How to Apply for Unemployment in Washington State
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If you are asking yourself “How can I sign up for unemployment in Washington?” you will be pleased to know that you can file an online application for unemployment. If applying online does not interest you, there are other options to consider, but no matter what option you choose, you need to know how to file for an unemployment claim correctly. Keep reading to learn about the following.
- What you need to apply for unemployment in Washington
- Applying for Washington unemployment benefits online
- Applying for unemployment over the phone in Washington
- Registering for work in Washington
If you do not know where to register for unemployment benefits, it is important to note that the Washington Employment Security Department does not accept in-person applications.
Washington Unemployment Resources
What You Need to Apply for Unemployment in Washington
No matter how you intend to apply for unemployment benefits in Washington State, you will need to have certain pieces of personal and professional information within reach. This will save you time, and ensure that you answer all the questions on the application correctly. Before you start your application to file for an unemployment claim, please be sure to have the following information at your disposal.
- Full legal name, social security number, past and current addresses, and phone number
- Past employment information that includes your work dates and income information
- Citizenship status or work authorization information
- Banking information (for direct deposit)
If you served in the military, you will need your DD-214, two through eight, and if you were a federal employee, you will provide information from Standard Form Eight (SF8). When you apply for unemployment benefits in Washington, please be sure that all of your information is up to date, especially your contact number and current address. If you provide the Employment Security Department with a previous address, the U.S. Postal Service may deliver your benefits to the wrong location.
Applying for Washington State Unemployment Benefits Online
If you do not know where to sign up for unemployment in Washington, the state recommends that you apply for unemployment online. The online application for unemployment can be found on the Washington State Employment Security Department website, and it is completely secure. The WA State online application for unemployment will request personal information, such as your name and contact information, as well as questions about your previous employer and your income history.
The state also recommends that you apply for unemployment benefits as soon as possible, even if you do not have all the necessary information. You can update your information online or over the phone later on, and the sooner your application is processed and approved, the sooner you can begin receiving benefits. Your unemployment EDD application claim will become effective on the Sunday of the week that you apply, regardless of the day you submitted your application. If you still do not know how to apply for unemployment online, you may want to apply over the phone or look over an online practice application. The practice application contains the same questions as the real application, but it cannot be submitted.
Applying Over the Phone in Washington State
As previously stated, you can also file for unemployment in Washington over the phone. You will need to call the state Automated Claims Line to complete an unemployment claim, and if you do not have the necessary information on hand, the claims specialist may ask you to call back later. When calling, please tell the WA unemployment registration specialist if you are under the protection of a court order before you begin to answer questions. You can elect to have the application translated into the following languages:
If you elect to call the Washington Unemployment Claims Center instead of the Automated Claims Line, a claims specialist, instead of a computer, will ask you questions. This is the best option if you prefer to interact with a human, but it usually takes longer than the other application methods. You will need to file for unemployment in WA by phone if you:
- Were unable to work for at least 13 weeks due to an injury or illness.
- Had more than 17 jobs in the last 18 months.
- Worked in two or more states.
You can also complete a WA unemployment EDD application using a tablet or smartphone if you do not have access to a personal computer.
Registering for Work in Washington State
If you intend to apply for unemployment benefits in Washington each week, you will need to be:
- Registered with a local WorkSource employment center
- Available for work
- Capable of working
- Seeking new employment
As long as you file for unemployment in WA on a weekly basis, you must make three employer contacts. To maintain eligibility for unemployment, record when you make a contact and other relevant information in a job-search log to present to the state. If you do not make three contacts, you will need to go to three job-search activities at your local WorkSource center. If you fail to engage in either of these activities, your weekly unemployment claim will be denied.
If you do not remember where to apply for unemployment in WA, just remember to file online or by phone.