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    To qualify for unemployment benefits you may have to prove your eligibility to an unemployment insurance claim hearing.

    Filing for unemployment benefits in the state of Illinois can be a little confusing the first time. This article will provide you with some tips to help you speed up your unemployment benefits application so you can use your time for more important things.

    PRIVACY

    The information you provide in your unemployment benefits claim to the Illinois Department of Employment Security is confidential. Your privacy is protected by the Unemployment Insurance Act, section 1900. The department can’t share that information with your wife, family members or anyone else without your authorization. However, the same section of the Unemployment Insurance Act allows the Employment Security Agency to share the information you supply in the unemployment compensation claim with your previous employers. Any discrepancies between your claim and your employers records could affect your eligibility for compensation.

    TAX ISSUES

    Even though you are unemployed you still have to pay tax on your unemployment benefits. Unemployment benefits are subject to both Federal and State income taxes. However, you do get a tax break for your first $2,400.

    How you pay your taxes is your decision. You can cash out your entire unemployment compensation and pay your own taxes or you can choose to have your Federal or State taxes (or both) deducted directly from your benefit payments. The will mean a 13 percent deduction off your unemployment benefits, 10 percent for federal taxes and 3 percent for the State of Illinois taxes.

    SEARCH FOR EMPLOYMENT

    When you are unemployed your job is to find a job. It is a cliche, but in the eyes of the Illinois Department of Employment Security, the agency that signs unemployment benefit checks, it really is. If you cannot prove you are actively searching for work, you do not qualify for benefits. If you are not looking for work, you are no longer part of the workforce and therefore you are not eligible for unemployment benefits.

    It is important you keep good records of your efforts to find work in case you are required to prove it at an benefits eligibility interview. Keep a weekly record of the companies you have visited, have offered you a job interview and left your resume with. If you fail to provide your job search records your unemployment benefits claim could be denied.

    USE ILLINOIS SKILL MATCH

    Illinois Skill Match, the Illinois State sponsored job search website, offers useful resources to help you find work. Visit their website regularly and register yourself on their website. There are thousands of job opportunities available every day. This includes exclusive information on Federal civil service job opportunities in Illinois and throughout the U.S.

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