Pennsylvania Unemployment Eligibility

In order to establish unemployment eligibility in Pennsylvania you have to:

1. Be a resident of Pennsylvania. If you are not a resident of Pennsylvania, but worked in Pennsylvania at your last job, you should still have Pennsylvania unemployment eligibility.
2. Have worked and earned income in Pennsylvania.
3. You must not be disabled.
4. You must be able to work.
5. You must be actively looking for a new job.
6. You must have lost your job through no fault of your own. If you quit your job or were fired for 'just cause' you may not be eligible to collect unemployment in Pennsylvania. Every case is different, so if you lost your job -- be sure to apply to unemployment in case you are indeed eligible to receive unemployment benefits.

There are special rules that apply to unemployment elibility for military personnel and union workers, so check with your mility or union representative for these rules.

Still Have Questions?

To go back to the Pennsylvania Unemployment FAQ Page, click here: Pennsylvania Unemployment FAQ

To go the main Pennsylvania Unemployment page, click here: Pennsylvania Unemployment

Maybe We Can Help: 

If you can't find the answer to your question, you can fill out the comment form below and I will answer your question ASAP, or you can ask the The Unemployment Expert.


# Timothy E 2011-01-04 22:36
I left my restaurant job (of 3 years) in bethlehem pa to take a contract position in my field of study in philadelphia. Shortly after moving I was told that I was no longer needed because of over staffing and was left with 6 months of job hunting. I have had 2 positions, one as a caterer which is very irregular, and one for an online newspaper who no longer needs me because they have finished all the work in my areas. I am left with bills and no work. Is there any way to gain any benefits?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# small biz 2011-06-09 15:39
i have a side business that i started with a friend... where i haven't received any money distributions. All revenue sits in the company bank or gets paid to others... never to me.

If i got fired... would this qualify as a job?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Jen 2011-06-17 11:06
I was a fulltime, 40 hour work week employee whom reduced work hours to 31 as a personal decision. I recently was told by my boss that everyone's work schedule had to be rearranged. I can't work the hours he is providing me and on top of that he is trying to reduce my hours to 20 hours instead of the 31 we decided on originally. Am I eligible for unemployment benefits? I am willing to still work there but I can't change my schedule and my boss can't accomodate me.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Niecey 2011-10-24 14:04
My husband was relocated to the PGH area due to a promotion. However, since trying to take care of two households have been such a financial burden I havd to quit my job and move with him. Will I be able to collect unemploymnet?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Tom 2011-11-03 12:25
I have been at my current job for 5 yrs and my company has been renting space in a doctors office. I have had the same hours since i have started that have allowed me to be home for my child for the school bus and i live less than 5 miles away from my job. I have recently found out that they will be losing their rented space and want to
#1 make me a salaried employee all of a sudden
#2 offer me a job that is at 4 am( i have been working at 8am for the whole 5 years) in the morning wich i will not be able to do because of my child and im a single parent it involves driving a company car. I take medicine for panic attacks and am unable to drive in the winter my docotor would be able to put something in writting. The new job is further away from home what happens if its not on the busline and i cant get there?
What are the rules on distance, transportation and drastic job/hour changes?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Theresa 2011-12-11 11:39
I got injured at home with. 8 stitches in my right hand. Dr. put me on light duty for 10 days. I am a nurses aide so therefore they told me I. couldn't work due too not being able to do. my job. I haven't worked in over 10. days due to my hand.Can I file unemployment for those/these days??? I have no income coming in.I need help.What can I do?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Lindsey 2012-01-13 16:48
I have been working for the same company since august 24,2011 . My sister watched my daughter for me so I could go to work my sister just got a job so I will no longer have a babysitter.. will I ve able to collect unemployment if I quit my job due to having to take care of ny daughter? I'm q single parent and have no one else ro help me.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# john 2012-02-15 22:29
i am collecting unemployment in pennsylvania and getting the maximum benefits. i want to move to mississippi to look for work there. my question is: will i get the maximum benefits of pa or mississippi? i'm worried about this because the maximum benefits in ms is only like $250 per week, compared to $570 here in pa.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Erin 2012-03-18 09:18
My job has several different offices from which we work. Lately they have been scheduling me out of the office that is furthest from my home and there are plenty of other employees who live closer to that office. It takes me almost an hour to get to and from work each day. It takes about a half an hour from the other office. We are compensated for mileage, however, they will not compensate until you get to the office you are scheduled from, even if you pass the other office on your way to work (which I do). I have talked to my supervisors about this and they keep saying they will do something, but they never do. Can I collect benefits if I quit because they are making me travel so far? The price of gas is killing me
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Maggie 2012-06-03 08:40
I am currently working part time, i work retail so my hours are between 15-25, I'm trying to get a new job and go back to school, but with what little I make it it's hard enough to pay bills and my share of rent, as well as keep food on the table. I have made the same amount of money for the past year, and recently lost a roommate, and downgraded to a one bedroom.
I unknowingly agreed to the amount pa uc had said I was eligible for, the 15 day appeal date passed after I started filing 2 weeks later, and realizing I receive nothing for making just a little over the amount,. By that time, uc was still sending me mail that I had to mail/fax back to them for more information, or to sign up for the employment website.

