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File for Unemployment in Alaska
Filing for unemployment is best accomplished on the MyAlaska online portal. Here, you can file for unemployment, make your weekly claims, and check the status of your payments. There are also a variety of guides that will teach you how to file for unemployment and other important filing tasks.
Creating your own unique MyAlaska profile includes: making a username that is easy to remember and which contains nothing but letters and numbers; creating a password six to 50 characters long that will be difficult to guess; a personal question to which only you know the answer; a valid email address; and valid banking information (will be used for direct deposit of your benefits).
Once you've created your profile, follow the process below to make your initial claim. It should take no more than a week to hear back on your determination. If it takes longer, contact the help service contact infrmation located on your profile.
Unemployment Application and Initial Claim
File Your Unemployment Application and Initial Claim Process
- File your initial claim data – these questions determine your eligibility for UI benefits, including employment history and wages earned
- Personal information – includes your full name, mailing address, phone number, and email address
- Eligibility information – gauges if you are eligible beyond wages and work criteria, including if you have child care, transportation, or are attending school
- Deductible income information – add information about any sick, retirement, or severance pay you expect to receive
- Employment history over the last 18 months – includes names, addresses, phone numbers, dates of employment, wages, position, and current employment status with employer
- Information for registration – helps decide if you need to register with the Alaska Labor Exchange System (or ALEXsys) to find work
- Certification – the last page lets you certify that you've read all the information and that everything you've inputted is true: double-check all information for accuracy now
- Confirmation – confirms the successful submission of your application and provides a confirmation number and help when registering with ALEXsys
Documents and Information Needed During Filing
Social Security Number
Current mailing and physical address
Alien Registration Number, if not a resident
Most recent employer’s name, address, and phone number
DD 214, Member – 4 if you served in the military in the past 18 months
Dates of employment and the reason you are no longer working
Hours and gross wages earned in the last week you worked
Information about any retirement income you are receiving
Claim Weekly Benefits
After your initial claim has been approved, you must make biweekly claims in order to receive benefits. These claims verify your employment status, as well as the amount of money you're making in a part-time job.
This process must be done for the two weeks preceding the filing week and include all wages earned during that period, even if they have yet to be paid. Changes in your employment status must be verified during your weekly claims.
If you fail to accurately report your wages or changes in employment status, your benefits may be canceled. Even worse, you could be prosecuted criminally for fraud.
How to Claim Weekly Benefits
- Click on “File for bi-weekly UI benefits” on your MyAlaska profile
- File within seven days after the last Saturday of your two-week claim period – late claims may be disqualified
- Make sure to file the first week you file for benefits, even though you receive no payment during this “waiting period” – failure to do so may disqualify your bi-weekly benefits for that period
- Answer the following questions to the best of your ability:
- Were you available and physically able to work full-time each day?
- Did you miss work or refuse a job offer?
- Were you attending school or a training program?
- Did you travel or move to a different town?
- Did you receive vacation, sick, retirement, bonus, holiday or severance pay?
- Did you work for an employer, or were you self-employed?
- Report the status of your employment such as:
- Laid off
- Working on call
- Working part-time
- Quit or fired
- Indicate any wages you've earned from any side employment
Claim Denials or Discrepancies
Denials and discrepancies in claims are handled at two different levels. The first is the Appeals Tribunal, an independent unit that hears complaints and makes decisions based on information presented to them in a hearing.
Their hearing can be appealed to the Alaska Department of Labor. Here, all decisions are made by the Commissioner of Labor. Decisions here can be appealed to the state Superior Court and to the Supreme Court, if necessary.
For the sake of simplicity, only the Appeals Tribunal process will be discussed here. It is similar to the higher court processes, with a few variations.
Appeals Process for Denied Claims
When filing your appeal, you need to file by mail, email, fax, or telephone. All appeals must be done in writing and must be filed within 30 days after the determination. Call 1-800-232-4762 to learn more about this process.
Wait at least two weeks to receive your hearing notice. This will contain a variety of information, including the day of the hearing, the location, the type of hearing (in-person or telephone), the issues being decided, and instructions for the hearing.
Prepare by gathering evidence, including written notes, eyewitnesses, and remembrances of verbal warnings by your employer. Written information (such as a description of why you were let go) are crucial for proving your case, though witnesses are also essential.
If necessary, you can contact the Hearing Officer to request a subpoena of witnesses. This requires including their name and the reason they are so important to your case. Your witnesses must then testify on your behalf.
One witness testifying a specific fact relevant to your case is enough: multiple witnesses should cover multiple angles of the case. Repetitive witnesses who simply testify the same thing as another will be dismissed.
Max Weekly Benefit Amt.
Max Weeks of Benefits
Max Benefit Amount
All documents must be sent to the Appeal Tribunal for approval before the trial either by mail or fax to the addresses and numbers indicated below. Send copies, not the original documents.
Make sure to show up to your hearing on time: if you are more than 15 minutes late, the case is likely to be canceled. If you cannot make it on time, call ahead to warn the hearing officials. During the hearing, you can receive representation from an attorney, though this will be at your expense.
During the appeal, you will present evidence, talk to witnesses, and build your case. Your former employer will also be doing the same. Whoever brought the case to court has the “burden of proof.” For example, if you appealed a benefits denial, you must have a preponderance of evidence that shows your appeal is correct.
After the hearing, wait two weeks to hear back from the tribunal. Continue to file your weekly claims during this entire process, to ensure prompt collection if your appeal is successful. Winning an appeal causes immediate payment of all benefits.
However, a failed appeal can be appealed to the higher courts mentioned above. This process can take months to finish, during which you will continually need to make weekly claims and continue to search for work.
Office of Appeals Contact Information
1111 West 8th Street
PO Box 115509
Juneau, AK 99811-5509
Toll-Free Phone: 1-800-232- 4762
Unemployed? We want to help.