Eligibility for Unemployment Benefits in Alaska
Understanding the qualifications for unemployment in Alaska is one of the first steps you can take towards filing for unemployment insurance. Unemployment benefits are provided by the state of Alaska to assist you while you seek out new employment. To understand who qualifies for unemployment, it is important to familiarize yourself with the state requirements. Eligibility for EDD (Employment Development Department) benefits requires that the applicant is terminated due to objective, business-specific reasons.
To learn more about how to qualify for unemployment, examine the sections below:
Who qualifies for unemployment in Alaska?
In Alaska, the qualifications for unemployment are mainly focused on the reason why the applicant was terminated. In addition to the reason, the current capabilities of the applicant are also taken into consideration. An applicant who qualifies for unemployment in Alaska must:
- Be able to work and actively seeking employment.
- Have earned a minimum amount of wages prior to becoming unemployed.
- Be unemployed at no fault of his or her own, for reasons approved by Alaska state law.
- Actively engage in any reemployment services assigned.
- Post a resume online on the Alaska Labor Exchange System (ALEXsys).
An applicant may still obtain eligibility for EDD if he or she has a temporary disability that will allow him or her to work full time in the near future but not currently. However, if you are incarcerated or are currently facing legal restrictions that prevent you from seeking full-time work, you may not qualify for unemployment.
In order to maintain your eligibility for unemployment in AK, if you are approved to collect unemployment insurance, it is important that you continue to follow all of the necessary requirements. File your weekly claims in a timely fashion and keep a list of locations where you have submitted applications. Also, you must be able to show the date of contact, the name of the employer contacted and the method of contact for each job search. If an applicant in Alaska is offered a suitable position, he or she must accept it and discontinue receiving benefits. In the state of Alaska, suitable work means that the job matches your experience or training and meets realistic wage and working conditions for that area of work.
Note: The state of Alaska has set in place specific unemployment insurance eligibility guidelines to establish what grounds of termination qualify applicants for benefits. If it is found that you were wrongfully terminated, you will likely be accepted as a claimant.
What are the requirements to get unemployment in Alaska?
In order to be one of the applicants who qualifies for unemployment in Alaska, you must be unemployed due to no fault of your own. Acceptable reasons for unemployment include the following:
- You were terminated due to a reduction-in-force (RIF), or your workplace was downsized due to economic reasons.
- You were fired because you lacked the necessary skill set or were simply not a good fit.
- You quit your job for an unavoidable reason, such as dangerous working conditions, sexual harassment or a personal disability or illness that prevented you from properly performing your job.
Reasons that may disqualify you from receiving unemployment in Alaska include being fired due to:
- Willful disregard for your employer's interests.
- Breaking office rules or standards of behavior.
- Being under the influence of drugs or alcohol and being unable to perform your work duties.
- Theft (exceeding a value of $25) or abuse of property in the workplace.
Depending on the reason, denial of eligibility for EDD may not be permanent. For example, if you were fired from your job due to misconduct or voluntarily quit your job, you may not receive benefits for the first six weeks, but you may collect them for the following 20. These unemployment insurance eligibility decisions are made on a case-by-case basis and will be decided in accordance with the facts provided by both you and your employer.
Keep in mind that your reason for termination will be checked. Your former employer will be contacted and informed about your filed claim, at which point they will be able to testify during your claim hearing or submit a written testimony stating why you were laid off/fired. It is the employer’s responsibility, not the unemployment applicant’s, to prove that the terminated employee should not have eligibility for unemployment.
It is vital that all information and changes in employment are immediately reported to the unemployment insurance claim center, as Alaska law has severe penalties for those who attempt to collect benefits that they are not entitled to. Concerning unemployment insurance, fraud is knowingly making a false statement or withholding facts in order to obtain benefits.
Note: It is the responsibility of the beneficiary to read all UI-related mail and to contact the unemployment insurance claim center whenever instructed to do so. Those with AK unemployment insurance eligibility must also file all weekly claims in a timely manner. Failure to do so may result in the denial of unemployment insurance benefits.