to apply for unemployment. You will need to have proper identification, your contact information, proof of previous employment for the past 18 months and direct deposit information.

Once you receive benefits, you must participate in the weekly certification, which basically states that you have been actively seeking suitable employment but have not secured it. Suitable employment is defined as employment that is similar to your previous position with the same pay range.

Are there other options?

Along with traditional unemployment, you may find additional benefits through your employment agreement. Depending upon your circumstances, you may also qualify for additional assistance, such as Disaster Unemployment Assistance or employment services for laid off workers. To get the most out of your unemployment benefits, take the time to fully understand the process and all the assistance that you qualify for.

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