Applying for Unemployment Benefits
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When to Apply
Apply for benefits as soon as you are unemployed because your claim starts the week you complete the application. However, you may not apply until after your last work day. We cannot pay benefits for weeks before your claim effective date.
Apply for benefits with the state where you worked during your base period. If you worked in more than one state, see If You Earned Wages in More than One State .
If your last job was for a temporary agency or staff leasing company, you have additional requirements:
- If your last job was for a temporary agency, you must immediately contact the temporary agency for a new assignment and wait three business days after your assignment ended before applying for benefits. The agency has three business days to offer you a new assignment.
- If your last job was for a staff leasing company, you must immediately contact the staff leasing company for a new assignment.
Read about how temporary work affects your benefits.
How to Apply
Apply for benefits in one of two ways:for help applying online.
Information You Need to Apply
You will need:
- Your last employer’s business name, address and phone number
- First and last dates (month, day and year) you worked for your last employer. If you worked for your last employer on more than one occasion, provide the most recent employment dates.
- Number of hours worked and pay rate if you worked the
week you apply for benefits (Sunday through Saturday)
- Information about the normal wage for the job you are seeking
- Alien Registration number (if not a U.S. citizen)
Your Unemployment Benefit Services Password
When you sign up for online services, you will select a User ID and password. Your password protects your identity and privacy. It has the same legal authority as your signature on a paper document. Do not give your password to anyone, not even to a family member or TWC employee. You are responsible for any payment request made using your User ID and password.
If you have a User ID and password from WorkInTexas.com. use that User ID and password to logon to Unemployment Benefit Services. For more about the password requirements, go to Managing Your Benefits Password & PIN .
Establish & Change Payment Options
When you apply for benefits, TWC offers you one of two ways to get your benefit payments:
- Direct deposit, which is direct payment into your personal checking or savings account in a U.S. bank or credit union
- Debit card, which is issued by the TWC -contracted bank
TWC will deposit payments to the TWC debit card account unless you sign up for direct deposit.
If you signed up for direct deposit on a prior claim, TWC will use the checking or savings account information you previously provided.
To select or change your payment option online or by phone:
- Log on to ui.texasworkforce.org and select Payment Option from the Quick Links menu.
- Call Tele-Serv at 800-558-8321 and select option 5.