Question: I was laid off in June and given three months of severance. I was also paid for my COBRA expenses under the Economic Recovery Act. As part of my severance, my company’s HR promised that they would not contest any application I might make for unemployment insurance. Can I still apply now?
Queens, New York
Answer: Yes, you can still apply now for unemployment insurance benefits.
From the facts you have presented, you were probably entitled to collect unemployment insurance from June, when you were initially laid off, even though you were collecting severance. Like most states, New York does not deny unemployment benefits to a person solely on the basis that he or she is collecting separation pay or severance.
If you would like to request credit now for the period of time you did not file, write to: NYS Dept. of Labor, Central Support Unit, P.O. Box 15130, Albany NY 12212. Your letter should include your name, address, telephone number, Social Security number, the period of time for which you would like credit, and the reason you did not file your claim when you were terminated in June. A review and determination will then be made, and you will be contacted with an answer.
Best, Al Sklover
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© 2009 Alan L. Sklover, All Rights Reserved.