Applying for an Unemployment Benefits Extension
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Unemployment benefits in Tennessee typically lasts a span of 26 weeks. However, in some cases an applicant may need more time, in which they may choose to file for an unemployment benefits extension. Usually these extensions are only available when the state of Tennessee reaches a peak level of unemployment, at which period a series of federal unemployment extensions may become available.
To receive an unemployment extension, applicants must go through a claim process similar to the one they experienced with their original unemployment benefits package. Once approved, the unemployment compensation extension will be granted for a determined period of time.
If you are asking yourself “What can I do to extend unemployment in TN?” read on to the following sections to learn more about federal unemployment extensions:
- Understanding Extended Benefits (EB) in Tennessee
- How to Get an Unemployment Extension in Tennessee
Tennessee Unemployment Resources
Understanding Extended Benefits in Tennessee
Unemployment benefit extensions in Tennessee are not currently available but can be made available by the Senate in cases of particularly high unemployment rates across the country. Once unemployment has reached the peak required percentage, an unemployment compensation extension will typically be made available for those who need it. One of the most traditionally granted federal unemployment extension is known as Extended Benefits, or EB.
When Extended Benefits are available, they are only given to unemployment recipients who have already exhausted their original unemployment benefits and are in need of an unemployment benefits extension. If an applicant is eligible to receive an unemployment compensation extension, he or she can potentially receive an extra 50 percent of the regular benefit entitlement.
How to Get an Unemployment Extension in Tennessee
While you may be asking yourself “How can I extend unemployment benefits?” it’s important to first understand the qualifications associated with unemployment extensions in Tennessee. As stated above, federal unemployment extensions are not currently available, and will not be available unless the state reaches peak unemployment rates or the Senate approves of it. However, when the extensions are made available, it’s important that the applicant falls under the required qualifications. The qualifications for an extension are similar to those found during the original claim process. In order to qualify for a federal unemployment extension, an applicant must:
- Have an active UI claim that ended on or after the first payable week of Extended Benefits.
- Not be penalized for separating from his or her last place of employment due to quitting a job, being discharged for misconduct in connection with work or refusing an offer of suitable work.
- Be willing to seek and accept any suitable work. In the state of TN, suitable work is defined as any work which an applicant has experience or training in, and can both physically and mentally perform.
- Seek work and report a required number of work searches for each week claimed, unless deferred.
- Be registered and create an online resume in the system within seven days of filing his or her initial claim.
Often times when unemployment benefit extensions have been granted in Tennessee, a secondary extension option will be made available by the Senate. This emergency federal unemployment extension is called EUC (Emergency Unemployment Compensation), which is a program set in place for those who have already exhausted both the original benefits and the Emergency Benefits. These EUC benefits are typically separated into four tiers:
- Tier 1 supplies benefits for 20 weeks
- Tier 2 supplies benefits for 14 weeks
- Tier 3 supplies benefits for 13 weeks
- Tier 4 supplies benefits for six weeks
It’s important to keep in mind that while applying for a federal unemployment extension, an applicant must maintain his or her eligibility in the same manner required of the original claim. It is required that the recipient continues to submit his or her bi-weekly claims, either over the phone or online. All applicants must also continue an active job search and must continue to keep any record of sent applications, such as the name, email, phone number and address for every job that is applied to. It is also incredibly important that all applicants practice transparency throughout the process of applying for an unemployment benefits extension. If a job has been offered, it is required by state law that the job is accepted. In the event that part-time work is offered, the applicant still has the potential to claim part-time unemployment benefits. However, if part-time or full-time work is accepted and the unemployment council is not informed by this change, it will be viewed as fraud and an attempt to knowingly continue to collect insurance benefits.