Your claim should be filed in the first week that you have become totally or partially unemployed. It is important to file timely because your first week is an unpaid waiting week, commonly referred to as the “waiting period”. A delay may cost you benefits.
You should apply for UI benefits using the Benefits Online Page between the hours of 7:30am to 7:30pm Monday through Thursday (Eastern Time), Friday, 7:30am to 5:00pm, all day Saturday, and Sunday until 7:00pm.
Federal and New York State laws prohibit discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, national origin, sex, age or marital status. Your claim for unemployment insurance benefits will be evaluated and an eligibility determination will be made without regard to any of these factors.
What you should have available before you file your claim:
1. Your Social Security number
2. Your New York State driver’s license or Motor Vehicle ID card number (if you have either one)
3. Your complete mailing address and zip code
4. Telephone number where we can contact you between 8am-5pm, Monday through Friday
5. Your Alien Registration card number (if you are not a U.S. Citizen and have a card)
6. The names and addresses of all employers for whom you’ve worked within the last 18 months, including those employers in another state
7. Employer Registration number or Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) of your most recent employer (FEIN may be found on your W-2 forms) (if you have either)
8. Your copies of forms SF8 and SF50, if you had federal employment within the last 18 months
9. Your copy of your most recent separation form DD 214, if you are an ex-service member claiming benefits based on your military service
10. If you are unable to print, have a pen and paper available to write down important information
11. If you are choosing to have direct deposit of your weekly benefits, you must have a check handy in order to enter your bank routing and checking account numbers
If you do not have all of the documents listed above, you may still file a claim. There may be some delay, however, in receiving your first payment.
You may also file a claim by calling our Telephone Claims Center at 1-888-209-8124 for New York State residents (or 1-877-358-5306 for out of state residents) between 8:00am and 5:00pm, Monday through Friday. This is a toll-free call. If you choose to file your claim by phone, an automated voice will offer you the choice of filing in English, Spanish, Russian, Cantonese, Mandarin, Creole, or “all other languages” (translation services will be provided). Listen to the choices carefully and enter the appropriate number on your telephone’s numeric keypad to file a claim. If you have never filed a claim for benefits in New York State, you will be asked to create a Personal Identification Number (PIN). This will be a four-digit number that you must keep confidential.
* If you are a person with a disability who is unable to access our services without the assistance of another person, you may allow another person to assist provided you are present each time the services are accessed including the entry of the PIN. You will be held accountable for the actions of your agent and may be subject to penalties including forfeiture of benefits if you are not present when your agent accesses our services.*
Callers who are hearing- or speech-challenged or have difficulty using the telephone for any reason may also request that friend or relative assist in the telephone claim process.
Hearing impaired individuals, who have Telephone Device for the Deaf (TTY/TDD) equipment, may file a claim by calling a relay operator at 1-800-662-1220 and requesting the operator to call 1-888-783-1370. Service at this number will only be provided to callers using TDD equipment.