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    People who lose their jobs through no fault of their own find thenmselves with a loss of income. They still need to pay for their homes, feed their families, and meet their basic needs. Unemployment insurance is a benefit set up to help people meet their needs until they find new employment. It is a temporary measure that helps fill gaps until people can get back on their feet.

    In the state of Illinois, unemployment insurance is meant to be a temporary benefit. Recipients are expected to be able to work and actively seeking employment. There are several requirements for recipients in regard to their job search. People on unemployment should be looking for employment and keep connected with their counselor or agency representative regarding any changes. While on unemployment, recipients must keep several requirements in mind:

    1. You must be actively be looking for a job. You must register for work with the Illinois Employment Service, either online or in person. Their offices may have contacts and listings of possible job leads. Being registered can help with the job search process.

    2. You must make at least 2 job contacts per week. Job contacts include filling out job applications and sending resumes. Many companies now only accept online applications. Consult regulations for this in regard to the job search with material given to you or with an agency represntative.

    3. You must keep a record of all of your job search activities, including a record of all job contacts, the dates you applied and places you apply for work. When you apply for benefits, you will receive a form on which to record this information which you may have to provide to the agency on a regular basis. A review of certification forms that each claimant must maintain can occur where recipients must document their work search efforts.

    4. You must not be disabled. If you become disabled there are different programs available to help you and your unemployment counselor or local unemployment office can direct you to those resources. If you are disabled you must contact the Illinois office so they are aware of this.

    Unemployment recipients must fufill these job search requirements each week. They should be prepared to provide a weekly verfifcation so  the unemployment office knows they are meeting all of the requirements. The  job search records must be up to date. Recipients may be called into their local unemployment office for a periodic eligibility review with an agency representative.

    While looking for employment, Illinois residents can take advantage of public offices that assist with the job search. The state has several agencies and webstes that help recipients with the job search. One of these sites is Illinois Job Link. (http://www.ides.illinois.gov/page.aspx?module=10&item=2375) The site provides tools and resources such as job search events and fairs in local areas of the state. Information on workshops and new publications are also available.  This site provides information to job seekers in areas like:

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