I make up to 25 dollars more than the limit, but that is what I've made for the past year, and I cannot receive anything from PA UC, and I am in the same position I started at when I decided to ask PA.UC for help......
I'm wondering who I can talk to about this after the appeal time has passed.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# James 2012-07-19 15:31
I began working for my employer on December 13, 2010. I was told by three different managers that I would be making around $75,000 a year including commision. I am still employed their and it is over 50 miles from my house. I just pulled an advertisement a week ago from my workplace on a job website, which says $75,000 plus. I make half that, and I am always the top seller. In that locations history no one has made even close to $75,000. Many days it takes me 3-4 hours to get to work due to traffic, $300.00 on average for gas and oil changes. Now I am seeing a therapist because of the stress the commute is taking and the lack of income I can barely make my bills. Am I eligible for unemployment under these conditions? Thanks.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Jess 2012-10-23 20:14
I was collecting unemployment for the past few months, looked high and low for a job. Finally found one, but once i started, 2 days ago, the description and info they gave me didn't match the job. At this point, if i were to leave that job, due to only putting in 15 hrs so far, can i go back to collecting?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Krupa 2012-11-26 15:30
I just got told that I am getting lead off from my part time job (16hours a week ). I have still my full time job though (40hours a week). Can still collect unemployement for my part time job that I just got laid off from ? Please respond ASAP. I really can't afford to loose the hours because I am the only person working in the household right now .

Thank you,
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Chris 2012-11-29 08:44
PA Unemployment - I was fired from my previous job last December - it was a justifiable firing - I got a new job in May and now business is slow - can I file for partial unemployment without any trouble from the previous employer - he had mentioned that he would deny any claims that went through in the next two years.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# stacey 2012-12-17 20:28
I have been working for the same company for almost 20 years. Recently the company is expanding and I was removed from my position and offered a different position for the same salary. i accepted the position, which i have been working in now for over 6 months, and i hate it. my old position is no longer available at this company. my question is, if i left this company, would i be eligible for unemployment benefits until i found a new job?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Gina 2012-12-18 13:32
I have worked for a company for over a year under hostile conditions. I found out one of my staff hacked my company email and was reading emails between myself and another employee. They were not always pretty comments about my staff, I couldn't understand how they were finding out the things I said or that were said. I also needed to vent to someone and was getting no help from my superiors. My anxiety and stress had been increasing to the point of going into the hospital. I took FMLA for now but can't go long without income or health insurance. Apparently this had been going on for months, right down to picking up my phone and reading my texts, but this is only here say at this point as no one actually saw it. Is there any chance at all of getting unemployment if I quit?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# steph 2013-01-10 10:08
I have worked at my job for 8 years and we have been told it will be closed in a few months..they have offered me a position that I can not take for child care and location reasons or a severance package to question is can I still apply for unemployment even though I was offered a postion that I can not take? Thanks
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Kathy 2013-01-21 19:46
My employer gives me my paycheck but about a week later I find out it bounced. This has happened to me twice, and to others I work with. The last time my paycheck was replaced, the replacement check bounced too. I need to know I can rely on my pay on payday. If I quit am I eligible for unemployment?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# hlc 2013-01-26 12:19
I work for a disabled woman who is a little crazy and paranoid. She is constantly accusing people of stealing or trying to damage her property. I was having problems with my landlord and I told her of this, she waited until I left, got his number (because he called her for a reference) and told him I was planning to move, she told him I steal food from her and that she is planning on firing me. Can I collect unemployment if she does fire me for these false claims? She's also abusive at times and constantly accuses me of theft or other misconduct...I wish I could quit and collect unemployment because I walk on egg shells because of her temper...Anybody have any answers whether I can collect either way???
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Harry 2013-02-02 20:43
Trying to find out if I have an elective surgery and my job cannot provide light duty, am i able to collect unemployment for the time off?
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Bob 2013-04-08 17:32
I quit my job because we relocated due to my wife's job. Do I qualify for unemployment? Thank you.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Alice 2013-05-24 20:15
Can I get unemployment if I quit due to being discriminated against and filed a report to the Pa labor board and nothing has been resolved. Going to work everyday has brought alot of stress on me
They have changed my hours after being there 16 years all after another manager got fired when I went to HR about them using a racial slurr
The other manager would not apologize and has made it very hard for me to go to work everyday.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# Tom 2013-07-11 18:25
I live in DE and worked in PA for over five years. I was paid this year until the end March when Ieft to have surgery. I have been on short term disability since the surgery and expect to be able to return to work at the end of August.
I do not believe that my position will be available when I am cleared to resume work and I will be let go. Do I qualify for PA unemployment compensation? I earned $7667 monthly for the past year until I left work last March. Approximately how much would the compensation be if I qualify?
Thank you.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote
# laura 2013-09-04 00:16
Will I lose my unemployment benefits if I relocate to a different state?
Please add a link to the regulation, if available.
Reply | Reply with quote | Quote

Add comment

If you have a question about your unemployment situation, or about unemployment in general, please post it here and we will try to answer it as quickly as possible, and post our reply here so that others can benefit from your question.
Also, we welcome your comments -- please tell us about your unemployment situation. Tell your story. How did you get laid-off? Have you found a new job yet? Do you have any unemployment tips to share?
- -*-
PLEASE NOTE that your comment will not post automatically, but will appear after the admin has approved it.
- -*-

Security code