Can Money in My Bank Checking Account Affect My Unemployment Benefits?

You don't have to drain your checking account before you can receive unemployment benefits.

You don't have to drain your checking account before you can receive unemployment benefits.

Unemployment benefits are weekly cash payments you may qualify for if you lose your job. The idea is to help you keep your financial head above water until you start working again. There are eligibility requirements for receiving unemployment benefits. However, no qualifying rules are based on your bank account balance or any other assets you own.

Qualifying for Unemployment Benefits

Although your checking account balance doesn’t affect qualifying for unemployment benefits, your recent earnings do. Specific amounts vary from state to state, but in general you must work a minimum amount of time and earn a minimum amount during a base period. Base periods are usually the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters. You must look for a job while you are receiving unemployment benefits and take a job if one is offered. You aren’t eligible if you quit your job. You qualify only if you were laid off, fired without cause or are otherwise out of work through no fault of your own.

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