Weekly Certification Applications
How do I apply for a week of benefits?
Your weekly certification can be filed online at labor.idaho.gov/claimantportal. The Claimant Portal is operational seven days a week, 24 hours a day, including holidays.
You may file using your computer or by coming into a Department of Labor office and using one of our lobby computers. To access the Claimant Portal, log on to labor.idaho.gov/claimantportal and follow the step-by-step instructions for filing a weekly certification application (formerly known as weekly continued claim report).
When responding to the questions on the Claimant Portal, you may change any responses given before submitting your claim. Once you have submitted your claim, your responses cannot be changed. If you need to change a response after submitting your weekly certification application, you must contact us at (208) 332-8942. If you have questions regarding the Claimant Portal, please contact us.
When does my claim begin?
With a few exceptions, your claim will start with the Sunday of the week in which you first file your claim.
When do I file for a week of benefits?
A benefit week begins at 12:01 a.m. Sunday and ends at midnight the following Saturday. You have seven full days following the Saturday week-ending date to file your weekly certification application.
Example: Let’s say your first week runs from the 6th through the 12th. You file your weekly certification application during the week of the 13th through the 19th. The earlier in the week you file, the earlier your claim is processed. In order to have your claim processed on the same business day, you must complete the process before 6 p.m. Mountain Time. If you file after that time, your claim will be processed the next day. Claims made on weekends are processed the first working day of the following week.
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What is a waiting week?
After you establish your claim for unemployment insurance benefits, the first week you file a weekly certification application and meet all the eligibility requirements will be considered your waiting week. You will not be paid for the waiting week, but you must file a weekly certification application to get credit for the waiting week. If you earn more than 1 ½ times your weekly benefit amount in any week, then that week does not qualify as a waiting week nor does it qualify for a benefit payment. If this happens, the next week reported on your claim that meets all eligibility requirements will be counted as your waiting week. You serve only one waiting week per benefit year.
» Read more about waiting weeks here.
What if I forget to file my weekly certification one week?
The system will allow you to skip one week of filing and still keep your claim open. However, if you skip two weeks of filing, your claim will go inactive. You will have to reopen your claim.
You also will have to reopen your claim if you report two successive weeks of earnings over 1½ times your weekly benefit amount, in other words you earned too much money to receive unemployment insurance benefits during each of those two weeks. Idaho does NOT allow backdating to any prior week. If you do not submit your weekly claim as instructed, you will be denied benefits for the period you are claiming.
Do I need to submit a weekly certification application while I am waiting for a determination of eligibility?
Yes. Although you will not receive payment for weeks claimed until your eligibility has been established, you must file weekly certifications for each week for which you are requesting payment. If you are found eligible, you will be paid for the weeks claimed after the eligibility determination has been processed.
How do I report my earnings?
You must report all your earnings for the week you worked, not the week you were paid. If you have questions regarding how to report income or hours worked while on unemployment, contact us at (208) 332-8942. Work is defined as time spent in all services performed for an employer, commission work, self-employment, tips and volunteer work.
Keep track of each week’s hours and earnings. Report all earnings from all employers before any deductions. If you cannot determine the exact amount you earned, you must estimate weekly earnings as closely as possible (keep track of your hours worked each week and multiply this by your hourly wage rate). If you do estimate earnings, you must call us at (208) 332-8942 when you receive the correct earnings information. You must report any payments you receive in exchange for any services you provide or products you sell. This includes cash and non-cash payments such as room and board. Misreported or under-reported earnings will be found in an audit weeks or months later and may result in severe criminal, civil and administrative penalties.
You must report all earnings regardless of their source. This includes earnings from self-employment as well as those earned in an employer-employee relationship. If you are involved in a self-employment venture, you should contact us at (208) 332-8942 for assistance in determining how to compute and report your earnings.
Holiday, severance or bonus:
Holiday pay is reportable for the week in which the holiday occurs. For bonus or severance pay, report the amount of the lump sum payment in the week in which the payment is received. If you are to receive more than one payment for severance pay from an employer, report an equal portion of pay for each week claimed during the period covered by the payment. For example, the total amount of your severance payment divided by the number of weeks in the period covered by that payment equals the amount you should report for each week you claim benefits.
Pension, annuity or retirement:
If you contributed toward a retirement plan, the pension, annuity or retirement pay is not reportable income and is not deducted from your unemployment insurance benefits. Social Security retirement benefits are not deductible from unemployment insurance benefits because you contribute to that fund. Retirement income will be deducted from your weekly benefit amount if: 1) The payment is from a base period employer, and 2) the employer made 100 percent of the contributions to the retirement plan. Payments will be prorated on a weekly basis. For every $1 of your deductible weekly pension amount, your weekly benefit amount will be reduced by $1.
How do earnings and other income affect my payment?
If you work during the time you claim benefits, you may continue to receive some or all of your benefits depending on the number of hours you work and how much you earn. Your gross earnings must be reported in the week earned, not the week paid. The wages you earn during a week for which you claim benefits will affect your payment in one of the following ways:
- You can earn up to one half of your weekly benefit amount and still receive the full weekly benefit amount for that week. However, you must still report all amounts earned each week, even if gross earnings are less than half your weekly benefit payment.
Example: If your weekly benefit amount is $100 and you earn $47 in gross earnings, you will receive a payment for $100.
- If you earn more than one half of your weekly benefit amount, you will receive a dollar-for-dollar reduction for every dollar you earn over one half of your weekly benefit amount for that week.
Example: If your weekly benefit amount is $100 and you earn $85 in gross earnings, you have earned $35 over one half of your weekly benefit, and you will receive a payment for $65 ($100-$35).
