Eligibility for Unemployment in Alabama

When determining eligibility for unemployment in Alabama, you may be asking, “What are the requirements to get unemployment insurance in the state?” Unemployment insurance eligibility extends to unemployed and underemployed state and federal workers who need financial assistance and meet certain requirements. Program eligibility is based on certain guidelines, eligibility rules and financial requirements for applicants. Other qualifications for unemployment depend on an applicant’s work history and wages earned before filing a claim. When a worker begins collecting unemployment insurance, he or she must continually meet eligibility requirements to continue receiving benefits in the state. Any financial or household change that occurs must be reported to the state’s unemployment agency and may affect an enrollee’s eligibility status. Learn about who qualifies for unemployment in Alabama and more by reviewing the following sections.

Qualifications for Unemployment in Alabama

To meet eligibility for unemployment in Alabama, applicants must meet certain state-imposed minimum rules and requirements. The state determines the unemployment insurance eligibility of unemployment insurance (UI) applicants, the period of time applicants are allowed to receive benefits and the potential benefit amounts based on these requirements. Although state-specific qualifications for unemployment are implemented by Alabama, the state must adhere to guidelines dictated by the United States Department of Labor. Each state has developed a specific unemployment insurance program controlled by a state agency. For example, California’s Employment Development Department (EDD) and Alabama’s Department of Labor (DOL) are the state agencies that run their states’ respective unemployment programs. Eligibility for EDD programs in California and DOL programs in Alabama are based on different state-specific requirements. Learn more about eligibility requirements by downloading our free in-depth guide.

In order to meet requirements for unemployment eligibility in Alabama, UI applicants must be ready and physically able to accept job offers. These unemployment qualifications mean an applicant must have the experience and/or training to meet wage and work requirements in the state’s job market. Unemployment insurance eligibility in Alabama is dependent on an applicant having adequate time and ability to search for jobs and their availability for employment. Being incarcerated, ill or injured, attending school or in any situation that reduces availability for full-time employment may result in denial of unemployment benefits. To be eligible for unemployment benefits, applicants must also have flexibility while searching for employment. This means accepting employment that offers lower wages than previous employers.

Another eligibility for unemployment requirement is being unemployed or underemployed by no fault of your own. Some acceptable situations for no fault unemployment include being fired without cause and quitting with good cause, such as workplace harassment. On the other hand, unemployment benefit qualifications are not met if an applicant was fired with relevant cause or voluntarily quit a job. Relevant cause includes misconduct or violating company policy. In these situations, the applicant will not be eligible for unemployment benefits. Learn more about how to qualify for unemployment in AL, as well as about valid versus invalid reasons for employment termination in our comprehensive guide.

Alabama qualifications for unemployment require other income such as holiday, sick leave, retirement, vacation, severance or bonus payments be reported to the UI benefit office. Alabama unemployment eligibility and benefit amounts can be affected by these payments.

Financial qualifications for unemployment in Alabama are based on the hours you have worked and the income you have earned within a certain period of time before a claim was filed. This period, known as the base period, is calculated along with wages and earnings during that time to determine the maximum unemployment insurance amount available to an applicant. In Arizona, the base period is considered the most recent four out of the last five calendar quarters before a claim is filed. If unemployment benefit eligibility is not met using this period, an alternate base period may be used.

Eligibility for unemployment in Alabama could be affected if the UI applicant is receiving other government assistance. If worker’s compensation or Social Security Disability (SSD) payments are being accepted from any state, they must be reported when applying for unemployment benefits. Enrollment in school or receiving employment training should also be reported to the Alabama UI office. If any of the qualifications for unemployment mentioned above are not met, an applicant may be denied benefits. To determine how to keep qualifying for unemployment after being accepted to receive benefits, consult the following information.

Maintaining Unemployment Insurance Eligibility in Alabama

When initial eligibility for unemployment conditions have been met in Alabama, UI recipients must meet certain requirements to remain in good standing with the state and continue receiving financial assistance. The requirements to get continued unemployment benefits include:

  • Participating in interviews and eligibility reviews.
  • Actively searching for employment opportunities each week.
  • Registering with the Alabama Employment Service or Employment Service in state of residence.

Unemployment insurance eligibility standards in Alabama require an unemployment insurance claim form to be filed with the Alabama DOL each week, even after you have completed the steps to apply for unemployment insurance. Another unemployment benefit qualification in Alabama may require claimants to participate in mandatory eligibility and benefit interviews. Employer contact information, including address and phone number, date of contact and method of contact must be regularly reported. Failure to meet qualifications for unemployment by submitting the aforementioned information in weekly claims may result in the cancellation or denial of benefits.

For Alabama residents, unemployment insurance eligibility standards require UI recipients to register with the online Alabama Career Center System in order to search for employment. Claimants must upload a resume to the site. If the UI recipient is in another state, she or he must follow the state workforce agency registration requirements. Unemployment eligibility guidelines in Alabama also require UI recipients to enroll with the Alabama Employment Service program. This program provides training for unemployed and underemployed workers to quickly find stable employment. To meet unemployment eligibility guidelines in the state, UI recipients must continually search for employment and report weekly work search information to the Alabama Career Center or relevant workforce agency.

Finally, to meet qualifications for unemployment as an underemployed worker, specific changes in employment, job searches or income must be reported to the Alabama DOL. Unemployment eligibility and benefit amounts can be affected by these changes, so they must be reported immediately. An example of a situation that should be reported includes receiving additional income while collecting benefits.