CA EDD Unemployment Claims: Do's and Don'ts

Melanie MacMichael Butler

Written by

Lawyer - West Covina, CA

Contributor Level 11

Posted over 4 years ago. Applies to California, 7 helpful votes



DO return your continued claim form on time

Unless you have found a full-time job and are sure you will no longer need benefits, return all claim forms on the date listed on the form. However, do not return the form prior to this date. If you fail to return your continued claim forms in a timely manner, your benefit payments will be delayed, and your claim may be closed, requiring you to apply to re-open it. Even if you are appealing an EDD determination and are not currently receiving checks while the appeal is pending, you must continue to return the claim forms you receive during this time period if you want to be paid for these weeks upon a successful appeal.


DO report all work during the claim period

If you do ANY work during the claim period, paid or unpaid, it must be reported on your claim form. This includes work that is performed during the claim period for which you have not yet been paid. Work which must be reported includes, but is not limited to, contract or freelance work, payments for providing in-home healthcare services for your family members, and part-time employment. Failing to report these items could result in ineligibility for continued benefits,


DO look for work each week and keep a record of your job search efforts

You must be available for full-time employment and actively search for such employment to be eligible for unemployment benefits. You need to be able to establish that you have been submitting applications or inquiring about potential positions in your field if you are scheduled for any appointment or interview. Depending on how long you have been receiving benefits, you may also be required to document your job search efforts on the back of your continued claim forms.


DON'T miss any phone interview

If you are scheduled for a phone interview, do not panic. Often you will still be eligible for benefits following the interview, and EDD's issue with your claim is a minor misunderstanding that can be easily cleared up. If your benefits are suspended pending the phone interview and EDD determines after speaking to you that you are still eligible, you will receive all benefits for unpaid claim forms you have previously submitted, and receive continued claim forms for the weeks during which your benefits were suspended. If you fail to answer EDD's call at the time and date your interview is scheduled, EDD will make a determination based upon the information they have, and it may be held against you that you failed to participate in the phone interview.


DON'T assume an initial EDD determination that you are ineligible or received overpayments is final

If you receive a determination letter from EDD stating your are ineligible to receive benefits or that you have received overpayments due to intentional misstatements or misrepresentations, do not resign yourself to this fate. Included with this correspondence will be an appeal form, which you must return within 20 days of the mailing date indicated on your decision letter. After returning this form, you will be assigned a hearing date with an administrative law judge who is not an employee of EDD. You may wish to consult an attorney, or bring your lawyer with you to the hearing to help you present evidence and question witnesses.

Additional Resources

EDD Website

California Unemployment Insurance Appeals Board

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