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How do I file for unemployment in Iowa if I'm laid off due to coronavirus?

How do I file for unemployment in Iowa if I'm laid off due to coronavirus?

From the Coronavirus update Northeast Iowa series
Virus Outbreak Unemployment

Visitors on Wednesday to the Department of Labor in New York are turned away at the door by personnel due to closures over coronavirus concerns. Applications for jobless benefits are surging in some states as coronavirus concerns shake the U.S. economy. The sharp increase comes as governments have ordered millions of workers, students and shoppers to stay home as a precaution against spreading the virus that causes the COVID-19 disease.

How do I file for unemployment in Iowa if I’m laid off due to coronavirus?

DES MOINES — In the wake of the governor’s order to shutter schools, restaurants, bars, casinos, theaters, gyms and seniors centers — as well as other businesses taking a hit during the coronavirus pandemic — a lot of people are out of work for the first time.

If that’s you, here’s how to file for unemployment in Iowa:

Am I eligible?

If you’ve been laid off due to COVID-19, or have to stay home to self-isolate, care for a family member or because you’re ill yourself, you are eligible to receive unemployment provided you meet all other guidelines, Gov. Kim Reynolds announced on March 16.

Iowa Workforce Development will not charge employers for COVID-19 claims and will waive fact-finding interviews for those claims, she added.

But you also have to have worked for an employer for wages for six of the last 18 months and have earned at least $2,500. If that’s all true for you, keep reading.

Self-isolating due to coronavirus? You may be eligible for unemployment, says Iowa governor

How do I file?

Head to and click on Apply for Unemployment, then follow the instructions. You can also call 866-239-0843.

Besides basic information, you’ll need your Social Security number, your start and end dates with your most recent employer and your reason for leaving.

If you’re not a U.S. citizen, you’ll need your employment authorization number and expiration date. If you’ve served in the military in the last 18 months, you’ll need your DD 214 Member #4 Form. If you’ve worked for the federal government in the last 18 months, you’ll need Standard Form 8 or 50.

Claims can be filed on weekends between 6 a.m. and 11:30 p.m., and during the week from 6 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

You’ll be asked to verify your identity through a series of questions. If you don’t or can’t answer the questions, you’ll need to provide documents proving your identity or a Real ID.

How long do I wait?

Once you successfully submit your claim, you’ll get a printable page with a confirmation number and instructions on when to begin filing your weekly claim.

You can expect to get paid within a week to 10 days after your claim is filed.

More questions? Call Iowa Workforce Development at 1-866-239-0843.


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