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By Charlavan Hart

I made a bold attempt today to find out some answers for a great many people right now about unemployment checks. It always seems to be a mystery that is unsolvable. Even though you are given a number to call for answers, it is ALWAYS busy. You are sometimes given an estimate on wait time but most often now, the recording tells you to call on another day.

June 2009 (San Diego's East County)--Even though this varies slightly with each state, the basic premise is the same. Just imagine what a task it has been for these state agencies to try to keep pace with the need right now. They have put on extra help, increased their hours to 7:30 - 5:30 instead of 8:00 to 5:00. That didn't help enough so they also now are open from 10:00 to 1:00 on Saturday.

That still isn't enough when they are dealing with 7 times the amount of people they used to. But they are working at it. They have added another line. In California the new information number to check on your check or claim is 866 333 4606. The original and still workable one (even though
busy) is 800 300 5616.

There is a one week waiting period from the time you lose your job until you are able to file for unemployment insurance.

The best and most current method is online and you can actually reach them by email thru "contact". But they will encourage you to read the "Tip Sheets". There are a lot of answers there and they are current.

If you don't have a computer, remember you can always go to the public library and use one there. You can even apply for your own email address there as well.

California residents are qualified for a third reinstatement of their claim.
This state qualifies because the unemployment rate is more than the national average (10.5%). It is automatic after your second one expires and you are to receive a letter in the mail with your final check if you are qualified.

There will be a few restrictions but none that you can't overcome.

This unemployment insurance is not affected by the state budget problems since it is funded by employer's insurance. So even though the state of California is in crisis, these checks are not part of that problem. This info is per the unemployment office by a call I received this morning after I told them just yesterday I was writing an article.

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