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Michigan Unemployment Application Information

We are an online resource to help answer your questions, check eligibility and assist in applying for Unemployment. You will also be advised if you qualify for additional benefit programs and receive our benefit guide.

How to Sign Up for Unemployment Insurance in Michigan


To apply for unemployment benefits in Michigan and to discover where to sign up for unemployment, the former worker has two options at his or her disposal: file an online application for unemployment or file for an unemployment claim by telephone. Petitioners can call to ask “How can I sign up for unemployment?” in addition to other questions about the process, such as what information to have when filing for unemployment.

For more details on the different features of unemployment registration, read the following sections:

•    Where to register for unemployment benefits in Michigan
•    Michigan unemployment registration required information 
•    Michigan unemployment registration process

Where to Register for Unemployment Benefits in Michigan


An applicant has wondered where to apply for unemployment in MI has two answers: file an online unemployment EDD application using the Michigan Web Account Manager (MiWAM) or file for unemployment by calling Michigan’s Automated Response Voice Interactive Manager (MARVIN). Regarding how to apply for unemployment online using MiWAM, there are instructions for that on the Unemployment Insurance Agency (UIA) website. It is available six days a week, 24 hours a day from Monday at 12 a.m. through Saturday at 11:59. MARVIN is available to be called between 8 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. The last two numbers of the claimant’s Social Security number correspond to a one-hour window within that day/time frame. 


Michigan Unemployment Registration Required Information 


The required information for Michigan unemployment registration can be found using the MiWAM toolkit online. There is a script for MARVIN which includes questions for the online application for unemployment and the telephone certification process.

The questions are:
1) Has your address changed since your last certification?
2) Are you claiming the week beginning Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
3) Were you available to accept full-time work every day from Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
4) Were you able to work full-time every day between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
5) Did you look for work during the week Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
6) Did you quit any job between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
7) Did you refuse any job(s) or offer(s) of work between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
8) Were you fired from any job between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
9) Did you BEGIN attending school or training classes between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
10) Did you begin receiving a pension between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
11) Did you receive vacation pay between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
12) Did you receive or will you receive holiday pay for a holiday that occurred from Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
13) Did you receive severance pay between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
14) Did you do any type of work for pay or promise to pay between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
15) Did you have any earnings between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?
16) Did you return to work full-time between Sunday (date) through Saturday (date)?


Michigan Unemployment Registration Process


Along with the claimant’s MI unemployment registration, he or she must register for work before becoming eligible for unemployment benefits, even if they registered for work immediately prior to filing that claim, and the registration has not expired. 

To register, the UI petitioner must create a profile on Pure Michigan Talent Connect online. When a petitioner goes to file for an unemployment claim, he or she must also report in person to a Michigan Works! Agency (MWA) service center, no later than three business days before contacting MARVIN or MiWAM to claim benefits. The applicant can create his or her profile online. MWA staff will validate the claimant’s profile for the UIA. Free access to the internet is available at any MWA service center. Failure to register for work can result in a delay or loss of benefits.

If the former employee is on a temporary lay-off (less than 120 days from his or her last day worked) from a full-time job, he or she does not have to register for work to be eligible for unemployment benefits. During the unemployment EDD application process, the former worker is asked a question about returning to work and the date. If the answer was that they have a return-to-work date with the same employer within 120 days from the last day of full-time work, he or she does not have to register for work—although the petitioner still must submit the Monthly Work Search report through MiWAM or mail.

If the claimant gets his or her job by going to a union hiring hall which assigns applicants to companies, he or she does not have to register for work. If the applicant only seeks work through a union hall, he or she must follow union hiring hall procedures for checking for work and must submit his or her Monthly Work Search report indicating that work was sought through a union hiring hall.