Learn About Regular Unemployment Insurance (UI)
The Unemployment Insurance (UI) program provides temporary income for workers who are unemployed through no fault of their own and who are either looking for another job, have a definite recall to their jobs within 6 weeks of the last day worked, or are in approved training. The funding for unemployment insurance benefits comes from taxes paid by employers. Workers do not pay any costs. Eligibility for benefits is determined based on past wages, reason for job separation, and availability and job search requirements. Claims are effective on the date they are filed and are not retroactive to the last day worked. Unemployment claims can be filed in person at any Georgia Department of Labor (GDOL) career center or by Internet from any computer with appropriate Internet access.
To file an unemployment claim via the Internet, you must have a valid email address. This email account should be your personal email address because private and confidential information about your claim will be sent to this email address.
If you do not have an email address, access a listing of web sites to create a free email account before you begin the claims filing process. The Georgia Department of Labor does not sell or provide email addresses to third parties.
Please adjust the security settings and filters on your email account to allow emails from the Georgia Department of Labor. If your security settings and filters are not set properly, department emails may be undeliverable or routed to your Spam/Bulk Mail folder. This may cause a delay in processing your claim.
Who Can File By Internet?
If you have worked or earned wages in the state of Georgia in the past 2 years, you can file a Georgia Internet claim at this site. Information for individuals who cannot file a Georgia claim by Internet:
- If you reside in Georgia and have not earned Georgia wages in the past two years but earned wages in another state, go to a GDOL career center to obtain information for filing a claim against the proper state. We will also register you for employment services.
- If you reside outside the state of Georgia and have not earned Georgia wages in the past two years, contact the State Workforce Agency in your state of residence to file your claim.
Browser Requirements for Filing a Claim Online
This process contains PDFs that may need to be printed and Adobe Acrobat Reader will be required. A free software download is available from the Adobe web site. Please ensure this software is available prior to beginning the claim filing process.
Affidavit to Verify Lawful Presence in the U.S.
Georgia law requires all applicants for any type of unemployment benefits who are 18 years of age or older sign an affidavit attesting they are (1) a United States citizen or a legal permanent resident or (2) a non-citizen legally present in the United States.
You must provide valid government-issued picture identification to complete the affidavit. Employment Authorization Document(s) are also required for non-citizens. Your registration with the Department of Homeland Security must be verified before UI benefits can be paid, if eligible.
If you have already completed an Applicant Status Affidavit, you will not be required to complete the process again as this is a one-time requirement; however, each time a non-citizen files a claim for any type of unemployment insurance (UI) benefits, the employment Authorization Document(s) must be provided.
If you are filing your claim in a career center and have the required document(s), you may complete the affidavit the same day. Otherwise, you will receive an email providing instructions on completing the affidavit process. Failure to complete the affidavit process may result in a delay or denial of benefits.
When filing a claim, you should have:
- Your social security number, as a claim cannot be filed without a social security number
- Valid government-issued picture identification
- Employer-issued separation notice or letter, if available
- Names, addresses, and dates of employment of all employers for the last 18 months
- Alien number and expiration date for non-citizens
- SF-50 or SF-8 form and paystubs for federal employment in the last two years
- Most recent DD-214, orders to report or of release, military earnings/leave statement, or W-2 form(s) for former military personnel
- Personal banking account and routing number for direct deposit
- A copy of your most recently filed income tax return or quarterly estimated income tax payment record(s), if applying for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) and you are self-employed or a farmer
Use the GDOL automated telephone system, OLIVoR, to access additional information.