Becoming unemployed is often a surprise and catches many people off guard. If you are not prepared, it can be hard keeping up with your daily expenses while still looking for another job. Thankfully, you can apply for unemployment insurance benefits through the Indiana Department of Workforce Development if you are an Indiana resident.

How to Qualify for Unemployment

To qualify for unemployment benefits in Indiana, you cannot have lost your job because of any fault of your own. Meaning if you were fired, you cannot have been fired because of your poor performance. If you quit, then your reason for quitting has to be related directly to your job. Good reasons for quitting are harassment, unsafe working conditions, or blatant discrimination.

There are other requirements that you must meet as well, such as having to be able to work and available for work. You also need to be actively looking for a job the entire time you are receiving unemployment benefits.

You are not required to have a specific kind of job to be eligible for unemployment. However, you are not eligible if you were only hired for a temporary period, such as during a short-term strike or the holiday season.

There is also a requirement that you must have made enough money while you were employed. Through your base period, which is four quarters of employment, you must have earned at least $4,200. Additionally, out of that base period, you have to have earned $2,500 in the last 6 months.

How to Apply for Unemployment

You should apply for unemployment as soon as you can because you only receive benefits from the date when you apply. The only way anyone can apply for unemployment benefits is online through the Claimant Self Service portion of the Department of Workforce Development’s website. If you do not have a personal computer with Internet access, you can apply online at a local WorkOne office. There is a video tutorial you should watch before applying. Also, if you applied before and then stopped your benefits, you can resume your benefits online as well.

When you are applying, you will need to provide your name, address, and social security number. You also need some form of personal ID, such as a driver’s license or a state ID. Additionally, you will be asked to provide the name, address, and phone number of your last job. As part of the application, you will have to list the reason why you are unemployed and the dates you worked at the last job. You may also be required to provide a copy of the last check stub from your last employer.

How Long Does Unemployment Last?

Unemployment benefits only last for 26 weeks, and the max you can get is $390 per week. During your unemployment period, you have to sign up for work registration through, where you can upload your resume. After 4 weeks on unemployment, you will have to go to your local WorkOne office so that the staff can review your search for a new job and orient you to the services you can receive at WorkOne.

In order to continue to get your benefits each week, you will have to fill out an online voucher. The voucher will ask you a series of questions about your unemployment and your attempts at finding a job. You have to look for work at 3 different locations every week. These locations for your work search can be looking at different places online, going to job fairs, or going to WorkOne workshops.

What Can I Do If I Run Out of Unemployment?

As of now, when unemployment benefits run out, there are no other financial benefits that you can apply for through the Indiana Department of Workforce Development. In the past, there were extended benefits for people whose unemployment benefits had ended, but that program ended in 2013. However, extended benefits may be offered again if the unemployment rate in Indiana becomes extraordinarily high.

For some employees, there is special job search assistance. This is for employees that are at high risk for running out of benefits while still being unemployed. If you do come close to running out or you are out of unemployment insurance benefits, you can ask for special assistance, which will provide you with training and more help with job searches. You will get a letter telling you if you qualify for this program and it is important that you follow up as soon as possible.

What Should I Know About Indiana’s Appeals Process?

You only have 10 days to appeal a decision if you are denied benefits. An administrative law judge will hear your case, and you can present evidence and witnesses during the hearing. If the judge agrees with the denial, you have 18 days to appeal the judge’s decision with the Unemployment Insurance Review Board. Your last chance, if you are still denied, is to appeal the Unemployment Insurance Review Board’s decision through the court.

Where Can I Find the Right Lawyer?

It can be very important to find the right employment lawyer in Indiana to help you with your application process. This is especially true if you were denied benefits and need to appeal the decision. You should look through the lawyers and research the best one for you.