New Jersey Unemployment Eligibility Requirements

Get the New Jersey unemployment eligibility requirements. Find out how to file your unemployment claim in New Jersey online or by phone using the information below. If you still have questions or issues about applying for New Jersey unemployment benefits then contact the New Jersey unemployment office.

New Jersey Unemployment Eligibility
To be eligible for unemployment benefits, you must have worked at least 20 base weeks in covered employment or you must have earned $7,200. For weeks worked in 2007, the amount needed to establish a base week is $143; for weeks worked in 2008, the amount is $143; and for weeks worked in 2009, the amount is $143. These wages must have been earned during a 52 week period that is called a base year.

How do I file for New Jersey unemployment benefits?
To file your unemployment claim online, go to http://njsuccess.dol.state.nj.us/html/fileaclaimhome.html.

This site allows individuals with New Jersey employment to file a new claim for Unemployment Insurance Benefits or reopen an existing Unemployment Insurance claim over the Internet. You may use this application if you meet the following:

  • All of your work was in New Jersey in the past 18 months
  • You did not work for the federal government in the past 18 months
  • You did not serve in the military in the past 18 months
  • You did not work as a maritime employee in the past 18 months
  • You do not reside outside the United States
  • You do not want to reopen or file an Extended Benefit Claim
  • In order to process your claim in a timely manner, we strongly recommend that you enter your New Jersey driver's license number or Non-Driver Photo Identification Card number, if you have one. Although this is not a requirement for filing a claim, it will expedite the processing of your claim

You should also have the following available:

  • Pencil/pen and paper
  • Your Social Security Number
  • If you are not a citizen, you will need your Alien Registration Documentation issued by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). This includes your alien registration type and number, country of origin, and your Employment Authorization Card or Permanent Resident Card if authorized to work in the United States
  • If you wish to have your benefits directly deposited to your bank, your bank information
  • Employer information on all employer(s) in the last 18 months including: Name, address, telephone number, beginning and end dates of employment, and reason for separation
  • Please be advised that if your computer is idle for 30 minutes or more, your session will "time out" and all of your claim information will be lost. If you exit for any reason before completing the application, all of your information will be lost.

Calculating unemployment benefits and how long do unemployment benefits last?
Payments for unemployment benefits can vary from state to state, but calculating how much you will receive is simple enough to figure out for yourself. Most states determine weekly benefits using the base period quarter in which wages are highest, called the High-Quarter Method. The remaining states might use multiple methods based off the Annual-Wage Method to the Average-Weekly-Wage Formula. Because the High-Quarter Method is the most common method of computing benefits, you may be able to use this to help you determine your unemployment benefits.

How can I estimate my unemployment benefit amount?
The period that the wage earner worked closes to full time is called the high quarter. This is the period in which wages were the highest. Take the amount earned during that quarter and divide by 13, which is the number of weeks in a calendar quarter. The state determines the percentage of that wage that will be replaced. The weekly wage is divided and the weekly benefit is calculated based on the weekly wage. Depending on the state you live in, the benefit amount may replace one half of the average weekly earnings.

How long do unemployment benefits last?
After the unemployment benefits have been calculated, your state will determine the duration of benefits. Several states establish uniform durations of 26 weeks for all workers who meet qualifying wage requirements, while other states have the flexibility to assign benefits lasting anywhere from 26 to 30 weeks.

This page provides general information about applying for New Jersey unemployment benefits. The eligibility requirements in New Jersey may change from time to time, we highly recommend that if you cannot find the information you are looking for on this page that you contact the New Jersey unemployment office. They should be able to assist you with your questions or issues about your unemployment claims.