Denied Unemployment? 4 Tips for Unemployment Appeals

Losing a job has been ranked as one of life’s most stressful experiences. Even if you have some money saved, it’s going to run out eventually, and then how will you pay your bills and make the rent or mortgage payments?

As an employee, you can apply for unemployment compensation benefits, which are intended to sustain those who are determined to have lost their jobs through no fault of their own. Unfortunately, a lot of valid claimants are denied, but if it happens to you, don’t give up. Below is a list of 4 tips that can help you get the benefits you need to keep your family going until you find work again.

Tip #1: Understand Why Your Claim was Denied

There are several reasons why your Texas unemployment claim may have been denied. For example:

  • You failed to meet the earnings requirements. In Texas, you must have earned wages in at least two of the four calendar quarters during the 12-month base period before you applied. In addition, your earnings during this base period must be at least 37 times your weekly benefit amount.
  • You were fired for misconduct. This includes intentionally failing to do your job, violating company policy, or breaking the law.
  • You quit your job. In Texas, you will be denied unemployment benefits if you leave your job voluntarily and without a compelling reason.
  • You refused a suitable job when offered one. One condition of receiving benefits is that you must continue to look for work and only rely on benefits as a short-term relief.

The document you receive from the Texas Workforce Commission will state why your claim was denied and provide information on how to appeal the decision. 

A successful appeal will depend on the reason for the denial- if you didn’t earn enough during the base period, appealing probably won’t be worth it. But if you voluntarily left your position due to unsafe working conditions, an appeal may be viable.

Tip #2: File Your Appeal on Time

You have up to 14 days to file an appeal with the Texas Workforce Commission Appeal Tribunal. Make sure that you explain why you believe you are entitled to benefits. For example, if the TWC letter states that your claim was denied because you quit your job, you could clarify that you left the position because a domestic violence situation made you feel unsafe there.  

Tip #3: Keep Filing Benefits Claims

As your appeal progresses, keep filing your weekly unemployment benefits claims while you look for work. In other words, act as if your application had been approved. If you win your appeal, you will receive benefits retroactively from the date your claim should have been granted, provided that you followed the rules in the interim.

Tip #4: Hire an Unemployment Appeal Attorney

Work with a Texas employment law attorney who can help you overcome the objections to your original claim and get the benefits to which you are entitled. If your employer intends to refute your claim, they will likely have a lawyer at the hearing, so you should also have an experienced legal professional present to protect your rights. Your attorney will:

  • Help you collect, prepare, and present evidence
  • Question witnesses
  • Present a compelling legal argument for why you should be awarded unemployment benefits, which can increase your chances of approval the second time around

We Will Fight for the Unemployment Benefits You Need

When you’re worried about making ends meet until you find another job, a skilled and dedicated Texas employment lawyer can help you present a strong and cohesive case for the unemployment benefits you need. At the Amsberry Law Firm, we offer a no obligation phone consultation to all new clients, so when you’ve received a denial and need to appeal, call us right away.

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Amsberry Law Firm

The Amsberry Law Firm, founded in 1995, has helped thousands of clients overcome their unique legal challenges.

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