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The Process to Claim Unemployment Benefits in Kentucky

Recently unemployed workers may be able to claim unemployment benefits from the state of Kentucky if they meet the eligibility requirements. Residents may find that claiming benefits for unemployment can make paying for necessities easier while actively seeking new work.

We have compiled helpful information, hints, and tips about claiming unemployment benefits in Kentucky on this website and FAQs and our free guide. Learn more about unemployment benefits in Kentucky by reading below, checking out our Kentucky FAQs, and reading our free guide.

Learn About Unemployment Benefits in Kentucky

Individuals hoping to claim unemployment benefits in Kentucky should first familiarize themselves with the eligibility requirements to receive federal unemployment benefits. The biggest factor that is taken into consideration with each unemployment application is the reason why the applicant is currently unemployed.

The applicant must be unemployed due to no fault of their own, and confirmation of this fact must be provided by their employer on their unemployment benefits claim. The applicant’s employer will be notified of the submitted application and will be asked to either attend the hearing or submit a formal testimony relaying why the applicant was terminated from his or her job.

Reasons that an applicant may be found ineligible to receive federal unemployment benefits include:

  • Misconduct in the workplace, or not following the rules and regulations set in place by the employer.
  • Illegal activity such as theft or sexual harassment within the workplace.
  • Incarceration occurring during the work period.
  • Drug or alcohol abuse during work hours that prevents the employee from fully performing their job.
  • Willful violation or lack of interest in the needs of the employer.

Just because an applicant has left his or her job voluntarily does not necessarily mean the applicant will automatically be disqualified from claiming benefits for unemployment. Some scenarios such as dangerous work conditions, verbal, mental or physical abuse, the illegal withholding of wages, sexual harassment or demands to work excessive hours will all be considered on a case-by-case basis and may still allow an applicant to claim unemployment benefits.

Learn About Filing a Claim in Kentucky

Qualified former workers can complete the unemployment application process online through the state’s ID.me portal. When filing for unemployment, applicants must prove they meet the specific qualifications to qualify for assistance.

Likewise, beneficiaries need to recertify for benefits on a weekly or biweekly basis. All applicants must file claims throughout the duration of their claim as beneficiaries. Even after approval, the applicant must keep a record of the names, emails, addresses, phone numbers and any additional information needed to show an adequate record of all jobs the applicant has applied to.

Not all applicants are able to actively seek out work while receiving federal unemployment benefits. Applicants who are faced with temporary mental or physical disabilities that prevent them from working full or part-time jobs will still be considered eligible to claim unemployment benefits as long as their disabilities are not found to be long-term.

Those who are unable to seek out work due to an out-of-state move that came as a direct result of domestic violence or due to the immediate need to supply care to an ill family member will also be taken into special consideration and may still be eligible to qualify for unemployment benefits.

How Long You May Receive Benefits in Kentucky

Being that unemployment benefits are designed to be a temporary form of aid, most applicants will only claim unemployment benefits for a total of 26 weeks. However, in some instances, an unemployment benefits extension can be granted for those who need extra time.

Failure to continually meet the eligibility requirements of the program could inhibit the applicant from claiming benefits for unemployment. This information is vital to keep in mind since all federal unemployment benefits are intended only as temporary relief until the applicant seeks out a new form of employment. Failure to continue to look for jobs or rejecting a job offer can be viewed as fraud, in which case you can be charged accordingly.

Learn About Unemployment Benefits and Federal Income Tax

The amount an applicant is eligible to claim on unemployment varies from state to state, but almost all benefits are based directly upon the amount of money the applicant at their last employment. The state of Kentucky checks recent work history during a one-year “base period” in order to determine the eligibility and amount an applicant can claim from unemployment benefits.

In order to qualify, an applicant must have earned a minimum of $1,500 in one of the four quarters in the base period. UI applicants must also have earned at least $1,500 outside of their highest-paid quarter within that base period. The wages that an applicant received in the total four quarters of the base period must be at least one-and-a-half times the amount in the highest quarter.

All unemployment benefits are considered income and are, therefore, subject to income tax. Beneficiaries may request the state to withhold taxes or pay their financial responsibility when they file their tax returns.

Last Updated: October 11, 2022