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Texas Unemployment is a relevant issue addressed by the Texas Workforce Commission or the TWC wherein they offer unemployment benefits to those individuals who lost their job due to reasons, not their fault or got laid off because of the pandemic.

Due to the ongoing protocols set to avoid further COVID-19 infection, the unemployment rate in Texas increased. Although now that strict protocols have changed to a minimum to average protective measures, the TWC still prioritizes people who need temporary assistance while they make the effort to find a new job.

How Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) Works

The TWC aims to establish a workforce system within the state that will benefit employers, job seekers, consumers, and the community by giving them opportunities to achieve economic prosperity. Additionally, TWC also helps people with disabilities to find the right job for them as well as gives unemployed individuals temporary assistance by offering unemployment benefits. Most funds used by the TWC came from the Federal government.

If you are one of those people from Texas who are experiencing unemployment, you can apply for unemployment benefits from TWC. To know more about the details of applying, read this article further.

Eligibility Requirements for Texas Unemployment Benefits

Here are the following eligibility requirements you must meet:

  • Information about your past wages (base period or alternate base period);
  • Information about the type of job separation;
  • Must request payment weekly when scheduled;
  • Must be currently seeking new work;
  • Physically and mentally fit to work;
  • Must be available for a full-time job;
  • Participate in required TWC activities; and
  • Must cooperate and stay in touch with the TWC of Workforce solutions as instructed.

Information About Past Wages

The taxable wages you earned during your previous employment in Texas are one of the significant pieces of information that TWC will check to determine your eligibility. This is also the basis of the unemployment benefits amount you will receive, which is specifically determined on your base period.

Base Period: What Is It?

Base period refers to your earned wages in the first four completed calendar years out of five calendar years. Each calendar year is divided into four quarters namely the first, second, third, and fourth quarters.

To be eligible for unemployment benefits, you must have the following requirements:

  1. You must have earned wages in at least more than one out of the four calendar years;
  2. Your total base period must equal 37 times your benefit amount each week; and
  3. You must have earned 6 times your new benefit amount since your prior claim (if you had one).

Alternate Base Period: What Is It?

The alternate base period is what the TWC uses if you have not been able to work for 7 weeks or more in one quarter due to illness, injury, hospitalization, disability, or pregnancy. To be eligible for claims, it is a requisite that you file an initial claim within 24 months after the disability or illness starts. Documentation about your illness, disability, or injury is also needed which should be co-signed and assessed by your healthcare provider.

Information About Job Separation

Your eligibility for unemployment benefits is also determined by assessing the type of job separation you had with your previous employer. Take note that the reason for losing your job should NOT be due to your fault or irresponsibility, otherwise, your application will not be approved.

This can be either one of the following:

  • Laid off;
  • Quitted;
  • Reduced hours; or
  • Fired.
How to Apply for Texas Unemployment Benefits

It is advisable that you start your application for unemployment benefits as soon as you become unemployed so that you can have your first claim within the week you complete the application.

There are two options you can choose from in applying:

  1. Apply online by visiting TWC’s official website. Select the application for benefits option to get started; or
  2. You can also apply by calling the telecenter number: 800-939-663 and talking to a customer service rep.

Documents To Prepare

When applying for Texas unemployment benefits, it is best that you already prepare the following documents/information:

  • Your previous employer’s basic information (e.g., name, address, and contact);
  • Your work duration information from your previous job (always use the latest information);
  • Information on your earned wages and work hours;
  • Information on the wage and job you are currently seeking;
  • Your alien registration number (applies if you are not a US citizen); and
  • Texas driver’s license or Texas identification card.

Options For Claiming Texas Unemployment Benefits

There are two options you can choose from in claiming your weekly benefits, this can be either:

  • Through direct deposit - This method directly deposits your weekly claim to your bank account credit union; or
  • Through the debit card offered by the TWC.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Can I Change The Payment Option?

If you want to change your payment method, there are two options you can do:

• Change it online by logging in to Texas Workforce and ticking the payment option button; or
• Change it by calling teleservice: 800-558-8321 and select number 5.

How Can I Request For Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA)?

If you have an existing DUA claim, you can request a benefits payment through the TWC website. Just make sure to prepare the required documents like the earnings you have each week. Requirements for employed and unemployed individuals may vary.

How Can I Determine My Benefit Amount To Be Received?

After you complete your Texas Unemployment Benefits application and get approved, you will eventually receive an email stating the amount you will receive weekly. You can also use the TWC benefits estimator to determine your possible benefit amount:

How To Submit Documents To TWC?

If you are instructed by the TWC to submit some documents, you can submit them through their submission portal which can be accessed through TWC Texas's official website. Do not forget to tick the submit button when you are done to make sure the documents are sent.

What Will I Do When I Encounter Unemployment Benefits And Identity Theft?

When you receive a confirmation or any email saying that you filed for a claim even if you did not, report it immediately to the management as it may be a possible sign of identity theft.

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