How to Claim Unemployment Benefits in Wisconsin
Regardless of what state you reside, there are certain guidelines that you may pursue when filing for unemployment. In case you have lately lost your job—be it a lay off or if you were fired – you might be entitled for unemployment benefits. In the state of Wisconsin, one of the easiest and fastest ways to file is by doing it online.
Wisconsin unemployment benefits offer short-term compensation to those workers meeting the eligibility requirements of Wisconsin law. The Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development manages its own unemployment insurance program within Federal rules.
There are a number of aspects to consider if you need unemployment insurance from the state of Wisconsin. You should study your eligibility, your weekly benefits and tax information before applying.
The value of unemployment benefits in Wisconsin varies from that of other states because each state unemployment office applies its own limits and formula when computing the level of unemployment compensation. The period of unemployment benefits in Wisconsin may also vary from that other states.
Although a person has earned adequate wages during the base period, there are a number of factors that can lead to disqualification for unemployment in Wisconsin.
Applicants can be barred if they were fired from their most current employment for misconduct or excessive absenteeism. Eligibility issues also occur if a claimant abandons his or her job for no good reason, fails to make a suitable work search for a given claim week or works in excluded employment.
Excluded employment involves uncovered jobs such as working for a school while a student at that school and working for a family-owned business. Finally, working full time hours, or not being obtainable to work full-time hours, can also outcome in benefit disqualification.
For more information check Wisconsin Unemployment Eligibility article.
When should I apply?
You must apply for jobless benefits by completing a first claim application in the first week for which you want to obtain an unemployment check or within 7 days of the end of that calendar week. If you wait to file your claim, you could lose benefits. You claim does not begin until you file your initial claim and benefits will not be paid for previous weeks.
An application must be made every time you want to begin collecting benefits. All claims based on work done in Wisconsin are filed either by online or by telephone, even if you reside in another state at present.
What Information Do I Need to Apply?
- Your Social Security Number
- A Personal Identification Number (PIN) which is a 4-digit number you frame before applying and it helps to identify you. The same PIN has to be used for all telephone and online unemployment services. Decide a PIN you will remember
- Your Wisconsin Driver’s License Number
- The names of employers for whom you worked in the past 18 months
- For each employer you will also need, a full address (including zip code), a telephone number, the reason you are no longer working there and your first and last dates of work
- Your Alien Registration Number, if you are not a U.S. citizen.
- If a member of a skilled trades union, the name and local number of your union hall.
- Your Current Address. You need a valid mailing address to receive important documents about your claim. Make sure you have notified your post office of any recent changes to your address.
How to Apply for Unemployment Benefits?
- Apply by online
- Apply by phone
How Do I Apply Online?
Apply online by using Online application.
What are the Advantages of Applying Online?
When you make use of Internet application to apply for benefits you may take as much time as you want without feeling rushed.
You can see the questions and answers and easily study the help screens before answering the questions.
You will have a chance at the end of your claim to print a record of the questions and your answers for your records.
Certain situations need extra information that the unemployment department cannot collect via the Internet application at this time. You may be instructed to call a claims specialist to complete your claim. The information you have already given will be saved and obtainable to the claims specialist when you call.
How do I apply by telephone?
Apply by calling one of the following telephone numbers:
- If you live in the Madison local calling area: 608-232-0678
- If you live in the Milwaukee local calling area: 414-438-7700
- If you live outside of the Madison or Milwaukee local calling area: 1-800-822-5246
- For deaf, hard-of-hearing and speech-impaired callers (Callers must have a telephone typewriter device. Voice calls are not answered on this number.): TTY 1-888-393-8914
A recorded voice will answer your call. The voice will ask you questions and tell you what numbers to press to give your answers.
You have to press 1 to apply for benefits. After you have answered all the questions, one of the personnel will help you finish.
Apply during these times:
- Sunday- 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
- Monday-Friday- 6:00 AM – 7:00 PM
- Saturday- 9:00 AM – 2:30 PM
After you file for new Application:
You will obtain a claim confirmation form and handbook in the mail.
In case you meet the criteria for unemployment benefits, the unemployment department will send you a notice telling you the amount of benefits you can collect.
If you do not qualify for unemployment benefits, the unemployment department will send you a notice that tells you why.