Unemployment Insurance – Illinois

1. Prepare and gather information

If you lost your job through no fault of your own, you may be eligible for unemployment benefits.

First, gather any and all information or paperwork you have related to the entire time you worked for your employer. Regardless of why you became unemployed, you may need to use or provide this information to be considered for unemployment benefits.

You should find and organize these documents as soon as possible. Then can try to find any additional documents you may need. Don’t assume that your employer is not going to contest your unemployment.

You should find and organize:

  • Employer addresses,
  • Income tax information,
  • Social Security number and name on your Social Security Card,
  • Records of any pension payment you are receiving, and
  • Other benefits you received.

For more information on what you might need, see Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) Frequently Asked Questions.

2. Fill out and submit the application

To avoid any delays in getting unemployed benefits, you should file the application during the first week of unemployment.

Normally, there are 2 ways to file the application:

However, due to the coronavirus, all IDES offices are closed until further notice. So you may have to apply online.

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