About the Unemployment Insurance System When Requesting Weekly Benefit Payments

Unemployment Insurance (UI) provides temporary financial assistance to qualified individuals who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own and who continue to meet Massachusetts UI eligibility requirements.  The program is not a right to all who have lost their job.

Keep these top ten key facts in mind when you are filing for UI benefits to ensure accurate and timely payment of benefits.

1. Be Available for Work.  In order to receive benefits, you must continually verify that you are able, available and willing to accept suitable work. If you are outside of the country, you are not considered available for work, and therefore not eligible to collect benefits during that time frame, except under special provisions as outlined in M.G.L.Chapter 151A.

2. Actively Search for Work.  You must search for work each week or benefits may be denied.

3. Report Any Wages You Are Earning.  You must report your gross wages for each week you work. Report all earnings – including part-time or temporary work.

4. As Soon As You Begin Working Full-Time Again, Stop Claiming Benefits.  You cannot receive UI benefits after you have returned to work regardless of whether you have been paid or not.

5. Accurately Report the Reason You Are Unemployed.  It’s important that you accurately report  the reason for any loss of employment if you have been working part-time while claiming benefits.    

6. Register with the Massachusetts One-Stop Career Centers.  To be eligible for benefits, you are required to attend a Career Center Seminar where you will learn about available resources to help you become re-employed.

7. Develop an Effective Work Search Plan.  Contact your local Career Center for help with planning an effective work search.

8. Avoid Errors and Ensure Proper Payment of Benefits.  To prevent errors that may result in an overpayment, read all of the information provided to you.

9. Follow the Rules to Prevent Committing Fraud.  Anyone who receives UI benefits is legally responsible for following the rules. Failure to follow the rules can have serious consequences, including fines, penalties and even imprisonment.

10. Collecting benefits while outside the country. You are not eligible for benefits for any period of time you are outside of the United States, its territories or Canada; you should not request benefits for that time.