- If you work full time, or if you earn 1½ times your weekly benefit amount or more in gross earnings in one week, you will not receive a benefit payment for that week. Full time is generally considered 40 hours per week for most occupations. If you earn over 1½ times your weekly benefit amount for two consecutive weeks, you must reopen your claim during the third week if you wish to claim for that week.
Example: If you worked full time or earned $150 or more in gross earnings, and your weekly benefit amount was $100, you would not receive a payment for that week.
To qualify for these partial benefits, you must be willing to accept all available work and report all work and earnings, including self-employment and National Guard or Reserve. Money reduced from your payment is not “lost” but remains in your account for possible future use on your claim. You may not limit your availability for work in order to receive your full weekly benefit amount. All claimants, including corporate officers, are expected to report all work performed for an employer or business during the week the work is performed, regardless of whether payment is expected.
What questions are on the weekly certification application?
Were you physically and mentally able to work each day?
If you were not able to work, you must answer “No” to this question. If you answer “No” to this question, we will call you for additional information to determine your eligibility for this week.
Were you available for work each day?
If you are not available for work, you must answer “No” to this question. If you answer “No” to this question, we will call you for additional information to determine your eligibility for this week.
If you are employer-attached or union-attached, your work-seeking question will be:
Did you maintain contact as required with your employer or union?
A job-attached claimant must remain in contact with his or her employer and be available for suitable work for each week that he or she files. A union-attached claimant must remain in contact with his or her union. If you are no longer employer-attached or union-attached, you must call us at (208) 332-8942 to update your work-seeking requirements.
Were you away from the area where you normally look for work?
You must remain fully available for work. If you were away from the area where you normally look for work, or the area you normally work in or live in, during any part of the week for which you are filing, you must answer “Yes” to this question. If you answer “Yes” to this question, we will call you for additional information to determine your eligibility for this week.
Did you refuse or miss available work?
If you were offered a job and had to turn it down, or if you were scheduled to work and for some reason did not work, you must answer “Yes” to this question. If you answer “Yes” to this question, we will call you for additional information to determine your eligibility for this week.
Did you attend school or training?
Any week that you attend schooling or training, you must answer “Yes” to this question. If you are attending school or training and have not previously reported it, someone will contact you for additional information. If you have already reported the schooling, you will not need to provide any additional information. The report will let you know if additional information is needed.
Did you work for any employers during the week claimed, including National Guard or Reserve?
Work can include cash payment, commission sales, tips and gratuities, working to pay off bills, National Guard or Reserve drill pay and reasonable cash value of room and board, groceries, clothes or any other valuable consideration.
If you worked, you will be asked to:
Enter the total amount you earned from all employers, plus tips, before any deductions were made:
Enter total dollars and cents you earned during the week. Income from employment must be reported in the week it is earned. Report all earnings. Include all gross wages (before taxes) for any work you perform during any week you claim benefits.
If you are not able to determine the exact amount you earned, you must estimate weekly earnings as closely as possible. If you do estimate your earnings, you must contact us when you receive the correct earnings information. Misreported or under reported earnings will be found in an audit weeks or months later and may result in severe criminal, civil and administrative penalties.
If you find yourself in a situation where you are working and not receiving pay for the hours worked, contact us for instructions on how to report. All hours worked must be reported, even if compensation is not expected. Please refer to the question How do I report my earnings? for additional information.
Did you work full-time hours for the entire week?
If you are employed full time during the week, you will not receive any benefits, regardless of the amount you earned. In general, 40 hours per week is considered full-time employment with a few exceptions. If you have any questions regarding whether your work was full time, contact us.
Did you quit a job during the week?
Answer "Yes" to this question if you are no longer working for the employer and you initiated the separation. If you answer “Yes” to this question, we will call you for additional information to determine your eligibility for this week.
Were you fired from a job during the week?
Answer yes to this question if you are no longer working for the employer and the employer initiated the separation. If you answer “Yes” to this question, we will call you for additional information to determine your eligibility for this week.
Were you self-employed during any part of the week?
You are considered self-employed when you are engaged in an independently established trade or occupation and are not controlled or directed by an employer in the performance of your work. Earnings are considered to be your gross income, unless you provide evidence of expenses which are absolutely required to perform your work and not common to expenses while working for an employer.
If you were self-employed, you will be asked to:
Enter the total amount you earned from self-employment, plus tips, before any deductions were made.
Enter total dollars and cents you earned during the week. For no earnings, enter a zero. Earnings are considered to be your gross income, unless you provide evidence of expenses which are absolutely required to perform your work and not common to expenses while working for an employer.
If you were self-employed, you will be asked:
Did you work 40 hours or more in self-employment?
If your self-employment involved working more than 40 hours in the week, you will be considered to be fully employed and not eligible for benefits.
Did you receive any holiday, bonus, severance or vacation pay?
If you received or are going to receive, holiday pay, enter that amount in the week in which the holiday occurs.
Bonus or severance pay:
Report the amount of the lump sum payment in the week in which the payment is received. If you are to be paid more than one payment in severance pay from an employer, report an equal portion of the pay for each week claimed during the period covered by the payment.
If you received or are going to receive, vacation pay, enter the amount for the week(s) you are actually on vacation. If your employer assigns vacation pay to certain weeks, report your vacation pay during those assigned weeks whether you take your vacation then or not. If you receive a lump-sum payment for unused vacation time, report that amount in the week in which the payment is received.
If you answer "Yes" to receiving holiday, bonus, severance or vacation pay:
Enter the total amount you received before any deductions were made.
Enter total dollars and cents.
If you are required to look for work your question will be:
Provide at least two work search contacts that you made with employers. You will be prompted to enter your work search contact information.
MISTAKES: If you make a mistake, contact us at (208) 332-8942 to make the correction as soon as possible.
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